Pooled Registered Pension Plans Act (A)

Elizabeth May: Mr. Speaker, I would ask the parliamentary secretary to perhaps amend his remarks. I think he mistakenly referred to a postal strike. I think he meant the postal lockout.


My question is on other urgent pension matters that I do not know that the government is dealing with. I wish we were able to look at pension issues and not be merely focused on this quite inadequate private sector pooled registered pension plan. Instead, I wish we were able to look at the urgent issue that pensions that were not protected in the private sector be protected as secured creditors in bankruptcy, such that the workers at Nortel would not be wiped out by what happened to them. This is a continual problem in our economy.

Why are we not acting to protect the pensions of people under the superannuation scheme, of retired RCMP, military and civil servants who lose pension benefits to their surviving spouse if they remarry after age 60.

Those are urgent issues and I do not see the government addressing them.

Pierre Poilievre: Mr. Speaker, the hon. member has raised good questions.

I would simply add that in order for any of our pensions, public or private, to function, we need a strong business sector generating the wealth to pay into those funds.

We have created a vibrant business sector by signing nine new free trade agreements, by lowering business taxes by one-third, by cutting red tape and by moving forward with a budget that is coming this spring that will reduce the cost and the burden of government so that we can unleash the strength of free enterprise so that people can aspire to provide for themselves, their families and, eventually, for their retirements.