May 30, 1941 (19th Parliament, 2nd Session)


Jean-François Pouliot



It was with the utmost
regret that I saw that our securities, which were in the east block under the guard of the Minister of Finance, were being transferred to the Bank of Canada; and it was with still deeper regret that I learned from the press that these securities were transferred from the Bank of Canada to the foreign exchange control board, which does not issue our bank notes. What guarantee, therefore, is there for the bank notes? Our securities, which are the pledge for these bank notes, are in the hands of a body other than that which issues the bank notes. We have inflation, of course. If the issuance of bank notes is made by a body that is distinct from the one that holds our national securities, the bank notes are not covered when they are issued. Of course, it is the suggestion of the intelligentsia, and it was done before the time when the present Minister of Finance took charge of that department. I have, however, sufficient confidence in him to expect that he will put things in order in his department and that he will be strong enough to correct abuses.
Is it not my definite right as a member of parliament to ask for information with regard to this matter, which is of national importance? There is a question which has been on the order paper since May 23 and is now the first of the questions on the order paper today. The question has been there for some

time, and I want some definite information in answer to it. I have been refused information about the gold held by other countries and now in the vaults of the Bank of Canada but not in the possession of the Bank of Canada. I may tell the minister I have information that the transfer from the Bank of Canada to the foreign exchange control board was not authorized by the board of directors of the Bank of Canada. I shall say more, that when the Bank of Canada was instituted it was set up as a privately owned corporation, but now it is publicly owned, since the Dominion of Canada has purchased all the stock of that bank. As it is a publicly owned organization, how is it that we members of parliament are denied information with regard to it? We should be the first to know about it.

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