February 25, 1916 (12th Parliament, 6th Session)


John Gillanders Turriff



I am not very well posted on life insurance matters, but I have a couple of small policies, and therefore I am a policy-holder.
. Sir THOMAS WHITE: We do not want to tax you.
Mr. TURRIFF; Why should you let'me off, and tax the man who is paying fire insurance? That is what I am trying to get at. Why should the man who has life insurance get off scot free; why allow to get off scot free those insurance companies that have a very small amount of capital, but that have piled up millions and tens of millions of dollars, while the shareholders of fire insurance companies, marine insurance companies and accident insurance companies are to be taxed? 'It seems to me that it is giving an unfair advantage to life insurance companies as against the other insurance companies.
There are a couple of other classes of companies that my hon. friend puts in the same position as the companies 1 have mentioned-the mining and lumber companies. It seems to me to be altogether unfair to put a mining company in the same class as an industrial company or a loan company, because the mining company is using up its capital every year in taking ore out of the ground. It is always considered that unless a mining stock is paying 20 per cent the stock is not worth par, and the same argument applies to lumber companies. And yet lumber companies are put by the hon. minister in exactly the same position as commercial companies, notwithstanding the fact that every year they are digging out of their capital. For every thousand feet of lumber they take out, there is so much less standing timber out of which to make lumber. Take again the mining companies which should pay, and pay well;

my hon. friend lets them off altogether. Under the present proposition there is- no attempt whatever to tax the big nickel industry of Canada. That industry is owned outside of Canada. The Canada Copper Company in Sudbury own the largest nickel properties on the earth. They mine more nickel than any other company. There are only three concerns in the world handling nickel. We in Canada own 85 per cent of all the nickel that.has ever been discovered. The only place, outside of Sudbury, Canada, where nickel 'has been discovered is the island of New Caledonia, near Australia, and that deposit is owned by the Anglo-French Nickel Company. They control about 15 per cent of the product of the world; the other two companies own the balance, and those two companies are the Canada Copper Company and the Mond Nickel Company, an English concern who mine their ore near Sudbury, smelt it into matte, and ship the matte to England where it is refined. The Canada Copper Company is only a subsidiary of the International Nickel Company. They have at Sudbury the largest mine in the world. They are producing a huge amount of nickel, copper, gold, a certain amount of silver, and a large amount of platinum, with its great value. This is all sold by the Canada Copper Company to the International Nickel Company at a price that gives a moderate profit to the Canada Copper Company. Xhe Canada Copper Company will pay probably a Small tax to the Government in this connection, but the great big profit is made by the International Nickel * Company, that purchases this matte, takes it down to the state of New Jersey, refines it, and puts it into commerce. They have the big end of the profit, but they do not pay one single dollar of taxes to this country.
Of all mistakes that this Government have made during the past year or two this is one of the greatest. I charge this Government with being absolutely unfair to Canada; I charge this Government with standing in with the Huns, our enemies, in so far as they 'have refused to exercise their power to prevent the exportatioir of nickel to the United States. Who are the International Nickel Company? The Krupps, of Berlin, and German-Americans own and control that company. The hon. member for North Simcoe (Mr. Currie) stated the other day that Germany cannot make armour plate, and cannot make guns, without the nickel that comes from Canada. Here we
are supplying our enemies with nickel with which to make their armour plate. Canada has it in her power, and has had it in her power ever since the war began, to prevent the Germans from getting any further armour plate to build their battleships, and the Government have refused to exercise this power. What have they done to prevent our nickel going to Berlin to make guns and warships to kill our sons? Nothing, and I charge them with that dereliction of duty. But take it on the commercial side alone. The International Nickel company have 2,000 men at work in New Jersey refining our nickel. Why are they not refining it in Canada? That is something for the Government to answer. Two thousand men at work drawing 'big pay!

Topic:   THE BUDGET.
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