Nathan Questions Raw Tar Sands Exports, Demands PM Lives Up to Campaign Promise

Mr. Nathan Cullen (Skeena—Bulkley Valley, NDP): Mr. Speaker, the Prime Minister’s decision to export raw bitumen means that this government will be exporting our jobs to other countries. Jobs in the refining industry are at risk throughout Canada. This decision also puts our energy security in jeopardy.

Why is the government forcing Canada to deal with all the environmental and social problems related to tar sands operations, but exporting the jobs?

Mr. Mike Lake (Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister of Industry, CPC):  Mr. Speaker, the federal government will review Sinopec’s bid, as it does with any other foreign investment. Under the Investment Canada Act, the acquisition of control by a foreign investor of a Canadian business with assets of $299 million or more is subject to review.

As the hon. member knows, the minister only approves applications where an investment demonstrates that it is likely to be of net benefit to Canada.

Mr. Nathan Cullen (Skeena—Bulkley Valley, NDP): Mr. Speaker, Canadians want a government that will stand up for our interests, not one that surrenders our natural wealth to every foreign investor that comes along.

The Prime Minister is breaking his own fundamental promise not to export raw bitumen to countries with lower environmental standards. He is exporting raw resources and Canadian jobs. He is helping triple the tar sands production and rubber-stamping more pipelines that will carry unrefined crude to the U.S. and China. Canada will be left with all the pollution and a government only interested in making friends in Texas and Beijing.

Why is the Prime Minister breaking his own promise to Canadians?

Mr. Mike Lake (Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister of Industry, CPC): Mr. Speaker, notwithstanding the hon. member’s rhetoric, any business, any company that operates in Canada operates under Canadian law.

I will reiterate that the minister only approves applications where an investment demonstrates that it is likely to be of net benefit to Canada. The review process is rigorous, involves consultations with affected provinces and territories and other key stakeholders.