January 31, 1939 (18th Parliament, 4th Session)


Charles Hazlitt Cahan

Conservative (1867-1942)

Hon. C. H. CAHAN (St. Lawrence-St. George):

Mr. Speaker, the speech of His
Excellency the Governor General briefly expresses the views of the Prime Minister (Mr. Mackenzie King) and his colleagues with respect to the new trade treaty with the United States. It speaks of this treaty as "a far-reaching agreement", as "a constructive contribution toward a betterment of world conditions", as "furthering the ends of international goodwill," as a reduction of customs duties and excise "much greater than that made by any previous parliament or by any other country in recent years"; and, finally, as enlarging "the advantages of the agreement concluded in 1935". I do not intend to-day to combat each and every of these specious announcements, but I should like to refer to one or two of them.
In other official pronouncements it has been designated as a policy of appeasement. Last June in the house I made an analysis of the trade of Canada and the United States under the trade agreement then in force, and I showed from the returns brought down by the Minister of Trade and Commerce (Mr. Euler) that the increase of our exports to the United States of commodities, on which there had been no change in the United States customs duties under that agreement, was far greater than the increase of our exports under the schedule of commodities on which the United States tariff was reduced by that agreement. With the permission of the house I should like to place on Hansard a short table of only three lines in which I have brought down the figures to cover the corresponding period of the calendar year of 1938, showing for 1935, 1936, 1937 and 1938 the domestic exports from Canada to the United States, and segregating the value of those commodities exported on which a reduction of duty was made in the United States tariff. If I may be allowed to place the table on Hansard, it would clarify the comments which I may wish to make.

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