Oral Questions – Foreign Investment

Elizabeth May: Mr. Speaker, since the hon. Minister of International Trade did not seem to understand the question asked moments ago pertaining to the constitutionality of the China-Canada investment treaty, I would like to ask the Prime Minister the following.

Does he not agree that the provinces will be forced into arbitrations where they do not have the right to appear? Do arbitrations for damages against Canada for decisions at the provincial level not demand explicit agreement within the treaty before it is approved?


Right Hon. Stephen Harper: Mr. Speaker, once again, the foreign investment promotion and protection agreement establishes reciprocal obligations between the parties. Canada has had a situation with the People’s Republic of China for some years where the latter’s investment has been virtually unrestricted here and we have had more difficulty with our investment there.

This agreement is an important step forward. That is why it has been so well received by the Canadian investment community. I would urge all members to look at it carefully and support it.