April 18, 2013
OTTAWA– Liberal International Trade critic Wayne Easter made the following statement today on the NDP’s rejection of a Liberal amendment for public hearings across Canada on the Canada-China Foreign Investment Promotion and Protection Agreement (FIPA):
“Today, the Liberal Party of Canada presented a motion in the House of Commons calling for the International Trade committee to conduct public hearings across Canada prior to the ratification of the Canada-China FIPA to ensure that the agreement is in the best interests of all Canadians. The Conservatives have long opposed these hearings and today they were joined by the NDP. The Conservatives and the NDP are silencing Canadians and fueling the misinformation and fear-mongering surrounding the agreement.
No one disputes the fact that this investment agreement is unlike any other Canada has signed. China is rapidly growing into a dominant global player, and is Canada’s second largest trading partner. China is also a centralized economy and operates state-owned enterprises for unfair advantage.
The role foreign investment plays in the Canadian economy will remain hugely important going forward. This does not, however, detract in any way from the serious need for Parliament to fulfil its obligation to seek input from Canadians. The Conservatives and NDP must guarantee that this investment agreement with the world’s second largest economy is widely supported and will result in a clear net benefit for Canadian families.
To deny Canadians the opportunity to have their voices heard on this issue is a tremendous disservice and completely inexcusable. The NDP should be ashamed.”
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