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Minister of Foreign Affairs appearance before the House of Commons Special Committee on Canada-China Relations (CACN) – Briefing material

2020-11-23

Table of contents

Section A: CACN

Scenario note and committee background

Appearance before the house special committee on canada-china relations (cacn) 18:30-20:30 november 23, 2020

Meeting scenario

Committee membership & interests

Liberals

Geoff Regan (Chair)

Emmanuel Dubourg

Peter Fragiskatos

Robert Oliphant

Jean Yip

Lenore Zann

Bloc Québecois

Stéphane Bergeron (Critic, Vice Chair)

NDP

Jack Harris (Critic, Vice Chair)

Conservatives

Garnett Genuis (Critic, Vice Chair)

Michael Chong (Critic)

Pierre Paul-Hus

John Williamson

Cacn committee work

Other committee work

Special Committee on Canada-China Relations (CACN) Backgrounder

Background

The House of Commons Special Committee on Canada-China Relations (CACN) was established as a result of a motion passed by the House of Commons on December 10, 2019. When Parliament was prorogued on August 18, 2020, CACN’s mandate was concluded; however, upon the opening of the second session of the 43rd Parliament on September 23, 2020, CACN was re-established with the same mandate.

The Committee is mandated to conduct hearings to examine and review all aspects of the Canada–China relationship, including, but not limited to, consular, economic, legal, security and diplomatic relations. The Committee will be granted all the powers of a standing committee, as provided in the Standing Orders of the House of Commons. In addition, the mandate specifically grants the Committee authority to order the Prime Minister, Minister of Foreign Affairs, Minister of Public Safety, and Canada’s Ambassador to China to appear as the committee sees fit.

GAC has been heavily implicated in the Committee, including through appearances by the Deputy Minister, Ambassador Barton and other officials. Given the CACN’s broad mandate, several Departments will likely also be engaged including, but not necessarily limited to Justice, Public Safety; Department of National Defence; Innovation, Science and Economic Development; Finance; Agriculture and Agri-food Canada.

Membership

The Committee consists of 12 Members of Parliament (MP), with membership weighted in line with the proportion of sitting MPs from each party.

Committee Operations
Statement by Prime Minister Trudeau

In Question period on December 11, 2019, the Prime Minister made the following mention of the CACN:

Mr. Speaker, over the past year, we have been working at all levels to ensure the safety of the Canadians being detained, and indeed continue to advocate for their release as we stand up for our canola farmers, as we protect our beef and pork exporters and as we continue to engage with this important trading partner, while at the same time standing up for human rights every step of the way.

We recognize there is an opportunity to collaborate further on the special committee on China. We just certainly hope the opposition parties will be careful not to play politics and endanger the lives of those Canadians with it.

Text of the motion establishing the Special Committee:

That, in light of the prolonged diplomatic crisis with China, the House appoint a special committee with the mandate to conduct hearings to examine and review all aspects of the Canada–China relationship, including, but not limited to, consular, economic, legal, security and diplomatic relations:

  1. that the committee be composed of 12 members, of which six shall be government members, four shall be from the official opposition, one shall be from the Bloc Québécois and one from the New Democratic Party;
  2. that changes in the membership of the committee shall be effective immediately after notification by the whip has been filed with the Clerk of the House;
  3. that membership substitutions be permitted, if required, in the manner provided for in Standing Order 114(2);
  4. that the members shall be named by their respective whip by depositing with the Clerk of the House the list of their members to serve on the committee no later than January 15, 2020;
  5. that the Clerk of the House shall convene an organization meeting of the said committee for no later than January 20, 2020;
  6. that the committee be chaired by a member of the government party;
  7. that notwithstanding Standing Order 106(2), in addition to the Chair, there be one vice-chair from the official opposition, one vice-chair from the Bloc Québécois and one vice-chair from the New Democratic Party;
  8. that quorum of the committee be as provided for in Standing Order 118 and that the Chair be authorized to hold meetings to receive evidence and to have that evidence printed when a quorum is not present, provided that at least four members are present, including one member of the opposition and one member of the government;
  9. that the committee be granted all of the powers of a standing committee, as provided in the Standing Orders, as well as the power to travel, accompanied by the necessary staff, inside and outside of Canada;
  10. that the committee have the power to authorize video and audio broadcasting of any or all of its proceedings; and
  11. that the Prime Minister, the Minister of Foreign Affairs, the Minister of Public Safety, and the Canadian ambassador to China be ordered to appear as witnesses from time to time as the committee sees fit.

Member biographies

Hon. Geoff Regan, Chair

(LPC—Halifax West, NS)

Key interests
Parliamentary roles

Regan was elected the 36th Speaker of the House of Commons from 2015-2019. Regan was a member of the Canada-China Legislative Association (CACN) from October 2011 to March 2015. After the 2004 election, Regan was appointed to act as Minister of Justice and Attorney General of Canada in matters related to Maher Arar. Regan served as the Liberal critic for Natural Resources under both Michael Ignatieff and Justin Trudeau. In 2003, he was appointed the Minister of Fisheries and Oceans. During this time, he was also the Regional Minister for Nova Scotia. Regan was appointed Parliamentary Secretary to the Leader of the Government in the House of Commons from 2001 to 2003.

Notable committee membership:
Background

Regan holds a Bachelor of Arts in Political Science from St. Francis Xavier University, and a law degree from Dalhousie University. He was called to the Nova Scotia Bar in 1984. He was first elected to the House of Commons in 1993 and served until his defeat in the 1997 election. Regan was re-elected in the 2000, 2004, 2008, 2011, 2015, and 2019 federal elections.

Statements about China

MP Regan has not made any statements about China in either session of the 43rd Parliament.

Garnett Genuis, Vice-Chair

(CPC—Sherwood Park-Fort Saskatchewan, AB)

Critic for International Development and Human Rights
Key interests
Parliamentary Roles

Garnett Genuis is currently the Conservative Critic for International Development and Human Rights. He previously served as the Conservative Critic for Canada-China Relations and Multiculturalism. MP Genuis has presented a private member’s bill and numerous petitions over the past two parliaments to draw attention to the combat against trafficking in human organs.

Notable committee membership:
Background

MP Genuis was elected to the House of Commons in 2015 and 2019. Prior to his election, he worked the Prime Minister’s Office under Stephen Harper.

MP Genuis grew up in Strathcona County, Alberta. At age 15, he began writing a column for Sherwood Park News, a newspaper that he continues to contribute to as an MP. MP Genuis holds a Bachelor of Public Affairs and Policy Management from Carleton University and Master’s of Science in Philosophy and Public Policy from the London School of Economics (LSE).

Statements on China

MP Genuis is one of the most active and vocal Members of Parliament on China issues and has been highly critical of the Government’s strategy regarding China. In particular, he has questioned the suitability of Ambassador Dominic Barton’s role as Canada’s representative in China, noting the Ambassador’s praise for the Chinese response to the COVID-19 crisis and his apparent lack of knowledge of Huseyincan Celil’s consular situation.

In the 43rd Parliament, MP Genuis has repeatedly raised concerns regarding the Uyghur Muslim population in China, and has introduced petitions, requested late show debates, and asked questions during Question Period. He also played a key role in the Subcommittee on International Human Rights (SDIR)’s work on a study entitled, “Human Rights Situation of the Uyghurs”. During the meetings for this study, MP Genuis focused his questioning on the use of targeted sanctions against Chinese officials, population control, the destruction of Uyghur culture, and supply chains. Outside of parliament, MP Genuis is active on social media, tweeting almost daily about this issue and what he perceives to be lack of action on the part of the Government. MP Genuis follows Mr. Celil’s consular case closely and has met Mr. Celil’s wife, Kamila, several times.

In addition, to his advocacy work regarding the Uyghurs in China, MP Genius is engaged with the situation in Hong Kong. Prior to the committee’s study on Hong Kong, he brought up the topic regularly and strongly advocated for the committee to study Hong Kong. MP Genuis has repeatedly stressed his concern regarding the imposition of the National Security Law (NSL) in Hong Kong, the end of democracy and free press in the city, and the end of the one country two systems model. He has raised concerns for the safety of the 300,000 Canadians living in Hong Kong and Hong Kong pro-democracy activists. He is in support of targeted sanctions on CCP and Hong Kong officials responsible for the implementation of the NSL. He is also supportive of immigration options to protect Canadians and pro-democracy activists and help them seek safe haven in Canada.

MP Genuis was mentioned and quoted in a Globe & Mail article published on July 21, 2020, “Conservative MP Garnett Genuis, a member of [SDIR], said the Liberal government’s ‘complete lack of use’ of Magnitsky sanctions against Chinese officials has been ‘disappointing.’”

MP Genuis has also been vocal about CCP influence in Canada. During the first session of the 43rd Parliament, he introduced a motion calling for CACN to study CCP influence in Canadian universities.

Stéphane Bergeron, Vice-Chair

(BQ—Montarville, QC)

Critic for Foreign Affairs

Key interests
Parliamentary roles

Bergeron is currently the Bloc Québécois’ (BQ) Critic for Foreign Affairs. He is a member of numerous parliamentary associations and interparliamentary groups, particularly the Canada-China Legislative Association (CACN) and the Canadian NATO Parliamentary Association (CANA). He also served as the Whip for the BQ from 1997 to 2001.

Notable committee membership:
Background

Bergeron served as a BQ member of the House of Commons from 1993 to 2005 and a member of Quebec’s National Assembly from 2005 to 2018. In 2019, he returned to the House of Commons as a BQ member.

Bergeron has bachelors and master’s degrees in Political Science. After first leaving the House of Commons and serving in Quebec’s National Assembly for 13 years, Bergeron was Registrar of Rimouski’s CEGEP. He was previously a political advisor and a teaching assistant at the Universite Laval within the Political Science department. From 1984 to 1993 he served in the Canadian Forces as a naval Cadet Instructor Cadre officer.;

Statements about China

MP Bergeron has been supportive of CACN and its mandate since its inception in 2019, stating, “We can speak at length about the reasons the relationship has deteriorated, but there is no denying that Canada-China relations have deteriorated. There is a problem. Once we become aware of the problem what do we do? We can take the Liberal government's approach of late and close our eyes and leave the Canadian ambassador to China post vacant in Beijing for eight months. Yes, I said eight months. That is not a good approach to finding solutions. A minority government needs the good will of the whole House.”

During CACN meetings on the topic of Hong Kong, MP Bergeron has been particularly interested in targeted sanctions levied on CCP and Hong Kong officials as a policy option. He has also asked numerous witnesses about the Sino-British Joint Declaration and its validity under international law, and if the CCP would prevent Hong Kongers from leaving Hong Kong. Further, during the August 17 meeting of CACN, MP Bergeron asked about the impact of the relationship between China and the current administration of the United States on Canada’s relationship with China, asking a witness, “Under the circumstances, is it even possible to form a coalition… with the United States?”

Jack Harris, Vice-Chair 

(NDP—St. John’s East, NL)

Critic for Foreign Affairs

Key interests
Parliamentary roles

MP Harris is currently the NDP’s Critic for Foreign Affairs, Public Safety, and the Atlantic Canada Opportunities Agency. He is also the Deputy Critic for Defence. Among the CACN members, only Harris was a member of the Special Committee on the Canadian Mission in Afghanistan (AFGH) from 2010-2011, experience which is particularly relevant to this special committee in a minority parliament context.

Notable committee membership:
Background

Jack Harris is a lawyer and politician from Newfoundland and Labrador. He has represented St John’s East several times: from 1987-1988, from 2008 to 2015, and winning his seat again in 2019. He was the leader of the Newfoundland and Labrador New Democratic Party from 1992 to 2006.

Statements about China

MP Harris, like MP Bergeron, has been supportive of CACN and its mandate since its inception in 2019.

MP Harris has expressed concerns that Canada has not done enough to protect Hong Kong’s status, as was promised in 1997 upon the signing of the Joint Declaration. He has asked witnesses their recommendations for actions Canada could take to ensure the safe immigration of Hong Kongers to Canada.

MP Harris has asked multiple witnesses at CACN meetings if they believe Canada needs legislation in response to foreign interference by the CCP.

MP Harris was mentioned in a Globe & Mail article published on July 21, 2020, “NDP foreign-affairs critic Jack Harris said that while Magnitsky sanctions are an important tool, it is vital that the government work in concert with other countries to address the situation in China.”

On July 19, 2020, MP Harris released a statement on his website calling on the Government to, “warn and protect Canadian travellers,” related to the NSL. He noted, “These laws extend to foreign nationals and cover activities occurring outside China. Under these new laws, Canadians who have been involved in any activity or public position that the Chinese government considers subversive could be arbitrarily detained and handed over to the Chinese authorities if they stop over in countries that have an extradition agreement with Hong Kong.

Emmanuel Dubourg

(LPC—Bourassa, QC)

Key interests
Parliamentary roles

During the 42nd Parliament, Dubourg served as the Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister of National Revenue. He was a member of the Canadian NATO Parliamentary Association (CANA) from September 2018 to March 2019.

Notable committee membership:
Background

MP Dubourg was born in Saint-Marc, Haiti and emigrated to Canada in 1974. He received a Bachelor of Accounting and a Master of Business Administration. He has been a member of the Ordre des comptables agréés du Québec since 1987. MP Dubourg was a teacher at Université du Québec à Montréal, Université du Québec en Outaouais,. He also worked as a Manager and Advisor at the Canada Revenue Agency.

MP Dubourg has been honoured with several awards and citations for his work over the years, including the Governor General's Medal, the Innovation and Excellence prize from Revenue Canada in 1992 and the Black History Month Award in 2006 for his work in the black community.

MP Dubourg was previously a Member of the National Assembly of Quebec from 2007 to 2013. In 2013, he was elected to the House of Commons as an MP in a by-election.

Statements about China

MP Dubourg does not appear to have any specific interests regarding the Canada-China relationship, and typically asks witnesses for their suggestions as to how Canada can repair its relationship with China.

Outside CACN meetings, MP Dubourg does not make mention of China.

Peter Fragiskatos

(LPC—London North Centre, ON)

Key interests
Parliamentary roles

Fragiskatos is a member of the Canada-China Legislative Association (CACN), and the Canada NATO Parliamentary Association (CANA).

Notable committee membership:
Background

MP Fragiskatos has a Bachelor of Political Science degree from Western University, a Master's in International Relations from Queen’s University, and holds a PhD in International Relations from Cambridge University.

Before being elected to the House of Commons in 2015, MP Fragiskatos was a political scientist at King’s University College at Western University. He also worked as a media commentator. His works have been published by major Canadian and international news organizations including Maclean’s Magazine, The Globe and Mail, The Toronto Star, BBC News, and CNN. MP Fragiskatos served on the Board of Directors of Anago Resources and the Heritage London Foundation.

Statements about China

During the prorogation of parliament between August 18 and September 23, 2020, MP Fragiskatos voiced his interest in seeing CACN return in the second session of the 43rd Parliament, despite being “initially skeptical” when it was created in late-2019.

During CACN meetings, MP Fragiskatos typically asks witnesses about Canadian businesses in China and how they are impacted by the ongoing bilateral tensions between Canada and China.

Outside CACN meetings, MP Fragiskatos does not make much mention of China.

Robert Oliphant

(LPC—Don Valley West, ON)

Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister of Foreign Affairs

Key interests
Parliamentary roles

MP Oliphant was appointed Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister of Foreign Affairs in May 2019 and retained this role in the 43rd Parliament.  

He is actively involved in parliamentary associations. In particular, he has been a member of the Canada-China Legislative Association (CACN) since December 2015. He is also actively involved in the Canada-Africa Parliamentary Association (CAAF).

Oliphant travelled to China with CACN (association) in May 2019 as the Head of Delegation. Given his position as Parliamentary Secretary, this visit marked the first high-level interaction since bilateral irritants between Canada and China began in December 2018.

Notable committee membership:
Background

MP Oliphant was first elected to the House of Commons in October 2008. He was defeated in the 2011 federal election but was re-elected in 2015 and 2019. 

MP Oliphant graduated with a Bachelor of Commerce from the University of Toronto in 1978. During his time at U of T, he was active in the University of Toronto Liberal Club, as well as the Ontario (New) Young Liberals.  After obtaining a Master of Divinity from the Vancouver School of Theology, he was ordained as a United Church Minister in 1984.  His official title is The Reverend Doctor Robert Oliphant, MP.

MP Oliphant worked in Premier David Peterson’s office in 1989. He later worked for two provincial ministers, Christine Hart, Minister of Culture and Communications, and Mavis Wilson, Minister Responsible for Women’s issues.

Statements about China

As Parliamentary Secretary for the Minister of Foreign Affairs, MP Oliphant typically takes on a leadership role among the LPC members of CACN.

Generally, MP Oliphant’s statements in the House regarding China have focused on defending the government’s positions. MP Oliphant raises Canadian consular services abroad in a number of contexts, including committee, social media, and House debate. He has stated a number of times that the return of Michael Kovrig and Michael Spavor are the top priority of the Government.

MP Oliphant frequently defends Canada’s foreign policy, stating it “is based on renewing a rules-based international order that Canadians have built together, protecting universal human rights, supporting democracies,” and noting, “We are a leader in the world on critical issues, whether it is in Venezuela, or in the Middle East or in China, all around the world. We will continue to stand with our allies, with NATO partners, as we continue to ensure Canada's leadership is strong and heard in our world with allies and like-minded who work with us.”

Jean Yip

(LPC—Scarborough-Agincourt, ON)

Key interests
Parliamentary roles

MP Yip serves as Co-Chair of the Liberal Seniors’ Caucus and is a member of the Liberal Party’s Caucuses on Housing Affordability, Immigration, and Mental Health as well as Women’s and Scarborough Caucuses. MP Yip is a member of the Canada-China Legislative Association (CACN) and the Canadian Branch of the Commonwealth Parliamentary Association (CCOM).

Notable committee membership:
Background

MP Yip was elected to the House of Commons via by-election in 2017. Her predecessor was her former husband Arnold Chan who died in 2017.

She was born in Scarborough, and raised in Agincourt, the riding that she now represents. Her mother is from Shanghai and her father is from Canton but spent time in Hong Kong as a police clerk. Both later immigrated to Canada separately. After completing her degree at the University of Toronto, MP Yip pursued a career in insurance and underwriting and holds the Fellow Chartered Insurance Professional Designation.

Statements about China

MP Yip has highlighted cultural aspects of China, rising in the House of Commons in May 2018 to note the importance of Asian Heritage Month. She is active on Twitter and frequently tweets about different cultural events, as well as highlighting local Asian and Asian-inspired restaurants in her riding.

At CACN meetings, MP Yip asks witnesses contextual questions about the situation in China and for updates on the Canada-China relationship.

Outside CACN meetings, MP Yip does not make much mention of China.

Lenore Zann

(LPC—Cumberland-Colchester, NS)

Key interests
Parliamentary roles

Nil 

Notable committee membership:
Background

MP Zann is Australian-Canadian actor and politician. She was elected as a Member of Parliament in 2019. Before entering federal politics, she represented the electoral district of Truro-Bible Hill in the Nova Scotia House of Assembly from 2009 until 2019 as a member of the Nova Scotia New Democratic Party (NDP) and from June 9, 2019 until September 12, 2019 as an Independent.

MP Zann was initially a member of the Nova Scotia New Democratic Party (NDP). During her first term, she was appointed Ministerial Assistant for Culture & Heritage, Environment and Climate Change, and Deputy Premier. Later as a member of the opposition, MP Zann was the NDP spokesperson for Education, Environment, Status of Women, Human Rights Commission, Aboriginal Affairs & Truth & Reconciliation, Agriculture, Advanced Education, African Nova Scotia Affairs, and Gaelic Affairs.

Statements about China

During CACN meetings, MP Zann focuses her questions on the cultural and people-to-people relationships between Canada and China. In doing so, she tries to highlight the Government’s differentiation of the people of China and the Chinese government.

In addition, MP Zann raises the lobster trade between Canada and China at CACN meetings due to the location of her riding.

Outside CACN meetings, MP Yip does not make much mention of China.

Hon. Michael Chong, P.C.

(CPC—Wellington—Halton Hills, ON)

Critic for Foreign Affairs

Key interests
Parliamentary roles

MP Chong is currently serving as the Official Opposition’s Critic for Foreign Affairs. MP Chong served as the President of the Queen’s Privy Council for Canada, the Minister of Intergovernmental Affairs, and the Minister for Sport from February to November 2006. He has been a member of the Canadian NATO Parliamentary Association (CANA), the Canada-China Legislative Association (CACN), and the Canada-United States Inter-Parliamentary Group (CEUS), among others.

Notable committee membership:
Background

MP Chong was first elected to Parliament in 2004 and has been Chair of several House of Commons Standing Committees. He is a co-founder and member of the All Party Climate Caucus since it was formed in 2011. In the 42nd Parliament, MP Chong served as the Official Opposition’s Shadow Minister for Infrastructure and Shadow Minister for Science. In 2016, MP Chong ran for leadership of the CPC, but was unsuccessful.

MP Chong’s father was born in Hong Kong and immigrated to Canada in 1952. His mother immigrated to Canada from the Netherlands in 1960. MP Chong attended Trinity College in the University of Toronto where he obtained a degree in philosophy.

Prior to his election, MP Chong acted as Chief Information Officer for the National Hockey League Players’ Association and as a Senior Technology Consultant to the Greater Toronto Airports Authority for the redevelopment of Pearson International Airport. MP Chong also co-founded the Dominion Institute, now known as Historica Canada, an organization committed to raising Canadians’ awareness of history and civics. He currently sits on its Board of Governors.

Statements about China

On October 12, 2020, MP Chong was directly critical of China, commenting in an interview that COVID-19 is not an excuse to deny consular access to Michael Kovrig and Michael Spavor.

On September 30, 2020, MP Chong stated that China was violating human rights and international treaties in its treatment of Michael Spavor, Michael Kovrig, the Uyghurs, and the people of Hong Kong. He asked if the government would impose sanctions on those responsible in China.

On September 16, 2020, MP Chong posted a readout of his meeting with China’s Ambassador to Canada, H.E. Cong Peiwu. In this readout, MP Chong flagged the detention of Michael Kovrig and Spavor, the National Security Law, and Canadians’ changing attitude toward China.

On December 10, 2019, MP Chong rose in the House of Commons to speak about Canada’s relationship with China. He stated, “I would say this in response to the economic concerns that have been voiced by many about our relationship with China. More important than economic concerns are the principles and values on which this country is founded, principles such as democracy, human rights and the rule of law. Those are the very principles we risk undermining and doing away with if we continue to focus on the economic consequences of taking a reset and decoupling in our China relationship”. He went on to speak about how China has increasingly used economic blackmail, including attacks on Canadian farmers with regards to pork, beef and canola. MP Chong also raised concerns about Uyghurs in concentration camps and Beijing’s systemic campaign to wipe out this population in a genocidal manner. Finally, he asked the government to take a firmer, stronger, and clearer position on Hong Kong.

Pierre Paul-Hus

(CPC—Charlesbourg—Haute-Saint-Charles, Quebec, QC)

Critic for Public Services and Procurement

Key interests:
Parliamentary roles

MP Paul-Hus has been the CPC critic for Public Services and Procurement since 2019, he was also the critic for Public Safety and Emergency Preparedness in 2017. He is a member of the Canadian NATO Parliamentary Association (CANA) and the Canada-United States Inter-Parliamentary Group (CAUS)

Notable committee memberships
Background

MP Paul-Hus is a graduate of political science at Laval University and owner of PRESTIGE Media Group. He is a military officer (Reserve) and a graduate of the Canadian Army Command and Staff College and the Ecole Militaire in Paris, where he also taught. In 1987, he enlisted and joined the Régiment de la Chaudière, reserve unit of the Canadian Armed Forces. During his 22 years of service, he conducted two operational missions: one in Labrador under the aegis of NATO, and the second in Cyprus to the United Nations. He retired in 2009 at the rank of lieutenant colonel. MP Paul-Hus has also been vice president of Sélections Mondiales des Vins Canada (the largest wine competition in North America) for 11 years.

MP Paul-Hus visited Taiwan in January 2018 during which he met the President of Taiwan, Ms. Tsai Ing-Wen.

Statements about China

MP Paul-Hus introduced a motion during the first meeting of CACN, “That the committee study national security issues over four or five meetings, including cyber security and the threat of foreign interference and that the committee provide a report to the House.” This motion passed. He also introduced a motion at the first meeting of OGGO, “That, pursuant to Standing Order 108(2), the committee undertake a study of the Nuctech security equipment contract; that the study start no later than Monday, November 23, 2020; that the committee send for all documents, memorandums, and briefing materials related to the Nuctech security equipment contract; that the documents be provided to the committee, in both official languages, no later than 5 p.m. (Ottawa time) on December 10.” This motion passed.

MP Paul-Hus has raised concerns regarding Huawei, stating, “Trudeau's Liberals have been ignoring Canadian security agencies for months and refusing to take a stand on Huawei's potential participation in Canada's 5G network for purely partisan political reasons. This has put Canada out of the game vis-à-vis our G7 allies, and endangers the future of the Five Eyes intelligence system.”

In February 2020, MP Paul-Hus commented on China’s involvement in 2017 Equifax hack, noting, “It is extremely worrying that this hack is allegedly carried out by members of the Chinese PLA. If this charge were proven in court, it would mean that the PLA deliberately carried out a state-sponsored cyber attack on Canadians in order to steal their personal information. In the digital age, Canadians need to be confident that their personal information is safe and that the Canadian government will protect them from foreign agents who engage in hacking, espionage or any other cyber crime to obtain that information. This means getting tough on cybercriminals and ensuring that they are prosecuted with all the force of the law.”

After a visit to Taiwan in 2018, MP Paul-Hus commented that, “Diplomatic relations between Taiwan and foreign countries are very complicated given its status with China. This is why Canada must get more involved in order to strengthen the friendship and relations between our two countries.”

John Williamson

(CPC—New Brunswick Southwest, NB)

Key interests:
Parliamentary roles

MP Williamson has served as the Vice-Chair for the Canada-United States Inter-Parliamentary Group (CAUS). He has been a member of several other parliamentary associations and interparliamentary groups including the Canadian Branch of the Commonwealth Parliamentary Association (CCOM) and the Canada-China Legislative Association (CACN).

Notable committee membership:
Background

MP Williamson was elected to the House of Commons in the 2011 Federal Election. Prior to his election, he was the director of communications in Stephen Harper’s Prime Minister’s Office (PMO) from 2009 until 2011. MP Williamson was defeated in the 2015 election, but was re-elected in 2019.

MP Williamson graduated from McGill University with a Bachelor of Arts in economics and political science. He later obtained a Master's Degree in economic history from the London School of Economics. He worked for the National Post as an editorial writer and was a founding member of their editorial board. He was a national director of the Canadian Taxpayers Federation and was their national spokesperson from January 2004 to September 2008.

Statements about China

During CACN meetings, MP Williamson regularly raises concerns for the deteriorating democracy and free press in Hong Kong since the introduction of the NLS. MP Williamson has also asked witnesses if they believe Taiwan will be subject to a similar national security law in the future.

In March 2020, MP Williamson tabled a motion, “That the committee express its grave concern over the arrest of Jimmy Lai Chee-ying, Lee Cheuk-yan and Yeung Sum in Hong Kong, and that this be reported to the House.” The motion passed, and was subsequently reported to the House.

In 2013, MP Williamson noted that, “While [the CPC] create better policy in Canada, the Liberal leader admires China’s basic dictatorship.”

Reports on CACN and SDIR meetings

Report on Committee Hearing

Name of committee: Special Committee on Canada-China Relations (CACN)

Report prepared by:  Eileen Young, Cabinet and Parliamentary Affairs Division, Global Affairs Canada

Date and time: January 20, 2020, 1:00-3:15pm

Location: West Block, 225-A

Topic: Election of Chair

Members present:

LPC: Hon. Geoff Regan, Jean Yip, Lenore Zann, Marie-France Lalonde (sitting in for Emmanuel Dubourg), Peter Fragiskatos, Robert Oliphant (Parliamentary Secretary – Foreign Affairs)

CPC: Don Albas, Leona Alleslev, Todd Doherty (sitting in for John Williamson), Michael Barrett (sitting in for Chris Warkentin)

BQ: Stéphane Bergeron

NDP: Rachel Blaney (sitting in for Jack Harris)

Summary:

The House Special Committee on Canada-China Relations held its first meeting today from 1pm to 3:15pm.  The committee elected Geoff Regan (LPC) as the Chair and three Vice Chairs: Chris Warkentin (CPC), Stéphane Bergeron (BQ) and Jack Harris (NDP).  It was agreed to form a Sub-committee on Agenda and Procedure with five members. It was agreed that the sub-committee would meet as soon as possible.  A motion was also agreed that Ambassador Dominic Barton will be invited to appear before the Committee no later than February 7, 2020, for a two-hour televised appearance with 20 minutes of remarks; this appearance is to be preceded by briefings, sometime before February 7th, by  Government of Canada departmental officials to give everyone a similar starting point of understanding.  The topics, dates and officials to appear to brief the committee have not yet been determined. Discussions focussed on the possibility of the committee meeting on Mondays for three hours from 10am to 1pm. Nevertheless, a final decision has been referred to the subcommittee. During the course of the meeting, passing reference was made by different members to the detention of Canadians in China and financial losses of $1 billion for Canada’s canola farmers. Committee members were eager to launch their work without delay.

Overview of meeting:

The inaugural meeting of the Special Committee on Canada-China Relations (CACN) began with the election of the Chair. As per the motion, the Chair was required to be a member of the government (LPC). Parliamentary Secretary Robert Oliphant nominated the Honourable Geoff Regan (former Speaker of the House of Commons) to be Chair. Regan was acclaimed unanimously into his role. As Chair, Regan called for the election of vice chairs from the NDP, the CPC, and the BQ. MP Leona Alleslev (CPC) put forward Mark Warkentin as Vice-Chair, who was acclaimed unanimously into his role. As the BQ and NDP only have one member each sitting on the committee, Stéphane Bergeron (BQ) and Jack Harris (NDP) were acclaimed unanimously into their positions.

Routine motions:

Fragiskatos (LPC) moved that Library of Parliament analysts be retained by the committee. This motion was carried.

Fragiskatos (LPC) then moved for a sub-committee on agenda and procedures be struck and the composition of the committee should be six (6) members of CACN: the Chair, the three Vice-Chairs, the Parliamentary Secretary, and one other members from the government. There was some disagreement from the opposition regarding the makeup of the subcommittee, with Dan Albas (CPC) noting that most sub-committees have five (5) members sitting on it, not six (6), and there is generally no requirement for the PS to sit on the sub-committee. PS Oliphant then noted that the proposed makeup of the sub-committee reflected the Special Committee, and the makeup of the House of Commons more generally. CPC moved a motion to amend the makeup of the committee. The motion carried. PS Oliphant then moved to amend the motion, changing the language slightly, stating that the committee will use a process of consensus decision-making. There was some back and forth between the LPC and MP Leona Alleslev (CPC) about the definition of this this term. MP Stéphane Bergeron (BQ) moved a sub-amendment to change “consensus” to “spirit of collaboration”. The motion with Bergeron’s (BQ) sub-amendment was carried.

Fragiskatos (LPC) moved that opening statements from witnesses be 10 minutes long, followed by questioning. He outlined the order of the rounds and the length of questioning time per round. The motion was carried.

Fragiskatos (LPC) moved a motion regarding the distribution of documents. All documents will be distributed by the Clerk only once they are available in both official languages. The motion was carried.

Fragiskatos (LPC) moved that the Clerk be able to order coordinate meals when the committee is meeting. The motion was carried.

Fragiskatos (LPC) moved that witnesses' expenses will be covered up to a certain threshold. The motion was carried.

Fragiskatos (LPC) moved that one staff member from each member’s office be allowed to be present during in camera meetings. The motion was carried.

Fragiskatos (LPC) moved that in camera transcripts will be kept in the Clerk’s office and be available for viewing by the committee members. The motion was carried.

Fragiskatos (LPC) moved that notices of substantive motions must be given to the Clerk 48 hours in advance. The notice should be filed no later than 4pm (EST), Monday-Friday, in both official languages. The motion was carried.

Todd Doherty (CPC) moved that all meetings, except those in camera, be televised, if possible, or webcast. The motion was carried.

Alleslev (CPC) moved “That the committee invite the Ambassador of Canada to the People’s Republic of China, Mr. Dominic Barton to appear in person before the committee for a two-hour televised meeting on Monday, January 27, 2020. That Mr. Barton be given 20 minutes to update the committee on the state of relations between Canada and the People’s Republic of China and that the remaining time be allotted for questions and comments from the Members of the committee.” Alleslev noted that it was extremely important to hear from Ambassador Barton immediately, as he is best placed to explain the Canada-China relationship, as the Government’s “point man” on this file. PS Oliphant agreed that Ambassador Barton should be the committee’s first witness but impressed upon the committee that other officials would be better placed to brief, then the committee members would be poised to ask the best questions. The opposition did not generally agree with this. PS Oliphant suggested that they meet with the Ambassador as soon as possible but that the committee needs to have the sub-committee meet before the Ambassador appears. Albas (CPC) suggested a three-hour meeting on January 27 to include the Ambassador, USS and the National Security Advisor (NSA). It was decided the sub-committee would meet as soon as possible. They can then issue a report so the business of the committee can start as soon as possible. The committee will be briefed in advance of an appearance by the Ambassador. The Ambassador will appear no later than February 7, in a two hour long televised appearance. The Ambassador will have 20 minutes for opening remarks, with the rest of the time set aside for questioning.

Discussion of meeting times and frequency. Options were Monday from 11am-1pm, or Thursday from 5:30pm-7:30pm and Friday 8:45am-10:45am. CPC suggested one three (3) hour meeting on Mondays from 10am-1pm. There was general agreement; however, no decision was made and the subject was relayed to the sub-committee for decision since two of the Vice-Chairs were not present and able to confirm their agreement.

Report on Committee Hearing

Name of committee: Special Committee on Canada-China Relations

Report prepared by: Cabinet and Parliamentary Affairs, Global Affairs Canada

Date and time: January 30, 2020, 9:30am-11:30am

Location: West Block, 035-B

Topic: Canada-China Relations

Members present:

LPC: Hon. Geoff Regan, Lenore Zann, Emmanuel Dubourg, Peter Fragiskatos, Robert Oliphant (Parliamentary Secretary – Foreign Affairs), Jean Yip (departed at 10:05), Sean Casey (replaced Yip at 10:05)

CPC: Leona Alleslev, John Williamson, Chris Warkentin, Stephanie Kusie (replacing Dan Albas)

BQ: Stéphane Bergeron

NDP: Jack Harris

Other MPs present: John Manley (Green Party)

Witnesses:

From 9:30-10:30:

Marta Morgan, Deputy Minister of Foreign Affairs (GAC)

Paul Thoppil, Assistant Deputy Minister – Asia (GAC)

Cindy Termorshuizen, Director General, International Security Policy Bureau (GAC)

From 10:30-11:30:

Steve Verheul, Assistant Deputy Minister, Trade Policy and Negotiations (GAC)

Fred Gorrell, Assistant Deputy Minister, International Affairs Branch (AAFC)

Duane McMullen Director General, Trade Commissioner Service – Operations (GAC)

Doug Forsyth, Director General, Market Access (GAC)

François Rivest, Executive Director, Greater China (GAC)

Overview of meeting:

Officials from Global Affairs Canada (GAC) appeared before CACN, with support from Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada (AAFC) to brief committee members on Canada-China bilateral relations.  Deputy Minister of Foreign Affairs, Marta Morgan, led the first hour, with the second hour led by ADM Trade Policy and Negotiations, Steve Verheul. MP questions focused on: Canada’s overall strategy toward China; the effectiveness of Canada’s engagement, and that of like-mined partners, in the case of the arbitrary detention of Michael Kovrig and Michael Spavor; deteriorating bilateral trade relations; the size of the trade deficit with China; and, market access issues such as canola and (now resolved) pork.  Opposition MPs questioned the government’s ability to advance the release of arbitrarily detained Canadians, and suggested there was little progress over the last 14 months. They also suggested that the poor state of bilateral relations was impeding Canada from expeditiously evacuating Canadians from Wuhan amidst the coronavirus outbreak.

Opening Remarks:

DM Morgan delivered opening remarks covering overall bilateral relations and its great complexity. She touched on key issues such as the arbitrary detention of Michael Kovrig and Michael Spavor; the arbitrary sentencing of Robert Schellenberg; rule of law; human rights, with special reference to Xinjiang and Hong Kong; trade relations; people to people ties; and ongoing engagement.  

Mr. Verheul led the trade briefing, delivering opening remarks that noted the size and importance of the bilateral trade and investment relationship and its growth over recent years. He touched on key issues including the ongoing irritants, notably canola, and stressed the importance of continued engagement with China. He also addressed the ongoing United States-China trade dispute and spoke to the potential implications, both negative and positive, for Canada of the “phase one” recently announced United States-China trade deal.

Overview of Questions:

CPC: MP Alleslev began, asking about deteriorating bilateral relations with China: what progress has been made; exactly what actions have occurred in the last 14 months; and what direction DM Morgan had been given to prevent the further decline of Canada’s relationship with China. DM Morgan provided details of Canada’s diplomatic engagement with China, up to the ministerial level, and Canada’s engagement with like-minded countries, including 14 that have publicly indicated their support for Canada in the case of the arbitrary detention of Michael Kovrig and Michael Spavor. MP Alleslev followed up, asking what actions Canada has taken to translate other countries’ support into quantifiable results. MP Alleslev further questioned the effectiveness of U.S. support for Canada given that the United States has recently announced a trade agreement with China. DM Morgan affirmed strong support from the United States and gave examples of some U.S. actions, including speaking out publicly on this issue and resolutions in the U.S. House of Representatives.

Later, MP Warkentin questioned ADM Paul Thoppil on media reports from July 2019 that suggested he reached out to two former Ambassadors and asked them to “run future communications through the department so that they not speak freely”. MP Warkentin ask what prompted him to make those calls.  When Mr. Thoppil explained that such outreach is routine, and MP Warkentin wanted to know who had directed him to make those calls. Mr. Thoppil explained that “we initiate such calls on our own”. Later, MP Warkentin questioned Canada’s decision to send a “large” military delegation to a sporting competition in China in October 2019, suggesting that it sent the wrong message to China.  In the trade portion of the appearance, MP Warkentin requested information on Canada’s trade deficit with China and commented on the resolution of the pork issues. He asked if it was the view of the department that the pork issue had been resolved due to market demand in China. Mr. Verheul responded that the pork issue had been more of a technical problem of certification around use of illegal Canadian export certificates and that we had not seen political interference in that issue. Mr. Gorrell echoed Mr. Verheul’s comments, explained how Canada had worked to resolve the issue and confirmed demand for Canada’s high-quality pork. MP Warkentin asked about canola pests and whether this was an issue with processed exports of canola to China. MP Warkentin also asked whether the department had any evidence that the “quarter billion dollars that Canada sent to the Asia Infrastructure Fund” has resulted in an increase in Canadian investment or exports. Jean-François Rivest responded that he did not have any specific examples.

MP Williamson asked DM Morgan if the Government had a “country strategy” for China, and if the Government had a “global power strategy” for Russia, the United States, and China. DM Morgan undertook to provide more information to the committee on Canada’s approach to China.  Finally, MP Williamson asked if DM Morgan was not more than just “sad” regarding the detention of Canadians in China, asking if she was not “outraged”.

LPC: Questions from the LPC noted that Canada’s position as a middle power dictates its foreign policy and that Canada is not unique in experiencing challenges with China. Broad lines of questioning focused on enquiring about engaging like-minded countries, the efforts by the Government of Canada to engage with China through multilateral institutions, and people-to-people ties with China through culture and sport. Further, MP Zann enquired what Canada is doing to advocate for the Uighurs. During the trade portion of the briefing, questions from the LPC focused on the impacts of coronavirus including on Canadian exports of lobsters, product inspections, and the impact of the US/China trade agreement on Canadian exports to China.  Additionally, PS Oliphant asked whether there was a policy to diversify trade away from China, and whether GAC helped support any specific industries in their efforts to export their products abroad.   

NDP: MP Jack Harris noted that China’s Ambassador to Canada stated in May 2019 that Canada-China relations were at a “freezing point” and that “Canada ought to stop the moves that undermine the interests of China”. He asked whether DM Morgan knew what the Chinese Ambassador meant by this. DM Morgan responded that China has taken a very strong, firm public position on the case of Meng Wangzhou. She said she could not speak for the Government of China and suggested the committee could invite the Chinese Ambassador to get further insight. MP Harris requested the names of the 14 other countries that have supported Canada’s advocacy on the arbitrary detention of Michael Kovrig and Michael Spavor, noting that 14 is a very small number. MP Harris questioned whether Michael Kovrig’s status as a diplomat would provide extra leverage to have him released and suggested that other countries should be concerned by this issue because it impacts the international community/diplomacy writ large. During the trade portion of the briefing, Harris asked about the process for resolving the ongoing issue with canola, including whether the pace for resolution was progressing along normal timelines. He also enquired about addressing the issue through the World Trade Organization compared to bilateral engagement.

Bloc Quebeçois: MP Bergeron noted that the Chinese would be following this appearance closely. He then made mention of Canada’s previously strong relations with China and referred how the unfortunate incident of the arrest of Meng Wanzhou had changed this, making Canada the battle ground for two superpowers in their negotiations. MP Bergeron also asked why Ms. Meng had been arrested given that her actions were not a crime in Canada. DM Morgan responded that Canada was abiding by its legal obligations. MP Bergeron was also critical of the number of months that Canada’s position of Ambassador to China remained vacant before the appointment of Ambassador Barton, suggesting it must have given China the impression that the arrest of Michael Kovrig and Michael Spavor was really not an important issue for Canada. On trade issues, MP Bergeron enquired about the history of trade liberalization efforts with China, including the unsuccessful talks in 2017 regarding a Canada-China free trade agreement. Mr. Verheul noted that analysis and scoping exercise concluded that the two countries had divergent interest and priorities for an FTA, therefore the timing was not right to pursue further discussions in 2017. However, Canada remains interested in exploring the possibility for future growth in the Chinese market.  MP Bergeron asked for Mr. Verheul’s view on the Chinese practice of dumping of aluminum of inferior quality in North America. Mr. Verheul acknowledged the resulting market distortions from steel and aluminum dumping and responded that Canada had put in place numerous measure and undertaken discussions with United States and Mexico regarding impacts on the North American market.

Follow-up: It was requested that GAC provide: a list of countries who have advocated publicly and privately on behalf of Michael Kovrig and Michael Spavor, the population of the Uighurs, the Government’s strategy towards China, and a list of ministerial travel to China since 2015.

Next meeting: Tuesday, February 4, 2020 – 10:00am-12:00pm – appearance from GAC on consular from 10:00-11:00am, followed by an appearance from Justice Canada on extradition from 11:00am-12:00pm.

Report on Committee Hearing

Name of committee: Special Committee on Canada-China Relations

Report prepared by: Cabinet and Parliamentary Affairs, Global Affairs Canada

Date and time: February 4, 2020, 10:00am-12:00pm

Location: West Block, 035-B

Topic: Canada-China relations

Members present:

LPC: Hon. Geoff Regan, Lenore Zann, Emmanuel Dubourg, Peter Fragiskatos, Robert Oliphant (Parliamentary Secretary – Foreign Affairs), Jean Yip

CPC: Dan Albas, Stephanie Kusie (replacing) Leona Alleslev, Garrett Genuis (replacing John Williamson), Joël Godin (replacing John Williamson) Chris Warkentin

BQ: Stephane Bergeron

NDP: Jack Harris

Overview of meeting:

Officials from Global Affairs Canada (GAC) and the Department of Justice (Justice) appeared before CACN to brief committee members on consular services and extradition. Heather Jeffrey, Assistant Deputy Minister, Consular, Security and Emergency Management led the first hour, and Owen Rees, Deputy Assistant Deputy Attorney General (DADAG), Justice led the second hour. A full list of witnesses can be found at the bottom of this report.

ADM Jeffrey delivered opening remarks covering consular services at GAC, with a focus on the People’s Republic of China. ADM Jeffrey referenced the tools GAC uses to ensure the safety of Canadians abroad; the Vienna Convention on Consular Relations; the consular issues in China; and, high profile consular cases. DADAG Rees delivered opening remarks providing an overview of the extradition process in Canada including Canada’s extradition framework; the role of the Minister of Justice; Canada’s extradition partners; and, the steps which Canada follows to extradite a person to another country.

Questioning began with the CPC, who raised the ongoing coronavirus outbreak in China and asked for clarification on how consular officials will treat permanent residents of Canada and Canadian citizens when conducting evacuations from Wuhan province. Questions were also raised regarding the op-eds written by former government officials discussing a prisoner exchange. MP Genuis questioned whether these comments were helpful to the advocacy being undertaken by Canadian consular officials. MP Kusie asked a number of specific questions including who the Head of Mission in Beijing reports to in Ottawa; the GAC consular official(s) who have worked on Kovrig and Spavor’s cases; and the casework notes. She then asked why Canada’s response time regarding the coronavirus outbreak was slow compared to other countries. ADM Jeffrey noted that there is no Canadian consulate in Wuhan, and that GAC has been providing services through the consulate in Shanghai. MP Kusie then asked that the consular plan of Canada’s mission in Shanghai and the plan of the rapid deployment team be tabled with the committee. MP Albas suggested that there is a lack of transparency from the Government of Canada related to consular issues, as MPs can no longer reach out directly to missions and consulates with questions on consular cases. He asked for the number of Canadians in mainland China and Hong Kong, and the number of active consular cases in China. ADM Jeffrey responded that Canada does not track Canadian travel abroad unless they register with the Government, and then provided the number of active cases (26, 000). Questioning on extradition began with MP Warkentin asking for confirmation that there was no political intervention when Ms. Meng was arrested. DADAG confirmed that is correct. Warkentin then inquired about a hypothetical situation in which Canada could consider a prisoner exchange. MP Albas asked if the Minister of Justice could be lobbied by other members of Cabinet to drop an extradition case. He then asked how the Chinese government found out about the arrest of Ms. Meng, as the media reported Huawei informed them. MP Genuis asked about the Prime Minister’s joint statement with China regarding the intent to negotiate an extradition agreement. He asked to hear about the context of this agreement as well as the plan for negotiating this agreement. DG Henchey noted that no formal discussions had taken place.

Questions from the LPC focused on understanding the planning process for responding to an international health crisis. PS Oliphant asked how relations between Canadian and Chinese officials were working during the current (coronavirus) crisis. MP Yip asked several questions related to consular cases, many of which could not be answered due to the Privacy Act; however, MP Jeffrey noted that there are currently two Canadians on death row in China (publicly available information). MP Zann asked what officials are recommending Canadians do to protect themselves against the coronavirus. ADM Jeffrey highlighted the cooperation between GAC and the Public Health Agency of Canada (PHAC). In the questioning on extradition, MP Fragistakos reiterated that the Prime Minister and the Government of Canada have been unequivocal that a prisoner exchange is not being considered and will not be considered. He then asked what kind of information is sought in mutual legal assistance questions. MP Fragistakos asked what “double criminality” means. DG Henchey noted that, in Canada, if a person’s actions are considered criminal in Canada and in the country requesting extradition then they can be extradited based on “double criminality”. MP Oliphant focused his questions to Justice on the process of the authority to proceed part of the extradition process, asking who the authority was delegated to.

From the BQ, MP Bergeron enquired is there is a direct line that parliamentarians could call should they need to discuss a constituent’s consular issue. He then focused questioning on the bilateral consular agreement between Canada and China, asking whether the agreement had been violated, and if being denied access to a detained Canadian was a breach of the agreement. He asked how many consular visits Kovrig and Spavor had received, the length of those visits, the condition of their detained, and if these visits constituted adequate access. ADM Jeffrey explained that the Government of Canada always advocates for more access to detained Canadians but would not be sharing additional details due to the Privacy Act. Bergeron concluded by asking whether ADM Jeffery thought the Committee would have difficulty if it wished to travel to China (e.g. visas, travel advisories etc.). During questioning for Justice, MP Bergeron outlined why he believed a prisoner exchange was unacceptable.

MP Harris (NDP) continued with the initial CPC line of questioning, asking about permanent residents and if the Government would be happy to bring them back, along with citizens. ADM Jeffrey answered that the Government of Canada was working with Chinese officials to keep families together as much as possible. Harris then asked about the travel advisory to China, and if that the recommendation of non-essential travel to China was instated following the detention of Kovrig and Spavor, or if caution had always been recommended when travelling to China. ADM Jeffrey noted that the advice prior to the arbitrary detention of Kovrig and Spavor recommended exercising a high degree of caution; however, in January 2019 GAC updated the advice to indicate that travelers should be aware of the arbitrary enforcement of local laws. Harris then asked if there are other Canadians who the Government believes to be arbitrarily detained. ADM Jeffrey answered that there are several arbitrary detentions across the world, but that Kovrig and Spavor are the only two arbitrarily detained Canadians in China. Harris posed questions to Justice clarifying the Minister of Justice’s involvement in the extradition process, and whether it would be possible for the Minister to withdraw an extradition case.

Officials who appeared before CACN:

Consular – 10:00-11:00am, witnesses:

Heather Jeffrey, Assistant Deputy Minister, Consular, Security and Emergency Management, GAC

Brian Szwarc, Director General, Consular Operations, GAC

Extradition – 11:00am-12:00pm, witnesses: 

Owen Rees, Deputy Assistant Deputy Attorney General, Justice
Janet Henchey, Senior General Counsel and Director General, International Assistance Group, Justice

Follow up:

Next meeting: On February 5, 2020, the Canadian Ambassador to the People’s Republic of China, Dominic Barton, will appear before the committee from 5:30pm-7:30pm.

Report on Committee Hearing

Name of committee: Special Committee on Canada-China Relations

Report prepared by: Cabinet and Parliamentary Affairs, Global Affairs Canada

Date and time: February 5, 2020, 5:30pm-7:45pm

Location: Wellington Building, Room 415

Topic: Canada-China relations

Members present:

LPC: Hon. Geoff Regan, Lenore Zann, Emmanuel Dubourg, Peter Fragiskatos, Robert Oliphant (Parliamentary Secretary – Foreign Affairs), Jean Yip

CPC: Dan Albas, Leona Alleslev, Chris Warkentin, Garnett Genuis (replacing John Williamson)

BQ: Stephane Bergeron

NDP: Jack Harris

Additional MPs: Michael Levitt (LPC), Paul Manly (Green Party)

Overview of meeting:

The House of Commons Special Committee on Canada-China Relations (CACN) met to hear from Canada’s Ambassador to China, Dominic Barton. His remarks addressed the status on the evacuation of Canadians in Wuhan, and detailed his three main priorities: securing the release of Michael Kovrig and Michael Spavor, and clemency for Robert Schellenberg; promoting and protecting human rights; and deepening and broadening the relationship – including restoring market access for canola.

Genuis’ (CPC) first two rounds of questions focused largely on whether Barton’s previous role within McKinsey & Company should disqualify him to represent Canada as Ambassador to China. He asked about the firm’s association with Chinese state-owned enterprises, construction in the South China Sea, and the choice of Xinjiang for a corporate retreat— in close proximity to Uyghur detention camps. In Genuis’ final round he asked about the Ambassador’s engagement on the Huseyincan Celil consular case, and whether Canada’s supports calls for universal suffrage in Hong Kong.

MP Alleslev (CPC) asked Barton about his comments on deepening relations with China and suggested that it would simply make Canadian commercial interests more vulnerable to Chinese retaliation.  She asked about the separation between state and commercial interests in China and an increasing trend of including government officials on the boards of Chinese companies.

MP Albas (CPC) pursed questions on the Ambassador’s contacts with Huawei since assuming his role, asking with whom he met, when, and what was discussed, including whether he raised the detention of Michael Kovrig and Michael Spavor to Huawei officials, and whether Huawei had raised the question of a “prisoner swap”. Barton answered that he had not discussed a prisoner exchange. Albas then asked if the Ambassador would be involved in advising Minister Blair on 5G. He closed by asking about the Ambassador’s position on Hong Kong and universal suffrage and Taiwan’s participation in the WHO, and other multilateral institutions.

MP Warkentin (CPC) opened by saying that Canadians are feeling bullied by China, including market access restrictions. He referred to Barton’s opening statement, asking why the Ambassador said that the restoration of the pork market was a positive sign, when most Canadians believe it was an arbitrary decision to shut out Canadian pork. Warkentin asked if the Ambassador believed that the ban was lifted because of the reconciliation of documents or if it was because the Chinese were indicating good will. The Ambassador answered that a mistake was made, and with good efforts from the Meat Council, Agriculture Canada, and others in the industry it was resolved. Warkentin then pivoted questioning to canola, stating that most Canadians believe that the canola issue is “simply retaliation for a relationship gone sideways”. The Ambassador said, “I do think that that was a punishment, if you will,” noting that going to the World Trade Organization has led to constructive discussions. Warkentin then noted how lengthy a WTO challenge is an asked what other avenues Canada could use to address the issue.

In contrast, with the CPC, MP Bergeron (BQ) noted that he believes that Barton’s experience to date with China specifically qualifies him to shepherd Canada’s relations with China. He drew an association between the Ambassador’s appointment and the restoration of Canadian pork access to China, but also sought to emphasize the negative impact that the eight-month vacancy between Ambassadors had on Canada’s ability to advance the relationship. Bergeron asked how Canada can be assured that engaging other countries in advocating for Canada’s position on the detentions is a good idea considering the umbrage the Chinese Foreign Ministry has publicly taken over Canada engaging the United States on the issue.

MP Harris (NDP) acknowledged the efforts of the Ambassador so far. He questioned whether Barton’s past private sector role could be a conflict of interest. He asked about the Ambassador’s “bullish” comments on the Belt and Road initiative.  He also asked about the proximity of the McKinsey retreat to the Xinjiang Uyghur detention camps. Harris asked if there are additional levers Barton has identified to advance Canada’s position with China. He expressed his concern that an unknown number of countries are not willing to go on the record publicly as supporting Canada’s position even as we say they have expressed concerns privately to the Chinese government.

MP Manly (Green) was present observing the committee and was granted the opportunity to asked Barton a question. He asked how the Ambassador thinks Canada is going to navigate being between China and the United States on the 5G issue. The Ambassador noted that he would not be taking part in the issue of 5G.

The LPC posed questions about the current efforts to evacuate Canadian citizens from China in the context of the coronavirus. Both PS Oliphant and MP Zann focused their questions on the Ambassador’s belief that engagement is the best way forward in working on Canada’s relationship with China. The Ambassador noted that there are opportunities and common areas to engage on with the Chinese and that many items on each country’s agenda are similar. PS Oliphant asked if the Ambassador was hopeful. The Ambassador said he is optimistic. MP Fragistakos asked the Ambassador to outline his key message for Canadians regarding China, and what success would look like. The Ambassador explained his belief for a long-term approach to China he said he will view his mandate as successful when Michael Spavor and Michael Kovrig are freed and back in Canada, and for Robert Schellenberg to be removed from death row.

Officials who appeared before CACN:

Follow-up:

Next meeting: TBC

Report on Committee Hearing

Name of committee: Special Committee on Canada-China Relations

Report prepared by: Cabinet and Parliamentary Affairs, Global Affairs Canada

Date and time: February 24, 2020, 10:00am-1:00pm

Location: Wellington Building, Room 415

Topic: Canada-China relations

Members present:

LPC: Hon. Geoff Regan, Lenore Zann, Emmanuel Dubourg, Peter Fragiskatos, Robert Oliphant (Parliamentary Secretary – Foreign Affairs), Jean Yip

CPC: Dan Albas, Leona Alleslev, Garnett Genuis, John Williamson)

BQ: Stephane Bergeron

NDP: Jack Harris

Overview of meeting:

The House of Commons Special Committee on Canada-China Relations (CACN) met to hear from two panels of academics. The first panel met from 10:00am-11:30am, and the second panel from 11:30am-1:00pm. See full list of witnesses below.

Charles Burton (Macdonald-Laurier Institute), noted differences between his interpretations of the Canada-China relationship and the testimony given to the Committee by the Government of Canada on Canada’s relations with China. He then provided recommendations to the Committee “on how to more effectively further Canada’s interests in our relations with China.”

Phil Calvert (University of Alberta) opened by providing context for China’s approach to diplomacy, explaining “China is complex and full of contradictions,” and noting that China uses a “reward-and-punishment approach to relations with all but the most powerful countries”. He outlined ways in which Canada can successfully manage relations with China, and cautioned the Government against viewing China through “a preconceived ideological or political lens or through a single issue,” as this prevents a complex understanding of China and Canada’s relationship with it.

Paul Evans (University of British Columbia) noted that once controversies between Canada and China are resolved, it is “unlikely” that “we can revert to normal in our bilateral diplomatic relations.” Evans made three recommendations: that Canada adopt a flexible policy framework for engaging with China; that Canada “recapture a middle power identity” by including China in the rules-based international order, whilst reforming institutions like the World Trade Organization, the International Monetary Fund, and the Word Bank; and, finally, that Canada promote a higher level of “awareness and vigilance needed to protect Canadian values and institutions at home.”

Jeremy Paltiel (Carleton University) gave an overview of Canada-China relations, from 1968 forward, in order to explain the context of Canada’s relationship with China. He urged Members to not “remake China in our own image, but to co-operate in areas of common interest and to reserve a space where critical concerns will be listened to on the basis of reciprocity.”

Yves Tiberghien (University of British Columbia) referenced to the general disruption in global politics; key aspects of the international system as they related to Canada-China relations, including globalization, shifts in economic systems, shifts of economic power, China’s growth, and changes to American foreign policy under President Trump; and, general points on China and their implications for Canada.

Carlo Dade and Sharon Zhengyang Sun (Canada West Foundation (CWF)) shared a general narrative about Western Canada’s interactions with China, in particular, trade relations. CWF made three main points: Canada’s relation with China flows through the West; agriculture is a key part of the Canada-China relationship; and, agriculture may offer an idea of what the solution could be or how to imagine re-engagement.

Questions by CACN Members

MP Albas began by referencing the book “Destined for War: Can America and China Escape Thucydides’ Trap?”, noting that, according to the author, when a rising power threatens to displace a ruling power, there can be violent clash. He asked the first panel if the world is “facing a Thucydides’ trap with the rise of China.” Paul Evans responded saying that there is a likelihood that unless the rivalry is mitigated, the US and China could be destined for conflict.

Genuis’ (CPC) focused his questions on Dr. Tiberghien and his work on the China Council at the University of British Columbia. Genuis’ questions culminated in a verbal notice of motion: That the committee undertake a study of no fewer than four meetings into the relationship between Canadian universities and Chinese government-controlled entities, and that as part of that study the committee hear from the co-chairs of the UBC China Council, and that the committee report its findings to the House.

MP Alleslev (CPC) asked what specific actions can be taken to engage and strengthen collective approaches with like-minded countries who may be in similar situations.

MP Williamson (CPC) opened his questioning by asking for confirmation that the comments from the panelists “run counter from what” the committee heard “from the Government of Canada policy- both from the ambassador, as well as high ranking officials.” Williamson then asked if pursuing a trade agreement would be prudent at this time.

MP Bergeron (BQ) asked if Canada was well-equipped in terms of personnel and analysts to manage the paradigm shift that Canada is witnessing in relation to China. Bergeron also asked if there was a connection between the attitudes and personal beliefs of the current President of China and the paradigm shift in Canada-China relations. Bergeron noted the difference in advice between the two panels stating that the first witnesses called for a firmer stance on China, whereas the second panel seemed to call for more collaboration.

MP Harris (NDP) referenced a report from the United Kingdom’s House of Commons recommending that the UK adjust its approach to China, including producing a detailed, public facing document defining the UK’s China strategy. He asked whether it would be realistic for the Government of Canada to adopt a similar approach.  Harris also asked if there were any channels available to advocate for human rights in addition to public statements and “normal diplomatic channels”. He also asked if Canada should pursue a similar strategy to the UK in relation to Huawei, and if it is worth engaging with China in a rules-based system when there is no “guarantees that [China is] actually following those rules?”

The LPC posed questions to witnesses related to the actions they believed the government could take in order to forward relations with China, and what strategies and tactics other countries in similar situations have done to manage their relationship with China. Additionally, questions were posed regarding the areas in which we can currently collaborate with China (environment, health, peacekeeping etc.). MP Zann asked what the outcomes/consequences would be of taking a hard line on Chinese actions Canada disagreed with.

Officials who appeared before CACN:

10:00am to 11:30am:

11:30am-1:00pm:

Follow-up:

Next meeting:

Tuesday, February 25, 2020 – House of Commons Subcommittee on Agenda and Procedure of the Special Committee on Canada-China Relations (SCAC)

Monday, March 9, 2020 – CACN meeting, subject/witnesses TBC

Report on Committee Hearing

Name of committee: Special Committee on Canada-China Relations

Report prepared by: Cabinet and Parliamentary Affairs, Global Affairs Canada

Date and time: March 9, 2020, 10:00am-1:00pm

Location: Wellington Building, Room 415

Topic: Canada-China relations

Members present:

LPC: Hon. Geoff Regan, Lenore Zann, Emmanuel Dubourg, Peter Fragiskatos, Robert Oliphant (Parliamentary Secretary – Foreign Affairs), Jean Yip

CPC: Dan Albas, Leona Alleslev, Garnett Genuis, John Williamson

BQ: Stephane Bergeron

NDP: Jack Harris (10am-11:30am), Heather McPherson (11:30am-1:00pm)

Overview of meeting:

The House of Commons Special Committee on Canada-China Relations (CACN) met to hear from two panels. The first panel met from 10:00am-11:30am, and included two former Canadian Ambassadors to China, Guy Saint-Jacques and Howard Balloch. The second panel from 11:30am-1:00pm included three American academics. Full witness list below.

The committee commenced with a motion brought forward by MP John Williamson (CPC). The text of the motion is as follows, “That the committee express its grave concern over the arrest of Jimmy Lai Chee-ying, Lee Cheuk-yan and Yeung Sum in Hong Kong, and that this be reported to the House.” the motion was passed unanimously.

Howard Balloch’s remarks explained the historical context of China, and Xi Jinping’s influence over the trajectory of China in the last five years. He noted that, Xi Ji Ping launched a counter reform agenda in 2014, but that China is in constant evolution. Balloch disputed that the lack of engagement with China has failed because, in fact, Canada has helped China improve its food security, adopt a more rules-based behaviour in international trade by accepting WTO rulings. There is deep engagement between Canada and China on many levels: business, academia, and culture (among many things). Additionally, Balloch referenced Australia as a country who has reacted strongly by implementing laws to prevent domestic interference attempts by the Chinese government. He recommended Canada do the same. 

Guy Saint-Jacques' opening remarks centered on three premises: first, that China is a monolithic, unchanging country; second, that Canada’s policy of broad engagement has failed; and third, that a new, comprehensive “China policy” will act as a course correction for Canada’s involvement with China. He provided historical context, explaining that when Xi Jinping came to power, there had been no indication that he would divert from the path of domestic reform and international cooperation. He emphasized that Canadian engagement with China has not failed. Saint-Jacques recommended searching for ways to better support democracy in Hong Kong and Taiwan, working with allies on common approaches to China on multiple fronts, and continue to bring China into multilateral systems.

Bonnie Glaser provided an overview of China’s evolving global role and highlighted its intentions to modify the international systems in ways detrimental to democracy. She explained that Beijing has expressed dissatisfaction with the democratic governance system but has only started to push for its own alternative vision in recent years. Glaser explained that Canada is not the only country that has been targeted for harming Chinese interests and offending Chinese sensibilities. She concluded her remarks by offering three policy recommendations for Canada: establish priorities in our relations with China – identify what will not be tolerated; pursue a collective response; and identify and use sources of leverage. 

David Shambaugh highlighted that Canada is not alone in re-evaluating its relations with China and that this process is normal for a healthy democratic society. He explained that Australia, New Zealand, Japan, South Korea, and several Southeast Asian countries are also rethinking their relationships with China. He attributed this to a much more domestically repressive and externally confrontational Chinese regime under Xi Jinping. Shambaugh went on to explain that China has changed, and as a result, “the previous premises of our engagement policies need to be rethought and replaced with much more hard-headed responses to China’s more offensive behaviour”.

Yun Sun’s opening remarks focused on the differences between China and the west. She explained that “China today still maintains a high level of victim mentality abnormal for a great power which translates into a heightened sense of vulnerability, hostility, and retaliatory actions when it is triggered”. She ended her remarks by suggesting that in order to deal with China effectively at this difficult time, Canada could develop a more astute and sophisticated understanding of China.

Questions by CACN Members

Dan Albas (CPC) raised an article he read in the Vancouver Sun regarding Chinese government officials meeting with local mayors and school districts in British Columbia, asking if either of the former ambassadors had heard of Chinese officials establishing relationships with local politicians. During the second panel, Albas asked Mr. Shambaugh to expand on his comments regarding US domestic hardening of feelings towards the rise of China. He then asked Ms. Sun to confirm that she had suggested that Canada should become more aware of China’s historical and cultural grievances, and if a small open trading country like Canada should be more proactive than reactive.

Leona Alleslev (CPC) asked Saint-Jacques if he believed Canada needs protocols for Chinese diplomats in Canada. She then asked if Canada should be enhancing processes to protect intelligence and the free market by looking more closely into Chinese companies doing business in China. During the second panel, Alleslev asked Ms. Glaser to provide more information about the increasing integration of military and civilian commercial economies. She asked Ms. Sun where middle powers like Canada are left when the rise of great powers has resulted in a global shift of economic, political, and military balance.

Garnett Genuis (CPC) raised the Garratt case, asking Saint-Jacques what led to success in that situation. He then asked if there had been a quid pro quo when Canada joined the Asian Infrastructure Investment Bank (AIIB) and the past discussions around an extradition treaty. During the second panel, Genuis noted that the original agenda for this committee included former ambassador McCallum and that it would be very important to hear from him. He went on to ask Mr. Shambaugh to explain the difference between good and bad engagement. His last question was about the likelihood of political change in China in the near or medium term.

John Williamson (CPC) asked who determines the policy of engagement with China. Williamson then asked if the Government of Canada should put greater emphasis on the relationship on rights internally in China. During the second panel, Williamson asked all three academics to share their opinions on the resilience and strength of the Chinese Communist Party. He asked if the system is still as strong as it appears, or if there are weaknesses that are not apparent.

Stephane Bergeron (BQ) asked the Saint-Jacques about the Australian legislation referenced in his opening remarks. During the second panel, Bergeron talked about the importance of multilateralism for Canada and asked if China is taking advantage of divisions amongst its allies to advance its own interests. He stated that in the cases of Michael Spavor and Michael Kovrig, Canada had no choice but to ask the US to intervene. He went on to state that the US had essentially chosen to preserve their own interests and not interests of the western world. In the second round of questioning, he asked about Russia’s role in this new international system.

Jack Harris (NDP) asked the former ambassadors what the result of taking a harder line with China. Harris then asked about the issue of fentanyl, which has been exported from China to Canada. He also asked if either former ambassador had concerns about the previously reported lack of political and advocacy diplomats in China.

Heather McPherson (NDP) asked the experts to make their recommendations more specific to a middle-power country like Canada. She then asked about the risks of a multilateral approach. She also asked the experts to comment on where they had seen successes from other middle powers in similar situations. She asked about whether greater retaliation should be expected from China, if Canada were to take a more public approach and involve more countries in trying to free the two Michaels. Her final question was about the potential for Canada to build coalitions with countries in sub-Saharan Africa and if increasing development funding to the region would increase Canada’s capacity to negotiate with China.

The LPC asked both panels a variety of topics. MP Fragistakos asked the former ambassadors what they felt Canadians needed to know about China, later asking how Canada can better support democracy in Taiwan and Hong Kong. MP Oliphant noted that he has been seized by the ongoing consular cases, asking what actions the former ambassadors would recommend be taken. MP Dubourg asked about Huawei, specifically what actions Canada should take regarding this issue. During the second panel, MP Yip asked how a phase-one trade deal between the US and China would affect the competitiveness of Canadian firms that export to or operate in China. She then asked about how relations between China and the US would proceed if a Democratic president were elected. Yip pointed out that Norway and China went through a six-year period of tensions before relations were normalized. She asked if this would be the same for Canada and how the strain could be alleviated. MP Zann asked about women’s rights in China and how China approaches conflict mediation. MP Oliphant thanked the academics for their advice and highlighted the differences between the size and influence of Canada and the US. He asked how a country like Canada could successfully undertake a multilateral approach to resolving the ongoing conflict with China.

Officials who appeared before CACN:

10:00am to 11:30am:

11:30am-1:00pm:

Follow-up:

Next meeting:

Monday, March 23, 2020 – CACN meeting, subject/witnesses TBC

Report on sdir study “human rights of the uyghurs”

Name of Committee: Subcommittee on International Human Rights (SDIR)
Date and time: Monday, July 20, 2020 11 a.m. – 5:45 p.m.
Subject: Human rights of the Uyghurs

1) Overview

SDIR met for seven hours and heard from fourteen witnesses regarding the study undertaken by SDIR entitled, “Human rights of the Uyghurs”.

The first panel covered the history of the situation in Xinjiang, and the policies undertaken by the Chinese government to assimilate the Uyghur people. The second panel discussed the experiences of the Uyghur people in Xinjiang, including the Huseyincan Celil consular case. Witnesses in the third panel drew comparisons between the Uyghurs and the Holocaust and the Canadian residential school system. Witnesses in the fourth panel spoke to their own personal experiences, as well as the experiences of family members.

Broadly, there was a consensus among witnesses that Canada could take more action to support the Uyghurs. Witnesses called on Canada to recognize the situation as a genocide and impose Magnitsky-style sanctions. They also suggested action be taken to ensure that supply chains do not contain goods produced using Uyghur forced labour.

2) Summary

Panel One:

Adrian Zenz: Opened by saying the Uyghur situation has been considered a cultural genocide; however, it could now be considered a genocide under international conventions due to Beijing’s actions to limit births through methods like IUDs and sterilization. Consequently, population growth in Xinjiang has plummeted. Mr. Zenz referred to these actions as “Demographic genocide”. He called on the government to publicly condemn the practices taking place in Xinjiang, perform a full legal determination of the nature of the atrocities taking place, and impose sanctions on Xinjiang’s political leadership.

Olsi Jazexhi: Spoke about his experience as a foreign journalist who was invited to tour the “Vocational Education and Training Centers” in Xinjiang. Chinese officials used this opportunity to share the official narrative of Xinjiang’s history, claiming the region is Buddhist and Han Chinese and expressing interest in connecting the people of Xinjiang to their “original culture”. The training centers were described as schools, not internment camps; however, when journalists asked if people could leave the answer was no.

David Kilgour: Began by talking about forced organ removal, noting that it has been happening to Uyghurs for many years, in fact, predating that of Falun Gong. He then introduced Dr. Mahmut.

Dr. Raziya Mahmut: Focused the testimony on the modern history of the Xinjiang region. She estimated up to three million people are “locked up in concentration camps”, noting that the Turkic people have been tortured and brainwashed, their children are being sent to state run orphanages, the hair of detainees is being used for beauty products, prisoners are used as forced labour (for electronics, automotive parts, textiles etc.), and the women are experiencing forced abortion and sterilization. Dr. Mahmut said “everything that makes us unique has been targeted,” including the re-writing of books and history, and the destruction of religion. This committee could help by issuing a formal statement calling on Xinjiang’s political leadership to immediately abolish the camps and release the detainees. She then called on the Canadian government to use its Magnitsky style legislation to target China’s communist officials for perpetrating human rights violations upon the Uyghurs. Finally, she called on the government to grant asylum to Uyghurs.

Jacob Kovalio: Spoke about the policies of monoculturalism being adopted by the Chinese government and China’s aggressive foreign policy, calling it the, “Chinese version of lebensraum”, a word used by Nazi Germany to describe the policy of settler colonialism. He concluded by stating that in China, there is "no such thing as rule of law”.

Questions:

Panel Two:

Rayhan Asat: Used her statement to discuss her brother Ekpar Asat’s abduction. She called on the government to declare the situation in Xinjiang a genocide, to invoke Magnitsky Act sanctions against Chinese officials, and to work to pass a resolution at the UN Human Rights Commission to call for an investigation into Xinjiang.  

Alex Neve: Began by highlighting the research that Amnesty International has done into the human rights abuses in Xinjiang. He called on the government to prioritize human rights over trade and economic considerations when dealing with China, to consider imposing individual sanctions against Chinese officials, ensure Canadian businesses to not use forced labour in Chinese supply chains, and to build international support in favour of Uyghur human rights.

Irwin Cotler: Stressed the need to invoke Responsibility to Protect in response to the situation. He also called on the government to invoke Magnitsky sanctions and examine the use of the International Criminal Court.  Cotler asked Parliament to define the situation in Xinjiang as a genocide and called on the government to support Uyghur consular cases.

Questions:

Panel Three:

Mehmet Tohti: Spoke about how China has completed a full cultural genocide and is moving into an extermination of an entire cultural group. He gave multiple examples of Uyghur Canadians’ family members disappearing and being taken away in China. He said that compared to Auschwitz, China is making commercial gains by selling organs of Uyghur victims. He stated that continued silence is approval of genocide and that it is too late to raise concerns privately with the Chinese government. Mr. Tohti proposed the following for the Government of Canada: recognize this as a genocide. Ban all products coming from China that are associated with Uyghur forced labour, and urge IRCC to accept 2,380 Uyghur refugee families in dire need.

Dr. Irene Turpie: Expressed her deep concern regarding the human rights situation in China. She said that the fact that children taken away and placed in orphanages should be a red flag to Canadians given the history of residential schools. Her concerns center on two main aspects: the reports of forced birth control and the predatory practice of harvesting organs which is now a billion-dollar business for China. She said that Canadian politicians need to condemn this and strongly urged them to act on Bill S204 – Act to Amend the Criminal Code regarding organ transplant.

Questions:

Panel Four

Chris MacLeod: Opened his statement by explaining that he has been the lawyer of Huseyincan Celil since 2006. He then explained Mr. Celil’s life, his 2006 arrest, and subsequent detention. Mr. MacLeod closed his statement by making two recommendations: first, the Prime Minister needs to appoint a special envoy tasked with seeking the release and return of Mr. Celil to his family in Canada; second, calling for all-party action regarding this issue, implying that this cooperation was possible by making reference several parliamentarians from the CPC and LPC that have been engaged on this file since 2006, and noting that when Mr. Celil was arrested the Prime Minister was CPC.

Kamila Talendibaevai: Ms. Talendibaevai, Mr. Celil’s wife, described how Mr. Celil’s detention has impacted her and her family. She noted that Mr. Celil has never had access to consular service, and while she used to be able to connect with his family, she hasn’t had any communication or information on him for four or five years. She concluded by saying she was unable to explain in a few minutes what she has been through since his arrest fourteen years ago.

Jewher Ilham: Ms. Ilham is the daughter of Ilham Tohti, who has been detained by the Chinese government several times but was most recently arrested in 2014. Ms. Ilham used her speaking time to talk about her father’s work to facilitate constructive conversations between the Han Chinese and the Uyghurs. After his arrest in 2014, he was given a life sentence. Ms. Ilham does not know where her father is or if he is alive and has not known for three years. She concluded by offering a few calls to action: first, stop allowing the Chinese to politicize this situation. This is not a domestic issue. Global Affairs (GAC) needs to raise this issue on a regular basis to its counterparts in Beijing and let them know that the Government will not tolerate these human rights abuses. The government needs to call upon China to close the camps, stop the persecutions, and release her father Ilham Tohti. Second, speak up on behalf of over one million prisoners who are in camps. The government needs to create legislation like that of the Uyghur Human Rights Policy Act in the US. Third, encourage all Canadians not to buy products that rely on goods created by prisoners.

Sayragul Sauytbay: Ms. Sauytbay is an ethnic Kazakh-Chinese national. She was born in East Turkestan, now called Xinjiang after it was taken over by the Chinese government. She was a former doctor and teacher at an internment camp in Xinjiang. After assimilation policies were adopted in 2016, she crossed the border into Kazakhstan as she feared being interned herself; however, was removed from her home in 2017 and sent to a camp to teach prisoners Chinese. Despite signing a document swearing her to secrecy, she has been speaking about what she witnessed in the camps, including torture, rape, and forced sterilization. She said the purpose of the camps is to destroy people and compared the camps in Xinjiang to those created by Nazi Germany. She closed by asking Canadian government to help the people of East Turkestan.

Questions:

3) Follow-ups

N/A

4) Next Steps

SDIR will be meeting on July 21, 2020 from 11 a.m. to 6 p.m. to hear from further witnesses regarding this study.

5) List of Witnesses
Panel 1:

Panel 2:

Panel 3:

Panel 4:

Report prepared by: Eileen Young/DCL, Tazmin Mitha/DCL, and Matthew Ritchie/DCL
Approved: Michael Berg/DCL

Report on sdir study “human rights of the uyghurs”

Name of Committee: Subcommittee on International Human Rights (SDIR)
Date and time: Tuesday, July 21, 2020 11 a.m. – 5:45 p.m.
Subject: Human rights of the Uyghurs

1) Overview

On Tuesday, July 21, SDIR met for a second consecutive day on its study on “Human rights of the Uyghurs”, hearing from nine witnesses.

Witnesses on the first panel drew parallels between the Holocaust, the Rohingya human rights situation, and the Uyghur situation; urging the government to take bold action. The second panel focused on witnesses’ personal experiences. The third panel discussed the connection between forced labour in Xinjiang and global supply chains.

Broadly, there was consensus among witnesses that Canada could take more action to support the Uyghurs. Witnesses called on Canada to recognize the situation as genocide and impose Magnitsky-style sanctions. They also suggested Canada coordinate with like-minded countries and urged Canada to take action to ensure that supply chains do not contain goods produced using Uyghur forced labour.

2) Summary

Panel One:

William Browder: During his opening remarks, Mr. Browder argued that the situation in Xinjiang is one of the most significant human rights issues in the world and recommended that Canada apply Magnitsky sanctions to the perpetrators. He stated that the US imposed sanctions using the Magnitsky-style legislation and wondered why Canada has not done the same. 

Olga V. Alexeeva: Ms. Alexeeva spoke about the history of the crisis and how the frustration between Chinese officials and the Uyghurs has led to many of the current challenges. She argued that, as far as Beijing is concerned, a few small Uyghur groups with connections to Al-Qaeda justifies the widespread mistreatment of the population. Chinese officials view the Uyghurs as a threat to national security and they want to take control of all Uyghurs, not just activists.

Errol P. Mendes: Mr. Mendes argued that Canada should join the US and impose targeted sanctions. He stated that Canada cannot bend its foundational commitments to the rule of law and abandon its often-stated commitments to universal rights. He argued that Canada cannot be a bystander, noting that when Canada does not act, it forfeits its right to be a champion of human rights and dignity. Mr. Mendes argued that the imposition of Magnitsky sanctions sends a strong message, even if Chinese officials do not have assets in Canada or the desire to travel to Canada. He concluded by recommending that Canada must develop a more comprehensive and longer-term strategy towards China.

Azeezah Kanji: Ms. Kanji’s remarks focused on the five different qualifiers of genocide and she explained that there is evidence of all five categories of genocidal acts being committed in Xinjiang. She explained that Chinese officials view Islam as a virus and as a result, they believe that their eradication efforts are justified. She argued that there is an obligation on all states to prevent genocide and that the duty to act occurs as soon as genocide is confirmed. She stated that Canada’s time to react is long overdue. Ms. Kanji also drew parallels between the Rohingya genocide and this crisis. She argued that states delayed recognizing the Rohingya crisis as genocide so that they did not have to act right away, and she argued that they are doing the same thing now.

Questions:

Panel Two:

Omerbek Ali: Mr. Ali described in detail how he was treated in Chinese custody after being arrested by police, including his torture, forced confessions to crimes against national security, and imprisonment. He also described the massive scale of the detention centers.

Gulbahar Jelilova: Ms. Jelilova, a citizen of Kazakhstan, described her arrest in Xinjiang, the Chinese government’s attempt to force her to sign a confession confessing to terrorist acts, and imprisonment. She described the cell she was placed in, the unsanitary conditions, and being forced to take various medications.  She described being interrogated and tortured, as well as her knowledge of executions going on in the prison where she was held. She noted that the Chinese officials created a fake identity card describing her as a Chinese citizen to deny her consular access.

Questions:

Panel Three:

Amy Lehr: Ms. Lehr opened her statement by noting that findings to date have shown that forced labour in China has played an integral part in the oppression of ethnic minorities. She then explained that the re-education policies are linked to poverty reduction programs in China. Ms. Lehr made several suggestions/recommendations: 1. Look into using Magnitsky-style legislation to sanction Chinese officials and companies, also known as “network sanctions”; 2. Update public watch lists, including companies that use forced labour; 3. Seize products created by forced labour at the border; 4. Look into government procurement projects, and avoid companies that use forced labour or rely on a supply chain that uses forced labour; 5. Create a multi-faceted approach to taking action.

Elise Anderson explained that the CCP is turning Xinjiang into a hub for resource extraction and global trade, taking the land and conscripting Uyghurs for cheap labour. Ms. Anderson then noted that the CCP is enacting a genocide because they are colonizers, not unlike the colonial actions taken in Canada and Australia. Ms. Anderson made many recommendations/suggestions: 1. Focus on refugee admissions; 2. Punish and deter harassment of Uyghurs in Canada; 3. Block forced labour imports; 4. Prohibit companies from exporting high-tech tools to China; 5. Impose coordinated, targeted sanctions on perpetrators; and, 6. Make legal determinations as to whether this situation constitutes a genocide.

Guy St. Jacques opened his statement by talking about Canada’s work in Xinjiang during his time as Canada’s Ambassador to China, including the arrest of Huseyincan Celil. Mr. St. Jacques spoke about several Canadian programs in Xinjiang run through the former CIDA, that focused on conservation, use of natural resources, and helping women entrepreneurs. He concluded by providing recommendations: Canada should continue to engage with China regarding common issues such as climate change and the current pandemic; however, Canada needs to take a more realistic approach to relations with China. He recommended an approach based on the defense of Canada’s interests/principles. He emphasized working with like-minded countries and agreeing on common positions when China is aggressive.

Questions:

3) Follow-ups

N/A

4) Next Steps

No further meetings have been scheduled.

5) List of Witnesses
Panel 1:

Panel 2:

Panel 3:

Report prepared by: Eileen Young/DCL, Matthew Ritchie/DCL, and Tazmin Mitha/DCL
Approved: DCL/Barnes

Report on cacn meeting

Name of Committee: House of Commons Special Committee on Canada-China Relations (CACN)
Date and time: Thursday, August 6, 2020 from 3:00pm – 7:00 pm.
Subject: Canada-China Relations

1) Overview

On Thursday, August 6, 2020, CACN met for the first time since March 9, 2020, hearing from Mr. Lobsang Sangay of the Central Tibetan Administration and Mr. David Mulroney, Former Ambassador of Canada to the People's Republic of China.

Before hearing from witnesses, Parliamentary Secretary Oliphant put forward a motion which authorized the meeting to take place. Noting that two other former ambassadors had been invited to attend the meeting but declined to appear, Conservative Party of Canada (CPC) Canada-China relations critic; MP Garnett Genuis,  put forward an amendment stating, “That Canada’s former ambassador, the Hon. John McCallum, be summoned to appear before the committee at a time, date and location to be determined by the Chair and the Clerk of the Committee.” PS Oliphant put forward a sub-amendment to add former ambassador Robert Wright to MP Genuis’ amendment. The sub-amendment, amendment, and motion passed unanimously.

Broadly, there was consensus among witnesses that Canada should take more action regarding the bilateral relationship with China. Witnesses suggested Canada coordinate with like-minded countries on common issues.

2) Summary

Panel One:

During his opening remarks, Mr. Sangay began by referring to the ongoing pandemic, stating that China was “irresponsible,” and “did not inform the world” about the person-to-person transmission of the virus. He argued that the challenge caused by the Chinese Communist Party (CCP)/the Chinese Government is serious, noting that liberal values, democracy, human rights, religious freedoms and environmental issues are all at stake. He drew a parallel between Tibet and the ongoing situation in Hong Kong. He mentioned that China is attempting to restructure the United Nations (UN), and is trying to re-define human rights. Mr. Sangay concluded by recommending the Committee pass a motion supporting the China-Tibet “Middle Way Policy,” which will allow independence for Tibet within the framework of the Chinese constitution. He also recommended Canada coordinate with like-minded countries to pressure China to be a responsible member of the international community.

Questions:

At the end of the first panel, MP Genuis moved a motion in support of Mr. Sangay’s request regarding the China-Tibet “Middle Way Policy”; “That this committee call for dialogue between the Central Tibetan Administration and the government of the PRC with the view to allow the exercise of genuine autonomy for Tibet within the framework of the Chinese constitution and report this motion to the House.”

Debate on the motion was adjourned after some procedural discussions because the committee did not feel ready to debate a vote on the motion at that time. This motion may be considered at a future meeting, or as a part of the recommendations considered when the committee is drafting a future report for presentation to the House.

Panel Two:

Mr. Mulroney began his opening remarks by referencing ongoing issues in the Canada-China bilateral relationship, including the consular cases. He indicated that he was not clear that the “Government has given up the fiction the China is our friend,” saying that the Government of Canada has not summoned the courage to act with integrity. He said it was reassuring that Global Affairs Canada (GAC) has acknowledged China as “a long-term strategic challenge”, but also noted that GAC selected Nuctech, a Chinese company, to supply security technology to missions abroad. Mr. Mulroney made two recommendations: act quickly to halt Chinese interference in Canada and set achievable goals to reduce our vulnerability and dependence on China. Mr. Mulroney put a strong emphasis on the need for Canada to work with like-minded countries on developing common language and positions in response to Chinese retaliatory measures (e.g. trade restrictions, arrest of foreign nationals) when countries take a position to which China objects. He closed by stating that defending our interests with China would likely come with economic consequences, but that this should not deter Canada from acting.

Questions:

3) Follow-ups

N/A

4) Next Steps

No further meetings have been scheduled as of August 7, 2020; however, the Committee met in camera after the public testimony to discuss committee business and we anticipate formal confirmation of the committee’s plans for the coming weeks.

5) List of Witnesses
Panel 1:

Panel 2:

Report prepared by: Eileen Young/DCL
Approved: Colleen Calvert/DCL

Report on cacn meeting

Name of Committee: House of Commons Special Committee on Canada-China Relations (CACN)
Date and time: Tuesday, August 11, 2020 from 11:00am – 2:00 pm.
Subject: Canada-China Relations

1) Overview

On Tuesday, August 11, 2020, CACN met on the topic of Hong Kong, hearing from Alliance Canada Hong Kong, Canada-Hong Kong Link, Hong Kong Watch, Amnesty International Canada, Human Rights Watch China, and the National Endowment for Democracy.

Witnesses spoke out against Hong Kong’s new national security law, noting the negative impact on Hong Kong and the democratic freedoms experienced by citizens. Broadly, there was consensus among witnesses that the Canadian Government should take more action to limit the influence of the Chinese Communist Party (CCP) in Canada. The four core recommendations from all witnesses were: 1) enact Magnitsky-style sanctions against Chinese and Hong Kong officials; 2) enact new legislation to combat foreign interference in Canada by foreign state actors; 3) create new pathways for safe immigration for Hong Kongers to Canada; and, 4) take a leadership position standing up to China’s actions in cooperation with international partners.

2) Summary

Panel One:

On behalf of Alliance Canada, Mr. Wong and Ms. Wong shared their time. Mr. Wong began his opening remarks by stating he was personally at risk under the new national security law. He drew the Committee’s attention to the CCP’s interference, which he noted is responsible for undermining freedoms in Canada, as well as in academia and student activism, where students trained by Beijing are already infiltrating networks in Canadian universities. Ms. Wong made five recommendations: 1) Provide humanitarian assistance to Hong Kongers, Uyghurs, Tibetans, Chinese, and all others fleeing persecution; 2) Invoke sanctions against Chinese and Hong Kong officials for human rights atrocities; 3) protect Canadians' constitutional rights and freedoms from eroding; 4) investigate and combat foreign interference into Canadian institutions; and, 5) End all import export of military and police technology. She called on Canada to enact Magnitsky sanctions in collaboration with other middle powers.

Gloria Fung: Ms. Fung explained the newly implemented national security law in Hong Kong, and its interest to Canada, notably the Chinese regime’s aims to expand its influence and subvert the international rule of law.  Ms. Fung then explained how the CCP intimidates individuals and companies, including herself, by using commercial blacklisting, threatening phone calls or emails, cyber hacking, and physical confrontation. Ms. Fung then talked about the mobilization of pro-Beijing actors within Canada, including Chinese international students and pro-Beijing united front organizations, and the use of advertisements in Chinese language newspapers in Canada arguing in favour of CCP policies in China. Ms. Fung provided several recommendations: 1) Offer a safe harbour program with expedited process to Hong Kongers; 2) Invoke Magnitsky law to sanction Chinese and Hong Kong officials who violate human rights; and, 3) Introduce legislation to combat foreign influence in Canadian politics and suppression of freedom of expression on Canadian soil.

Aileen Caverley: Ms. Caverley expressed her concerns about the national security law in Hong Kong, noting that Beijing could suspend democracy indefinitely. She outlined recent actions taken by the CCP in Hong Kong, including the introduction of national security education, encouraging students and teachers to monitor each other, and firing pro-democracy academic professors. Mr. Caverley then spoke about the Canada-China relationship vis-à-vis trade.  She said that of the Five Eyes countries, Canada is least reliant on China as an export market, and the Canadian government should stop using trade as a reason to avoid standing up to China. Ms. Caverley concluded by saying there are three ways to stand up to China: sanctions, diplomacy, and refugees, and these should be the bedrock of Canada’s response in cooperation with international partners.

Questions:

Panel Two:

Alex Neve: Mr. Neve argued that the national security law “represents the greatest threat to human rights in the city’s recent history.”  Amnesty International’s concerns include: the vagueness of the law and how it has recently been used to target education, journalism, and social media; the ability for the law to override human rights in favour of national security; and the applicability of the law to individuals in other countries. He made five recommendations: 1) Engaging in multilateral institutions with the common goal of standing up to China; 2) Canada should actively pursue action with the United Nations Human Rights Council (UNHCR); 3) Canada should take a leadership role regarding immigration for refugees leaving Hong Kong; 4) Canada should be looking at options under Canadian law and policy to exert greater pressures on China directly; and, 5) Canada should take more action to protect human rights defenders within Canada.

Akram Keram: Mr. Keram also opened by discussing the national security law. He noted that Hong Kongers have turned out in record numbers to vote for pro-democracy candidates in elections despite the national security law. He noted the importance of governments around the world recognizing the CCP’s actions that conflict with existing local and international laws and norms. Mr. Keram recommended Canada take steps to protect Hong Kongers and their families who are seeking to resettle. He closed by urging the Canadian government to stand with other nations to condemn the CCP’s rejection of the rights of Hong Kongers.

Sophie Richardson: Ms. Richardson stated that Human Rights Watch believes this law has nothing to do with security but is instead a “road map for repression.” She thanked Canada for recent actions at the United Nations Human Rights Council (UNHCR) and for public statements made, but urged the Government to take further action by: 1) Publicly and unequivocally stating that Canada will not cooperate with the national security law’s extra-territorial requests or with Hong Kong police requests for information concerning those accused of national security crimes; 2) Adopt a mechanism to enable  Hong Konger, including activists, to find haven in Canada; 3) Augment the capabilities of its consulate in Hong Kong to monitor violations and the impact of the national security law, and increase supports for human rights groups, independent local media and internet freedom; 4) Impose targeted sanctions on Chinese and Hong Kong officials responsible for drafting, adopting, and implementing the national security law; 5)Engage chambers of commerce and other industry associations to reaffirm support for human rights; 6)Support the late-June call to hold a special session on China at the UNHCR; and, 7) Create a cabinet-level position to coordinate, develop, and implement China policy, as this is no longer an issue that fits neatly into foreign affairs or trade.

Questions:

3) Follow-ups

N/A

4) Next Steps

CACN will meet again on August 13, 2020.

5) List of Witnesses
Panel 1:

Panel 2:

Report prepared by: Eileen Young/DCL
Approved: Rebecca Barnes/DCL

Report on cacn meeting

Name of Committee: House of Commons Special Committee on Canada-China Relations (CACN)
Date and time: Thursday, August 13, 2020 from 11:00am – 2:00 pm.
Subject: Canada-China Relations

1) Overview

On Thursday, August 13, 2020, CACN held its second meeting on the topic of Hong Kong, hearing from Columbia University, Hong Kong Watch, Toronto Association for Democracy in China, Freedom House, Hong Kong Democracy Council and the New York University School of Law.

Witnesses were drawn from a range of backgrounds and spoke broadly about the impact of the national security law on Hong Kong and its residents.  Writ large, there was more of a focus on immigration compared to the previous meeting on Hong Kong, and witnesses generally agreed that Canada should take a leadership role among the international community regarding immigration from Hong Kong.

MP Garnett Genuis (Conservative Party of Canada, CPC) gave notice of motion, “That this Committee prepare a report on the situation in Hong Kong to be tabled as soon as possible following the completion of hearings looking specifically at the situation in Hong Kong.” This motion was not/not voted on.

Mentions of Nuctech:

Mr. Cheuk Kwan referred to Nuctech contract during his opening statement: “Not only did two other Canadian companies offer lower bids, but the Chinese company, Nuctech, was slapped with a 5-year tariff by the EU for alleged dumping and engaging in questionable practices. Recently, the company has been caught setting up a honey trap to scheme a Taiwanese official into purchasing these machines.”

MP Garnett Genuis (CPC): “...given what we’re finding out now, it looks like either historic stupidity, explicit corruption, or maybe someone here getting caught in some kind of honey trap. It’s just so bizarre that it’s hard to explain any other way and I think we really need to get to the bottom of that.”

2) Summary

Panel 1:

In addition to their comments below, witnesses in the first panel all made the following recommendations independently: 1) Canada should Coordinate with likeminded countries and join the call a for UN Special Envoy and a UN special rapporteur on human rights in Hong Kong; 2) Canada should enact targeted sanctions on individual officials directly responsible for the crisis in Hong Kong; and, 3) Canada should work with other countries to work on a plan that will offer sanctuary and citizenship for those fleeing Hong Kong.

Michael Davis: a constitutional lawyer, Mr. Davis explained how the national security law circumvents all Hong Kong local laws, especially given it is not subject to constitutional review and the People’s Congress Committee has the ultimate authority to interpret it. He discussed the increased presence of the Chinese Communist Party (CCP) in Hong Kong under the national security law, explaining the increase in media raids, rigged elections, the appointment of pro-CCP judges, arrests of journalists and activists, and secret police in Hong Kong.

Benedict Rogers: opened by noting that aid workers have been subject to intimidation, harassment, threats, physical violence, and arrests since the implementation of the national security law. He referenced a report titled “The Shrinking Safe Space for Humanitarian Workers in Hong Kong”. He concluded by recommending that Canada work with other like-minded countries to establish a compact group to coordinate a global response to the crisis in Hong Kong

Cheuk Kwan: Mr. Kwan opened by noting China does not have respect for the concept of the rule of law, giving the examples of the implementation of the national security law in Hong Kong and the arbitrary detention of Michael Kovrig and Michael Spavor. Mr. Kwan then focused on recommendations Canada could undertake to counter China’s interventions and interference to protect Canadian principles and values:

  1. Canada should be vigilant against cyber-attacks and theft of intellectual property from corporations and research institutions;
  2. Critically assess China's presence in Canadian corporations involved in strategic industries such as mining, energy, and national security;
  3. Support a national hotline as proposed by Amnesty International to encourage the reporting of China's harassment and intimidation of citizens; and,
  4. Establish a more stringent process to ensure transparency among current and former elected officials in their relationships with China in order to mitigate foreign influence in internal affairs

Avvy Yao-Yao Go: focused on immigration as it relates to Canadians in Hong Kong. She made several recommendations:

  1. Canada should expedite family sponsorship applications by Canadians for their families in Hong Kong;
  2. As soon as the travel ban is lifted, Canada should grant temporary resident permits, visas, and student visas to Hong Kongers;
  3. The Canadian consulate in Hong Kong should issue temporary residency and travel documents to facilitate a safe and immediate exit from Hong Kong for targeted activists.

Questions:

MP Garnett Genuis (CPC): asked what efforts the CCP is taking to prevent foreign nationals from leaving Hong Kong, and what Canada should do to plan for this and ensure the security of Canadian citizens.

MP Lenore Zann (Liberal Party of Canada, LPC): asked how the international community should respond to the arrests of media representatives and activists in Hong Kong. She also asked if witnesses could speak to the CCP’s rationale of using the national security law to maintain unity in China.

MP Stephane Bergeron (Bloc Quebecois, BQ): asked about the exodus of pro-democracy activists in Hong Kong, wondering if it would hurt the pro-democracy movement. He asked what the legal weight of the Joint Declaration between the People’s Republic of China (PRC) and the United Kingdom (UK) in the context of the national security law.

MP Jack Harris (New Democratic Party, NDP): asked Mr. Davis if the implementation of the national security law in Hong Kong effectively ended the “Two systems, one country” model, and asked if the national security law breeches the Joint Declaration between the PRC and the UK. MP Harris also asked for more information on actions that could be taken regarding the safe immigration of Hong Kongers to Canada.

MP Mark Williamson (CPC): asked Mr. Davis if the situation in Hong Kong could be compared to the Eastern Bloc during the Cold War, if the Committee should try to hold hearings in Hong Kong, and if parliamentarians could be arrested and put on trial in Hong Kong. He also asked if China might consider enacting a national security law in Taiwan.

MP Jean Yip (LPC): asked Mr. Kwan about confrontations between pro-Beijing actors and pro-Hong Kong democracy activists in Canada. MP Yip also asked how Canada can protect Canadian citizens in Hong Kong.

MP Leona Alleslev (CPC): asked Mr. Kwan about national security concerns surrounding Canadian companies with Chinese stakes (natural resource companies, telecom, etc.), and Chinese companies operating in Canada.

MP Emmanuel Dubourg (LPC): asked about the applicability of the national security law in Canada and if current practices in place by the RCMP and CSIS will protect pro-democracy activists.

Panel 2:

Annie Boyajian: spoke about the changes in Hong Kong since the national security law was enacted. She the mentioned the increasing CCP influence, intimidation, and surveillance in Canada and the United States, particularly on university campuses. Ms. Boyajian spoke about the presence of pro-CCP media in Canada, referencing Canada-Chinese TV (CCTV). During questions, Ms. Boyajian was asked for her recommendations regarding Hong Kong, which are as follows:

  1. Enact targeted Magnitsky sanctions on Chinese and Hong Kong officials responsible for human rights violations;
  2. Carefully review imports and exports to and from China;
  3. Chinese goods made with slave labour should be prohibited from entering Canada;
  4. Begin preparations to quickly evacuate Canadians in Hong Kong, if needed; and
  5. Have the Canadian Radio-television and Telecommunications Commission (CRTC) review Chinese state media companies present in Canada and ensure they are acting in a transparent manner.

Samuel Chu: spoke about the national security law in Hong Kong from personal experience as an activist and person with a warrant out for his arrest under this law, having been charged under the national security law. He noted that anyone he speaks to might be in danger by the CCP, and although he is one of the first foreign nationals to be charged under the national security law, he believes he will not be the last.

Jerome Cohen: spoke about the history of Hong Kong under colonial rule, the changes experienced in the region after the signing of the Joint Declaration between the PRC and the UK, and under the national security law.

Questions:

MP Williamson (CPC): asked Mr. Cohen what he meant by “political justice” and asked Ms. Boyajian to share recommendations as to how Canada can aid the people of Hong Kong and safeguard the freedoms enjoyed in Taiwan.

MP Robert Oliphant (LPC): asked about the sanctions placed on Freedom House by the CCP. He then asked about the American sanctions of Chinese officials and how effective they are. He asked Mr. Chu about extradition treaties.

MP Bergeron (BQ): asked if there would be any negative side effects to sanctioning Chinese and Hong Kong officials. Asked if the national security law was adopted because the Hong Kong government was not able to have the extradition act passed.

MP Harris (NDP): asked Mr. Chu why he believed he was targeted by the CCP, and if Mr. Chu thought the CCP suppression of the pro-democracy movement was to ensure the movement does not spillover into the Mainland. Asked how Canada should act towards China without being caught between China and the United States.

MP Dan Albas (CPC): asked if the witnesses if parliamentarians should be concerned about the personal safety of Canadians in Hong Kong. He then asked if the Government of Canada needs to review their China policy given the disintegration of the “One country, two systems” policy. MP Albas referred to the American government’s decision to require the Confucius Institute to register as a foreign mission, asking if this was a good thing.

MP Yip (LPC): asked Mr. Chu how people in Hong Kong use social media to express their views under the national security law, the impacts of the national security law upon tech companies, and if he believed TikTok is a national security threat and if a ban would be effective in limiting CCP influence in Canada.

MP Genuis (CPC): was critical of the Minister of Foreign Affair’s response to questions raised by the opposition parties regarding foreign interference in Canada, asking witnesses what actions could be taken to limit foreign interference domestically.

MP Peter Fragistakos (LPC): asked about the efficacy of using sanctions against Chinese officials, and the impacts sanctions may have on Canadians living in China as well as why the national security law was implemented in 2020 despite President Xi having been in power since 2014.

3) Follow-ups

N/A

4) Next steps

This meeting is the second of several scheduled on the topic of Hong Kong. The next meeting is scheduled for Monday August 17, 2020 from 10:30am-2:00pm.

5) List of Witnesses:

Panel 1:

Panel 2:

Report Prepared by: Eileen Young/DCL

Approved: Rebecca Barnes/DCL

Report on cacn meeting

Name of Committee: House of Commons Special Committee on Canada-China Relations (CACN)
Date and time: Monday, August 17, 2020 from 10:30am – 2:00 pm.
Subject: Canada-China Relations

Overview

On Thursday, August 17, 2020, CACN held its third meeting on the topic of Hong Kong, hearing from Georgetown University, the New York University School of Law, the University of Toronto, Human Rights in China, and the University of Surrey.

Committee business began with several motions:

  1. The committee began by voting on the motion moved by MP Garnett Genuis (Conservative Party of Canada, CPC)on August 6, 2020, “That this committee call for dialogue between the Central Tibetan Administration and the government of the People's Republic of China with a view to enabling Tibet to exercise genuine autonomy within the framework of the Chinese constitution, and report this motion to the House.”
    1. MP Leona Alleslev introduced an amendment, “after the word between we insert ‘representatives of the Tibetan people (His Holiness the Dalai Lama or his representative and/or the Central Tibetan Administration)’”.
      The amendment to the motion passed unanimously. The motion, as amended, passed unanimously.
  2. Next, the committee turned to debate on the motion put forward by MP Genuis (CPC) on August 13, 2020, “That this Committee prepare a report on the situation in Hong Kong to be tabled as soon as possible following the completion of hearings looking specifically at the situation in Hong Kong.” During debate, members generally supported the motion given the urgency of responding to the situation in Hong Kong but emphasized that this would be an interim report.The motion passed unanimously.
  3. MP Jack Harris (New Democratic Party of Canada, NDP) put forward a motion, “That the committee invite officials from Global Affairs Canada to provide a briefing on the situation in Tibet and Canada’s relationship with Tibet at the earliest opportunity as part of our ongoing study on Canada’s relationship with China”.The motion passed unanimously.

Witnesses spoke broadly about the impact of the national security law on Hong Kong. Writ large, there was more of a focus on business than in the previous meeting on Hong Kong. Witnesses spoke about the narratives coming out of the Chinese Communist Party (CCP), and generally agreed that Canada should take work within an international coalition to take a stand against the CCP encroachment into Hong Kong.

Summary

Panel 1:

Evan Medeiros: opened by raising three points: 1) The international community should expect the situation in Hong Kong to get worse given recent actions taken by Beijing; 2) the fate of Hong Kong will assume greater importance in global politics largely via its impact on US-China relations; and, 3) Canada, the US, and other democracies need to stay active and engaged on the Hong Kong issue. While leverage to change the situation on the ground is limited, we can shape the trajectory of HK and the possible future. Recommendations: 1) Canada should continually and publicly state that it will stand up for the protection of universal values; 2) the US and Canada should take coordinated action to signal to China there are costs for the crackdown in Hong Kong; 3) the US and Canada should work with the international business community to preserve the identity of Hong Kong; and, 4) the US, Canada, and others should take action to protect Taiwan from Beijing.

Alvin Cheung: talked about the impacts of the national security law in Hong Kong. Mr. Cheung stated that the events in Hong Kong, 1) Are bad for Canadian business operating in Hong Kong; 2) Are bad for Canadian citizens inside and outside Hong Kong; and, 3) Directly implicate Canadian foreign policy priorities. He noted, “political apathy will not protect the business community.”

Lynette Ong: talked about political and personal interests of Beijing’s top elites in Hong Kong. She noted that in the past six months Chinese companies have raised capital in the Hong Kong stock market and deepened investment in the territory. Ms. Ong made the following recommendations: 1) Canada should condemn the repression of Hong Kong, being careful of the impacts of potential punitive measures. For example, if Canada imposes measures that remove its economic value, Hong Kong will be reduced to a “rogue province”, which could hurt Hong Kong’s goals of freedom and democracy; 2) Canada should support the immigration of those wanting to leave Hong Kong; and, 3) the Canadian government and Canadian universities should provide scholarships to students from Hong Kong.

Questions:

MP Garnett Genuis (CPC): asked how Canada can deter future actions from the Chinese Communist Party (CCP) and asked if the lesson learned from the Russian annexation of Crimea can be applied to the situation in Hong Kong.

MP Peter Fragistakos (Liberal Party of Canada, LPC): asked what a coalition of like-minded countries should focus on, and which actions would be most effective. MP Fragistakos also asked about immigration from Hong Kong to Canada.

MP Stephane Bergeron (Bloc Quebecois, BQ): asked Mr. Mederios to expand on his recommendations, asking how the Trump Administration’s foreign policy would impact the formation of an international coalition. He also asked about the impacts of sanctions.

MP Jack Harris (New Democratic Party, NDP): asked Ms. Ong to elaborate on the difference between US-China relations and Canada-China relations. Asked what actions could be taken to push China to respect the rule of law.

MP Leona Alleslev (CPC): asked Mr. Cheung what actions the Government of Canada could take to mitigate the threats to Canadian businesses operating in China and the threats to Canadian citizens by the CCP in Canada.

MP Lenore Zann (LPC): asked about Hong Kong’s history and if there were any indications that the national security law, or something like it, would be enacted in Hong Kong. She also asked about communism in China, wanting to know when the system became capitalist.

MP John Williamson (CPC): asked Ms. Ong about her belief that it is possible to reverse the actions taken by the CCP in Hong Kong. Then asked if the attention of the international community should be turned to Taiwan.

MP Jean Yip (LPC): asked how dependent China is on Hong Kong as a financial hub and asked how the government can help Canadian businesses in Hong Kong. MP Yip asked what changes to US foreign policy Canada could expect if Joe Biden wins the election in November.

Panel 2:

Stéphane Chatigny: talked about the history of Hong Kong, and changes to the region since 1997. He concluded by encouraging Canada to act with its allies to develop a coordinated approach with respect to the Chinese regime, including human rights issues, interference in domestic affairs, intimidation on foreign soil, the erosion of civil and political rights in Hong Kong, Taiwan and abroad, intellectual property theft, industrial espionage, and artificial intelligence.

Sharon Hom: opened by talking about her organization, Human Rights in China, noting that it was created in March 1989 to support the democracy movement. Ms. Hom urged the committee to pay attention to the narrative of Hong Kong and the origins of the narrative. Ms. Hom recommended looking at the Confucious Institutes and considering closing them all in Canada, as Sweden did, or deeming them “foreign missions”, like the US did.

Malte Philipp Kaeding: opened by noting that he used a political-psychology approach to explain recent events in Hong Kong. Mr. Kaeding mentioned that with Hong Kong and the US closing the doors to China’s ruling elite, they may consider coming to Canada, which could erode Canada’s democratic system. Mr. Kaeding concluded by noting that Canada has a strong legacy of creative and “very effective diplomacy” and is confident that Canada has the means to protect Hong Kongers and their shared faith in democracy.

Questions:

MP Williamson (CPC): asked Mr. Kaeding what Canada’s policy with the PRC should be given Canada’s trade relationship with China. He then asked Mr. Chatigny to confirm that he did not believe there was much Canada or Canada’s allies could do to change the outlook of Beijing.

MP Robert Oliphant (LPC): asked witnesses to comment on actions that could hurt rather than help Hong Kong. He then asked how homogenous the pro-democracy movement in Hong Kong is.

MP Bergeron (BQ): asked Mr. Chatigny what recommendations he would make regarding the potential immigration of activists to other countries. He asked for recommendations as to what the Canadian government could do to support activists who wish to leave Hong Kong, given the obstacles that the PRC has put in place to impede those attempting to leave. He concluded by asking why many Hong Kongers identify as such and not as Chinese.

MP Harris (NDP): asked Mr. Chatigny about his work with immigrants from China through a business program in Quebec, and if this was a strategy of the PRC to increase its business interests abroad. He then asked if the PRC is dependent on Hong Kong and the financial market there. MP Harris also asked if there are other specific ways Canada can assist Hong Kongers, aside from the existing five demands. MP Harris asked what is next for the pro-democracy movement and how Canada can support it.

MP Dan Albas (CPC): asked how the Canadian government can act to ensure residents of Hong Kong can leave quickly, if needed. He then asked if witnesses thought Taiwan will become an area of interest for the PRC.

MP Emmanuel Dubourg (LPC): asked if Ms. Hom believed that the pro-democracy protests will be successful. He then asked, within the context of the national security law, if lawyers would be able to protect those protesting, and if Canada could provide support.

MP Genuis (CPC): asked witnesses if pro-democracy protesting in Hong Kong will impact people’s response to the abuse of human rights in Mainland China. He also asked about the effectiveness of targeted sanctions.

MP Lenore Zann (LPC): asked witnesses what the citizens of Mainland China know about the situation in Hong Kong. She also asked about targeted versus broad sanctions.

3) Follow-ups

N/A

4) Next steps

This meeting is the third on the topic of Hong Kong. As of August 17, 2020, no future meetings have been scheduled.

5) List of Witnesses:

Panel 1:

Panel 2:

Report Prepared by: Eileen Young/DCL

Approved: Nathalie Labelle/DCL

**Summary report - Special Committee on Canada-China Relations (CACN) – October 9, 2020**

The House Special Committee on Canada-China Relations held its first meeting on Friday, October 9 from 1pm to 3:15pm.  The committee elected Geoff Regan (LPC) as the Chair and three Vice Chairs: Garnett Genuis (CPC), Stéphane Bergeron (BQ) and Jack Harris (NDP). It was agreed to form the Sub-Committee on Agenda and Procedure with five members.

Discussions focused on the workplan adopted by the committee in the previous session of Parliament. No final decisions were made about the Committee’s work plan, rather, they were referred to the subcommittee.

The first meeting during the second session of the 43rd Parliament of the House of Commons Special Committee on Canada-China Relations (CACN) began with the election of MP Geoff Regan as the Chair.  MP Garnett Genuis was acclaimed unanimously as CPC Vice-Chair. As the BQ and NDP only have one member each sitting on the committee, Stéphane Bergeron (BQ) and Jack Harris (NDP) were acclaimed unanimously into their positions. Several routine motions were carried (see Annex 1).

MP Genuis suggested committee members discuss the work they had been doing in the previous session. He believed it would be appropriate to release an interim report on the Situation in Hong Kong, presenting the evidence heard by the committee in the last session and continue working on the study. MP Genuis also suggested re-visiting the larger CACN workplan in subcommittee. There was consensus among members.

MP Genuis then suggested the committee re-adopt previously agreed upon motions including:

    1. “That Canada's former ambassadors to the People's Republic of China, the Honourable John McCallum and Robert Wright, be summoned to appear before the committee at a time, date and location to be determined by the chair and the clerk of the committee.”
      The motion carried.
    2. “That this committee call for dialogue between representatives of the Tibetan people (His Holiness the Dalai Lama or his representatives and/or the Central Tibetan Administration) and the government of the People's Republic of China with a view to enabling Tibet to exercise genuine autonomy within the framework of the Chinese constitution, and report this motion to the House.”
      The motion carried.

MP Harris then put forward the motion previously passed in the previous session:

  1. “That the committee invite officials from Global Affairs Canada to provide a briefing on the situation in Tibet and Canada’s relationship at the earliest opportunity as part of its ongoing study on Canada’s relationship with China.”
    The motion carried.

Members discussed inviting the Chinese ambassador in Canada to appear before the committee.

MP Pierre Paul-Hus (CPC) introduced a motion, “That the committee study national security issues over four or five meetings, including cyber security and the threat of foreign interference and that the committee provide a report to the House.” The Chair indicated that there would be no time for debate. The motion was not voted upon.

3) Follow-ups

N/A

4) Next steps

As of October 13, 2020, no future meetings have been scheduled.

5) List of Witnesses:

N/A

Report Prepared by: Eileen Young/DCL and Tazmin Mitha/DCL

Approved: Rebecca Barnes/DCL

Annex 1: Routine Motions

Committee business began with routine motions.

MP Fragistakos moved the following motions:

  1. Moved that Library of parliament analysts be retained by the committee, as needed.
    The motion carried.
  2. Moved for the subcommittee on agenda and procedures be struck, comprised of 5 members, the Chair and one member from each party and that the subcommittee work in the spirit of collaboration.
    MP Harris proposed adopting the wording passed in January: “That the Subcommittee on Agenda and Procedure be established and be composed of five members; the Chair, the three Vice-Chairs, and one other member from the government, and that the Subcommittee on Agenda and Procedure work in a spirit of collaboration.”
    MP Fragistakos considered this a friendly amendment, adopted MP Harris’s request.
    The motion, as amended, carried.
  3. Moved, “That the Chair be authorized to hold meetings to receive evidence and to have that evidence be printed when a quorum is not present provided that at least four members are present including two members of the opposition and two members of the government, but when travelling outside of the parliamentary precinct, that the meeting begin after fifteen minutes regardless of whoever is present.”
    The motion carried.
  4. Moved that opening statements from witnesses be 5 minutes long, followed by questioning. He outlined the order of the rounds and length of questioning time per round.
    MP Harris proposed amending a change in the order of questioning in the second round.
    The amendment carried.
    MP Genuis proposed an amendment to give discretion to the Chair, in consultation with the Vice-Chairs, to allow longer opening statements for witnesses.
    The motion, as amended, carried.
  5. Moved that all documents will be distributed by the Clerk only once they are available in both official languages.
    The motion carried.
  6. Moved that the Clerk be able to order coordinate meals when the committee or subcommittees are meeting.
    The motion carried.
  7. Moved that witnesses' expenses will be covered up to a certain threshold.
    The motion carried.
  8. Moved that one staff member from each member’s office be allowed to be present during in camera meetings.
    The motion carried.
  9. Moved that in camera transcripts will be kept in the Clerk’s office and be available for viewing by the committee members.
    The motion carried.
  10. Moved a motion outlining requirements regarding notices of substantive motions.
    The motion carried.
  11. Moved that all meetings, except those in camera, be televised, if possible, or webcast.
    The motion carried.
  12. MP Genuis introduced an additional routine motion:Moved a motion regarding Standing Order 106(4), and the ability to call meetings at the request of members of the committee.
    MP Robert Oliphant flagged that this is not a routine motion and asked for the committee to receive clarification from the Clerk regarding Standing Orders that guide special committees. He then moved to adjourn debate until his questions could be clarified.
    After much debate, MP Oliphant withdrew his motion.
    MP Bergeron then put forward an amendment.
    MP Genuis’s motion, as amended by MP Bergeron, carried.

Summary of committee business

House of Commons Special Committee on Canada-China Relations (CACN)

Date and time: October 26, 2020 from 11:00am-1:00pm

Report Prepared By
Eileen Young, Parliamentary Affairs Analyst
T: 343-203-2733

Topic of Meeting
Committee business (in-camera), 11:07am-1:05pm
Canada-China Relations, 12:10pm-1:05pm

Note: Despite CACN’s published notice that the meeting of October 26, 2020 would be entirely in-camera, the committee ultimately switched to a public session partway through the meeting. They immediately heard from witnesses who were previously unannounced.

Members in Attendance

Witnesses

Summary

During the in-camera portion of the meeting the full committee adopted the First Report of the Subcommittee on Agenda and Procedure (SCAC). CACN agreed to resume their study on the situation in Hong Kong and report to the House before Friday, December 11, 2020. They also agreed to invite the Ambassador of the People’s Republic of China to Canada to appear before the committee, as well as officials from Global Affairs Canada (GAC), the Minister of Foreign Affairs, and former Canadian ambassadors to China Mr. John McCallum and Mr. Robert Wright. Upon the completion of the study on Hong Kong, the committee will study issues related to national security as they relate to its mandate.

In summary, CPC questioning broached a wide variety of themes including the safety of Canadian citizens abroad and how the Government of Canada can ensure the safety of citizens abroad. Additionally, MP Chong asked if there will be a mass exodus of Hong Kongers in the future. Mr. Law said he does not see this happening in the foreseeable future, but that Canada should be ready with a plan when it does occur. Of note, MP Genuis noted that the case of Ms. Gui’s father was similar to that of Huseyincan Celil.

LPC questioning focused their questioning in on how the Chinese government is influential beyond its borders and asked which issues likeminded countries can focus on.

During the BQ time, MP Bergeron asked witnesses to expand upon consular cases similar to that of Ms. Gui’s father, including the Chinese government’s treatment of dual citizenships, the complicity of third countries, China’s “modus operandi” abroad, and what are the risks of being abducted.

MP Jack Harris (NDP) focused his questions on sanctions, asking what the UK is planning to do and wondered what mechanisms are available to show strength toward China that have not been used yet. He also asked how Canada should protect its citizens abroad. Ms. Gui recommended the Government of Canada issuing a travel warning and/or advisory for China in addition to Magnitsky-style sanctions.

Follow-up Items

N/A

Committee’s Forward Business Agenda

StudyNext Meeting Dates & StepsDeadline to Complete StudyDate Study Agreed To or Referred
Hong KongCACN will hear from more witnesses, including from Global Affairs Canada (GAC) for their study on Hong Kong.December 11, 2020CACN adopted a motion to continue their study Hong Kong on October 26, 2020, “That the committee resume its study of the situation in Hong Kong and report to the House before Friday, December 11, 2020.”
NB: this study includes testimony heard during the first session of the 43rd Parliament.
Briefing from GAC on TibetCACN will hear from GAC officials, date TBC.Before December 13, 2020.Motion put forward by MP Jack Harris (NDP) on October 9, 2020:
“That the committee invite officials from Global Affairs Canada to provide a briefing on the situation in Tibet and Canada's relationship at the earliest opportunity as part of its ongoing study on Canada's relationship with China.”
National security as it relates to ChinaThe Subcommittee on Agenda and Procedure (SCAC) agreed to study issues of national security upon the conclusion of CACN’s study of Hong Kong.
Pierre Paul-Hus (CPC) put forward a motion on October 9, 2020 recommending CACN study national security but was not/not passed during that meeting.
N/ASCAC’s report, “That, upon the completion of the study of the situation in Hong Kong, the committee study issues related to national security as they relate to its mandate, including, but not limited to: cybersecurity and the threat of foreign influence; and that the committee invite the Minister of Public Safety to appear as part of that study.”
Original motion put forward by MP Pierre Paul-Hus (CPC) on October 9, 2020:
“That the committee study issues related to national security as they relate to its mandate, for four or five meetings, including but not limited to: cybersecurity and the threat of foreign influence; and that the committee report its findings to the House.”

Summary of committee business

House of Commons Special Committee on Canada-China Relations (CACN)

Date and time: November 2, 2020, 11:00am-1:00pm

Report Prepared By
Eileen Young, Parliamentary Affairs Analyst
T: 343-203-2733

Topic of Meeting
Canada-China Relations, 11:00am-12:30pm
Committee business (in-camera), 12:30pm-1:00pm

Note: Due to CACN technical difficulties with translation, Mr. Nankivell delivered his remarks in both English and French at approximately 11:15am. The meeting was then suspended until 11:50am to resolve techincal difficulties. Mr. Nankivell then responded to questions from 11:50am to 12:30pm. The committee was suspended for votes at 12:30pm, following which they met in camera until 2:10pm. The second witness, Mr. Adam Nelson, did not appear.

Members in Attendance

Witnesses

Summary

The committee heard from Jeff Nankivell, the Canadian Consul General in Hong Kong and Macao. During his opening remarks, Mr. Nankivell focused on two areas of interests: 1) raising Canada’s concerns about threats to the integrity of Hong Kong’s institutions, human rights and rule of law under the One Country, Two Systems framework; and 2) attending to the well-being of Hong Kong’s community of Canadian citizens to ensure their safety, freedom, and ability to prosper are maintained.

In summary, CPC questioning focused primarily on how the Government of Canada is ensuring the safety of Canadian citizens in Hong Kong. Specifically, MP Chong asked Mr. Nankivell if the consulate has plans for asylum seekers, should pro-democracy leaders arrive at the consulate, and if the Canadian government has a plan in place to evacuate citizens in Hong Kong, if necessary.

LPC members asked if the consulate has concerns about Canadians being preventing from leaving Hong Kong. MP Yip asked to hear Mr. Nankivell’s point of view on the National Security Law. MP Zann asked about the National Security Law in the context of extraterritoriality.

During the BQ time, MP Bergeron focused his questioning on asylum seekers and refugees from Hong Kong and pressed Mr. Nankivell to share details about the Government of Canada’s policy plans regarding this issue.

Like the BQ and CPC lines of questioning, MP Jack Harris’s (NDP) questions focused on the safety of Canadians in Hong Kong, specifically asking about dual citizens. MP Harris asked about the comments made by Ambassador Cong regarding “Canadian passport holders.” MP Harris raised the Tony Chung, who was arrested outside the American Consulate in Hong Kong, asking what the Canadian consulate would do in a similar situation.

Follow-up Items

N/A

Committee’s Forward Business Agenda

StudyNext Meeting Dates & StepsDeadline to Complete StudyDate Study Agreed To or Referred
Hong KongCACN will continue to hear witnesses for their study on Hong Kong.December 11, 2020CACN adopted a motion to continue their study Hong Kong on October 26, 2020, “That the committee resume its study of the situation in Hong Kong and report to the House before Friday, December 11, 2020.”
NB: this study includes testimony heard during the first session of the 43rd Parliament.
Briefing from GAC on TibetCACN will hear from GAC officials, date TBC.Before December 13, 2020.Motion put forward by MP Jack Harris (NDP) on October 9, 2020:
“That the committee invite officials from Global Affairs Canada to provide a briefing on the situation in Tibet and Canada's relationship at the earliest opportunity as part of its ongoing study on Canada's relationship with China.”
National security as it relates to ChinaThe Subcommittee on Agenda and Procedure (SCAC) agreed to study issues of national security upon the conclusion of CACN’s study of Hong Kong.
Pierre Paul-Hus (CPC) put forward a motion on October 9, 2020 recommending CACN study national security but was not/not passed during that meeting.
N/ASCAC’s report, “That, upon the completion of the study of the situation in Hong Kong, the committee study issues related to national security as they relate to its mandate, including, but not limited to cybersecurity and the threat of foreign influence; and that the committee invite the Minister of Public Safety to appear as part of that study.”
Original motion put forward by MP Pierre Paul-Hus (CPC) on October 9, 2020:
“That the committee study issues related to national security as they relate to its mandate, for four or five meetings, including but not limited to: cybersecurity and the threat of foreign influence; and that the committee report its findings to the House.”

Summary of committee business

House of Commons Special Committee on Canada-China Relations (CACN)

Date and time: November 9, 2020, 11:00am-1:00pm

Report Prepared By
Eileen Young, Parliamentary Affairs Analyst
T: 343-203-2733

Topic of Meeting
Canada-China Relations, 11:00am-1:00pm

Members in Attendance

Witnesses

Summary

The committee heard from five witnesses, all of whom discussed Hong Kong since the implementation of the National Security Law (NSL). Witnesses mentioned the influence of the Chinese Communist Party (CCP) in Canada vis-à-vis the Confucious Institute, the United Front, and social and print media. During questioning, witnesses recommended the Canadian Radio-television and Telecommunications Commission (CRTC) investigate CCP propaganda in Canada and the Government of Canada introduce a foreign interference law, like Australia.

In summary, CPC questioning focused  on how the Government of Canada is ensuring the safety of Canadian citizens in Hong Kong. Specifically, MP Paul-Hus asked witnesses about their personal safety and security whilst travelling to Hong Kong. MP Genuis asked about the CCP’s “infiltration in every part of Canadian society.”

LPC members asked about President-elect Biden’s impact on US foreign policy as it relates to the Canada-China relationship, as well as general questions about how the Government of Canada and like-minded countries can work together regarding the situation in Hong Kong.

During the BQ time, MP Bergeron focused his questioning on changes to the China-Hong Kong relationship after Xi Jingping became president, and the “One Country, Two Systems” policy.  

The BQ, CPC, and NDP all took a similar line of questioning regarding the role and specific  actions Canada could take with like-minded countries regarding Hong Kong. Both MP Bergeron and MP Harris also asked about lifeboat immigration solutions for the 300,000 Canadians  in Hong Kong. MP Yip and MP Bergeron asked what actions the Government of Canada could take to limit foreign interference in Canada.

Follow-up Items

N/A

Committee’s Forward Business Agenda

StudyNext Meeting Dates & StepsDeadline to Complete StudyDate Study Agreed To or Referred
Canada-China relationsThe Minister of Foreign Affairs will appear before CACN on November 23, 2020 from 6:30-8:30pmN/AN/A
Hong KongCACN will continue to hear witnesses for their study on Hong Kong.December 11, 2020CACN adopted a motion to continue their study Hong Kong on October 26, 2020, “That the committee resume its study of the situation in Hong Kong and report to the House before Friday, December 11, 2020.”
NB: this study includes testimony heard during the first session of the 43rd Parliament.
Briefing from GAC on TibetCACN will hear from GAC officials on Tibet on November 17, 2020.Before December 13, 2020.Motion put forward by MP Jack Harris (NDP) on October 9, 2020:
“That the committee invite officials from Global Affairs Canada to provide a briefing on the situation in Tibet and Canada's relationship at the earliest opportunity as part of its ongoing study on Canada's relationship with China.”
National security as it relates to ChinaThe Subcommittee on Agenda and Procedure (SCAC) agreed to study issues of national security upon the conclusion of CACN’s study of Hong Kong.
Pierre Paul-Hus (CPC) put forward a motion on October 9, 2020 recommending CACN study national security but was not/not passed during that meeting.
N/ASCAC’s report, “That, upon the completion of the study of the situation in Hong Kong, the committee study issues related to national security as they relate to its mandate, including, but not limited to cybersecurity and the threat of foreign influence; and that the committee invite the Minister of Public Safety to appear as part of that study.”
Original motion put forward by MP Pierre Paul-Hus (CPC) on October 9, 2020:
“That the committee study issues related to national security as they relate to its mandate, for four or five meetings, including but not limited to: cybersecurity and the threat of foreign influence; and that the committee report its findings to the House.”

Summary Report of Committee Proceedings

Special Committee on Canada-China Relations (CACN)

Date and time: Monday, November 16, 2020, from 6:30 p.m. to 8:30 p.m.

Topic: Situation in Hong Kong

Report By: Natalia Kurtycz, IRCC Parliamentary Affairs, 613-355-6502

Members:

CPC

Garnett Genuis (Sherwood Park-Fort Saskatchewan, AB)

Hon. Michael Chong (Wellington—Halton Hills, ON)

Raquel Dancho (Kildonan—St. Paul, MB) for Pierre Paul-Hus

John Williamson (New Brunswick Southwest, NB)

NDP

Jenny Kwan (Vancouver East, BC) for Jack Harris

BQ

Stéphane Bergeron (Montarville, QC)

LPC

Geoff Regan (Halifax West, NS)

Emmanuel Dubourg (Bourassa, QC)

Peter Fragiskatos (London North Centre, ON)

Robert Oliphant (Don Valley West, ON)

Jean Yip (Scarborough-Agincourt, ON)

Lenore Zann (Cumberland-Colchester, NS)

Witnesses

6:30 p.m. to 7:30 p.m.

Hon. Marco Mendicino, P.C., M.P., Minister of Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship

6:30 p.m. to 8:30 p.m.

Natasha Kim, Associate Assistant Deputy Minister, Strategic and Program Policy, IRCC

Dr. Nicole Giles, Associate Assistant Deputy Minister, Operations, IRCC

Summary

Opening Statement

Minister Mendicino opened by stating Canada’s deep concern about the imposition of the new National Security Law on Hong Kong and spoke of the recently tabled immigration levels plan. He discussed new measures implemented for students and youth from Hong Kong, including fast-track work permits for those with recent graduate experience and the creation of two new permanent resident pathways.

The Minister spoke of various enhancements to Canada’s existing immigration programs, which remain available to those living in Hong Kong and can provide pathways to settling in Canada. This includes prioritizing existing immigration routes for family members, students and workers, and the introduction of several targeted measures to enhance the protections offered by our asylum system.

The Minister concluded by stating that arrests or convictions outside Canada for taking part in peaceful protests are not grounds for inadmissibility to Canada, and that no one will be disqualified from making a legitimate asylum claim in Canada by virtue of having been charged under the new National Security Law.

Questions and interventions focused on the following topics:

Hong Kong Immigration Measures

Members from all parties showed their concern for gaps in current measures that may leave certain groups behind, namely those who may not have the work experience or completed education requirements, as well as human rights defenders and pro-democracy activists, including older adults and seniors. Some members openly indicated that measures are very limiting, and that they focus on economic over humanitarian.

The Minister emphasized that the announcement builds on the levels plans, which is focused on economic needs and are facilitative measures to complement existing policies. Recent announcements are aimed at youth and students. Officials added that a range of measures are both aimed at showing solidarity and highlighting economic objectives of the levels plan.

Although the Minister noted on a number of occasions that no one would be deemed ineligible under the National Security Law, a concern raised by a number of members was that crimes may not be charged based on the same merit as in Canada, and that those individuals may be deemed inadmissible as a result (i.e., arrests for protesting, sedition, rioting). In response, the Minister discussed due process provided by Canada’s asylum system.

Members shared accounts of pro-democracy activists having their travels documents removed by the Chinese Communist Party at exit control. CPC members asked what would be done to help those without documents to come to Canada, and whether temporary travel documents could be provided. The Minister mentioned that the Consul General and staff are working in challenging circumstances and will intervene when they can. He also stated that eTAs can be obtained quickly if eligible and that there is an established process to resettle most urgent cases.

A clarification was made by officials in response to a comment from MP Bergeron about refugee streams for human rights defenders. They highlighted the existing resettlement stream for the most vulnerable populations (including political opinions), and added that the Department hopes to announce additional measures for human rights defenders soon and that design was underway.

A few clarifications were sought by members on the new temporary measures for Pre-Arrival Risk Assessment exemptions. The Minister mentioned that without having to wait twelve months, a failed asylum claimant may have another chance to stay in Canada as a result of the assessment.

Domestic Safety and Security

Due to recent media reports, members asked many questions on domestic political interference, intimidation and coercion of Canadians by the Chinese Communist Party. MP Chong underscored specific cases of international students from China harassing, intimidating or even giving death threats to other students and asked whether any visas have been revoked as a result of such behaviour on Canadian soil.

While the Minister could not comment on specific cases, he indicated that any effort to undermine safety is unacceptable. Officials indicated that there is a general framework and that it is a case-by-case basis. They added that if indeed there is conviction for criminality, an assessment and due process would be involved to ensure that individuals are not in harm’s way if removed. They also clarified that IRCC does not have investigative powers.

CPC members asked about admissibility and mechanisms in place to screen out and prevent individuals involved in intimidating tactics from getting visas and coming to Canada. Members mentioned that agents from the Chinese Communist Party have travelled to Canada on tourist visas and noted that security is not sufficiently coordinated. The Minister emphasized that anyone who is a security risk, or is accused or guilty of human rights abuses would not be allowed to come to Canada. Officials mentioned that robust security screening on aspects such as criminality and abuses in other countries is undergone by Public Safety in consultation with IRCC.

Family Reunification

A number of comments were made about the lottery system for Parents and Grandparents (PGP). MP Dancho questioned both the Minster and officials on the wait times for PGP applications and how the process appear to take over two years. MP Kwan raised the narrow definition of a family and mentioned that there was a previous stream through which siblings and extended family members could be sponsored to come to Canada. The member asked whether this could be brought back.

MP Dancho mentioned that the twelve-month processing time for spousal sponsorship from the IRCC website is not accurate, in response to which officials stated that with applications being digitized and the increase of decision makers, the Department is aiming to finalize 49k applications by the end of the year.

Other

MP Dancho asked officials about projections done by the department in terms of Hong Kongers expected to apply for new economic streams, whether the bulk of applicants would be from those already in Canada and if modelling had been done to determine capacity. In response, officials indicated that it would be difficult to predict with any certainty due to variables at play such as the pandemic and the foreign environment, but that approximately 7k individuals hold valid study or work permits in Canada.

When discussing the importance of multilateral relations, MP Fragiskatos asked officials to what extent the government consulted like-minded allies and what international coordination looked like in the development of recent measures. He also questioned how policy decisions were made from a domestic perspective. Officials spoke of cooperation with Five Eyes on a regular basis to discuss matters of interest to immigration and pointed out that Canada's measures were complementary to those done by other partners.

MP Yip asked whether IRCC has the technological resources to keep up with increased applications and general support needed, and whether the program in the near future would help modernize the paper process. Officials replied that a number of innovations have been put in place to increase the ability to process applications and that significant focus is placed on digital transformation of systems.

MP Oliphant asked whether the Immigration and Refuge Board will have sufficient resources to undertake the work required if Hong Kong citizens are seeking asylum in Canada. The Minister indicated that funds meet the capacity of demand but would not turn down the support for more funding.

After quoting the IRCC webpage that states that Hong Kongers at risk of persecution may also be eligible for GAR or PSR, MP Kwan asked how people will be able to get their refugee status determination and whether this would include the Five Eyes.

On a few occasions, the Minister commended the work done by the Consulate General of Canada in Hong Kong and expressed his gratitude for their exceptional performance. Certain members expressed their worry for asylum seekers presenting at the consul. In response, officials stated that individuals are the responsibility of their own country and that although diplomatic efforts may be deployed, asylum claims are not received abroad at embassies or consulates.

Follow-ups

Summary of committee business

House of Commons Special Committee on Canada-China Relations (CACN)/
Comité spécial sur les relations sino-canadiennes (CACN)

Date and time: November 17, 2020, 6:30pm-7:30pm

Report Prepared By
Eileen Young, Parliamentary Affairs Analyst
T: 343-203-2733

Topic of Meeting
Canada-China Relations

Members in Attendance

Witnesses

Summary

The committee met to hear from Global Affairs Canada (GAC) about Tibet, per the motion passed on October 9, 2020 (see Forward Business Agenda below). In his opening remarks, Mr. Steil noted access to Tibet, also referred to as the Tibet Autonomous Region (TAR), is strictly controlled by the Chinese government. He shared that Canada’s Ambassador to China, Mr. Dominic Barton, recently returned from a trip to the Tibetan capital of Lhasa and the Shannan prefecture along with other diplomats on a trip organized by the Chinese government. Mr. Steil outlined the Government of Canada’s position, noting the government’s deep concern about the human rights situation in Tibet, particularly the lack of freedom of expression, freedom of religion or belief, and the protection of linguistic and cultural rights.   

In summary, CPC questioning focused on the history of Canada’s position on Tibet and asking if parallels can be drawn between Tibet and China’s other autonomous regions (Xinjiang, Hong Kong, etc.). Of note, MP Paul-Hus asked about Chinese state-owned enterprises Nuctech and Vastec, wondering if there was a possibility that PPE purchased by Canada was made in work camps.

The LPC asked Mr. Steil to elaborate further on Ambassador Barton’s recent visit to Tibet, asking if Mr. Barton should be invited to appear before the committee to discuss his trip. Members also asked how Canada’s approach to Tibet differed from other countries.  

During BQ time, MP Bergeron asked Mr. Steil to elaborate on the Seventeen Point Agreement and a recent announcement from Xi Jinping regarding a new railway project.

MP Harris asked if there were any recent dialogues between the Chinese government and Tibet. He then asked Mr. Steil to explain the meaning of “autonomous region” within the Chinese constitution.  

CPC, LPC, and BQ members asked broadly about the Middle Way Approach, wondering what is preventing the Government of China and the Central Tibetan Administration from entering a dialogue.

MP Bergeron (BQ) asked Mr. Steil to share GAC’s response to the committee’s report to the House of Commons. Further to MP Bergeron’s question, MP Genuis (CPC) asked Mr. Steil to clarify if the Government of Canada concurred with all the committee’s recommendations, including advocating for the Middle Way Approach for Tibet to “exercise genuine autonomy within the framework of the Chinese constitution”.

After questioning ended, MP Fragiskatos (LPC) sought consensus from members to invite Ambassador Barton to appear before the committee to brief members on his recent visit to Tibet. Members agreed (see text below).

Following this appearance, the subcommittee met in camera to discuss Committee business.

 Follow-up Items / Suivis

Committee’s Forward Business Agenda

StudyNext Meeting Dates & StepsDeadline to Complete StudyDate Study Agreed To or Referred
Canada-China relationsThe Minister of Foreign Affairs will appear before CACN on November 23, 2020 from 6:30-8:30pmN/AN/A
Briefing from GAC on TibetCACN will hear from GAC officials on November 17, 2020.Before December 13, 2020.Motion put forward by MP Jack Harris (NDP) on October 9, 2020: “That the committee invite officials from Global Affairs Canada to provide a briefing on the situation in Tibet and Canada's relationship at the earliest opportunity as part of its ongoing study on Canada's relationship with China.”
Hong KongCACN will continue to hear witnesses for their study on Hong Kong.December 11, 2020CACN adopted a motion to continue their study Hong Kong on October 26, 2020, “That the committee resume its study of the situation in Hong Kong and report to the House before Friday, December 11, 2020.”
NB: this study includes testimony heard during the first session of the 43rd Parliament.
National security as it relates to ChinaThe Subcommittee on Agenda and Procedure (SCAC) agreed to study issues of national security upon the conclusion of CACN’s study of Hong Kong.
Pierre Paul-Hus (CPC) put forward a motion on October 9, 2020 recommending CACN study national security but was not/not passed during that meeting.
N/ASCAC’s report, “That, upon the completion of the study of the situation in Hong Kong, the committee study issues related to national security as they relate to its mandate, including, but not limited to cybersecurity and the threat of foreign influence; and that the committee invite the Minister of Public Safety to appear as part of that study.”
Original motion put forward by MP Pierre Paul-Hus (CPC) on October 9, 2020:
“That the committee study issues related to national security as they relate to its mandate, for four or five meetings, including but not limited to: cybersecurity and the threat of foreign influence; and that the committee report its findings to the House.”
Canada-China relationsCACN members agreed to hear from Ambassador Dominic Barton about his recent visit to Tibet.N/AOn November 16, 2020, “It was agreed, — That the Ambassador of Canada to the People’s Republic of China be invited to appear, at a mutually agreed time, regarding his recent trip to Tibet.”

Active items in Parliament:

Studies:

  1. House of Commons Special Committee on Canada-China Relations (CACN) – Canada-China Relations; no motion, no completion date.  
  2. House of Commons Special Committee on Canada-China Relations (CACN) – Situation in Hong Kong “That the committee resume its study of the situation in Hong Kong and report to the House before Friday, December 11, 2020.”
  3. House of Commons Special Committee on Canada-China Relations (CACN) – National security (not yet commenced) “That, upon the completion of the study of the situation in Hong Kong, the committee study issues related to national security as they relate to its mandate, including, but not limited to cybersecurity and the threat of foreign influence; and that the committee invite the Minister of Public Safety to appear as part of that study.”
  4. Subcommittee on International Human Rights of the Standing Committee on Foreign Affairs and International Development (SDIR) – Human Rights Situation of the Uyghurs “Pursuant to Standing Order 108(2) and the motion adopted by the subcommittee on Wednesday, July 9, 2020, the subcommittee commenced its study of the Human rights situation of the Uyghurs.”
  5. House of Commons Standing Committee on Government Operations and Estimates (OGGO) –Nuctech “That, pursuant to Standing Order 108(2), the committee undertake a study of the Nuctech security equipment contract; that the study start no later than Monday, November 23, 2020; that the committee send for all documents, memorandums, and briefing materials related to the Nuctech security equipment contract; that the documents be provided to the committee, in both official languages, no later than 5 p.m. (Ottawa time) on December 10.”

Late shows:

Of GAC’s 31 active late shows, 16 are related to China. Topics include human rights, Hong Kong, Nuctech, Uyghurs, consular issues, Taiwan, and foreign interference.

Opposition Day Motions:

There are currently two China-related opposition day motions on the Notice Paper, both put forward by the Conservative Party of Canada (CPC).

  1. October 15, 2020 — Mr. Chong (Wellington—Halton Hills) — That the House: (a) recognize that the People’s Republic of China’s decision to impose a national security law on Hong Kong is a violation of the 1984 Sino-British Joint Declaration, which guarantees Hong Kong a high degree of autonomy in the “one country, two systems” framework, and which guarantees the people of Hong Kong rights and freedoms, including those of the person, of speech, of the press, of assembly, of association, of travel, of movement, of correspondence, of strike, of choice of occupation, of academic research and of religious belief; and (b) call on the government to work with Canada’s allies to immediately impose sanctions, such as Magnitsky sanctions as per the Justice for Victims of Corrupt Foreign Officials Act, on officials responsible for the violations of this international treaty.
  2. November 12, 2020 — Mr. Chong (Wellington—Halton Hills) — That, given that (i) the People’s Republic of China, under the leadership of the Chinese Communist Party, is threatening Canada’s national interest and our values, including Canadians of Chinese origin within Canada’s borders, (ii) it is essential that Canada have a strong and principled foreign policy backed by action in concert with its allies, the House call upon the government to: (a) make a decision on Huawei’s involvement in Canada’s 5G network within 30 days of the adoption of this motion; and (b) develop a robust plan, as Australia has done, to combat China’s growing foreign operations here in Canada and its increasing intimidation of Canadians living in Canada, and table it within 30 days of the adoption of this motion.

Order Paper Questions (OPQs):

There are two active OPQs tasked to GAC, as of November 13, 2020,

  1. Q-0128: October 6, 2020 — Mr. Genuis (CPC - Sherwood Park-Fort Saskatchewan) — With regard to the government’s reaction to the genocide and human rights abuses of Uighurs in Xinjiang Province, China, and the decision as to whether to place Magnitsky sanctions on those responsible: (a) will the government be placing sanctions under the Magnitsky Act on the Chinese government officials responsible for the genocide; (b) if the answer to (a) is affirmative, which Chinese government officials will be subject to the sanctions, and what criteria will the government use to determine which officials will be subject to the sanctions; and (c) if the answer to (a) is negative, then what is the rationale for not placing sanctions on those responsible for this genocide?
  2. Q-0207: — October 26, 2020 — Mr. Chong (CPC - Wellington-Halton Hills) — With regard to the government’s reaction to measures taken by the Chinese government against those living in Hong Kong: (a) how many asylum and refugee claims have been granted, since January 1, 2019, to those who were previously living in Hong Kong; (b) how many asylum and refugee claims from individuals in Hong Kong does the government project will be received in the next 12 months; (c) has the government made contingency plans to ensure that safe return of all Canadians who wish to return, including those with dual citizenship and, if so, what are the details of such plans; and (d) what specific steps, if any, has the government taken to ensure that Canadians in Hong Kong are not arbitrarily arrested or detained under the guise of the so-called national security law?

Petitions:

N/A

Question Period:

China has been a topic of active discussion in Question Period across all parties. The CPC are the most vocal and have repeatedly raised question on Hong Kong, the Uyghurs, Coronavirus (COVID-19), Huawei, and the appointment of Ambassador Dominic Barton. BQ and Greens are less active but have asked about the Uyghurs, Hong Kong, and the Foreign Investment Promotion and Protection Agreement (FIPA). The NDP have not raised China in QP during the second session of the 43rd Parliament.

See Tab 6 for a full list of questions asked.

Senate motions:

  1. Senator Leo Housakos (CPC): “That the Senate of Canada call upon the Government of Canada to impose sanctions, pursuant to the Justice for Victims of Corrupt Foreign Officials Act (Sergei Magnitsky Law), against Chinese officials in relation to the human rights abuses and systematic persecution of Uighur Muslims in China.”
  2. Senator Leo Housakos (CPC): “That the Senate of Canada call upon the Government of Canada to impose sanctions, pursuant to the Justice for Victims of Corrupt Foreign Officials Act (Sergei Magnitsky Law), against Chinese and Hong Kong officials for the violation of human rights, civil liberties and the principles of fundamental justice and rule of law in relation to the ongoing pro-democracy movement in Hong Kong.”
  3. Senator Leo Housakos (CPC): “That the Standing Senate Committee on Foreign Affairs and International Trade (AEFA) be authorized to examine and report on the situation in Hong Kong, when and if the committee is formed; and That the committee submit its final report no later than February 28, 2021.”
  4. Senator Leo Housakos (CPC): “That the Standing Senate Committee on Human Rights be authorized to examine and report on the ongoing persecution and unlawful detention of Uighur Muslims in mainland China, when and if the committee is formed; and That the committee submit its final report no later than February 28, 2021.”
  5. Senator Leo Housakos (CPC): “That the Standing Senate Committee on Foreign Affairs and International Trade be authorized to examine and report on the situation in Hong Kong, when and if the committee is formed; and That the committee submit its final report no later than February 28, 2021.”
  6. Senator Leo Housakos (CPC): “That the Standing Senate Committee on National Security and Defence be authorized to examine and report on the prospect of allowing Huawei Technologies Co., Ltd. to be part of Canada’s 5G network, when and if the committee is formed; and That the committee submit its final report no later than February 28, 2021.”
  7. Senator Thanh Hai Ngo (CPC): “That the Senate urge the Government of Canada to actively support the genuine autonomy of Tibetand, consequently, to also call for the People’s Republic of China to:
    1. renew the Sino-Tibetan dialogue in good faith and based on the Middle Way Approach;
    2. respect the religious rights of the Tibetan people and stop interference in the process of recognizing a successor or reincarnation of the 14th Dalai Lama;
    3. respect the linguistic rights, freedom of movement, thought and conscience of the people in Tibet;
    4. free all Tibetan political prisoners, including the youngest political prisoner Gendhun Choekyi Nyima (Panchen Lama), and cease all arbitrary detention of dissidents;
    5. grant Canada reciprocal diplomatic access to Tibet without limitations; and
    6. protect the Tibetan Plateau that serves as Asia’s water tower, feeding over a billion lives in Asia; and
    7. That the Senate urge the Government of Canada to raise Tibetan issues at every opportunity with China with a view to taking the additional steps necessary to deescalate tensions and restore peace and stability in Tibet.

Question Period (QP) roll-up

Question TopicDate of QuestionQuestionerPolitical PartyQuestionResponderResponse
China - Magnitsky Sanctions2020-11-03Member of Parliament - Cooper, Michael (St. Albert—Edmonton)Conservative Party of CanadaMr. Speaker, yesterday, Communist China, as part of its systematic campaign to dismantle democracy in Hong Kong, arrested eight pro-democracy politicians. Meanwhile, Communist China continues to escalate threats against democratic Taiwan by sending sorties into Taiwanese aerospace on 25 of the past 31 days of October. Enough is enough.
When will the government impose sanctions on Chinese Communist officials?
Member of Parliament - Champagne, François-Philippe (Saint-Maurice—Champlain)Mr. Speaker, we have been standing up at every step of the way. If we look at the case of Hong Kong, Canada was the very first country in the world to suspend the extradition treaty between Canada and Hong Kong. We then suspended the export of equipment and we adopted our travel advisory. At every step of the way, we have been standing up for values and principles with our allies around the world. We will continue to stand up for the values and principles and we will always continue to fight for democracy around the world.
China - COVID-19 Vaccines2020-10-29Member of Parliament - Paul-Hus, Pierre (Charlesbourg—Haute-Saint-Charles)Conservative Party of CanadaMr. Speaker, yesterday I asked the Prime Minister two questions, and he could not answer me. Today, I will direct my question to the minister responsible for the file.
The first vaccine development contract that was signed was awarded to a Chinese company called CanSino Biologics. The contract failed, in reality, because the Chinese communist regime cannot be trusted.
Now that the government has made this mistake, we want to know how many millions of dollars have been lost because of this failed deal.
Member of Parliament - Bains, Navdeep (Mississauga—Malton)Mr. Speaker, I thank my colleague for his question.
Let me clarify that the company and government in question did not receive any funding from the Government of Canada. We will continue to actively pursue all promising options for a vaccine against COVID-19.
China - COVID-19 Vaccines2020-10-29Member of Parliament - Paul-Hus, Pierre (Charlesbourg—Haute-Saint-Charles)Conservative Party of CanadaMr. Speaker, that is what I call an answer. He might want to share that with the Prime Minister, who did not seem to be aware of it yesterday. We would like to get the same kinds of answers to questions about WE Charity and Frank Baylis and the $237 million.
Things did not work out with CanSino Biologics, so we are falling behind. We know that seven companies were contracted, but we want to know how far behind Canada will be in getting COVID-19 vaccines.
Member of Parliament - Bains, Navdeep (Mississauga—Malton)Mr. Speaker, I thank the member for giving me this opportunity to speak.
It is important to have a vaccine strategy. That is why we will keep working with all the companies to find solutions for all Canadians across Canada. That is an absolute priority for our government.
China - COVID-19 Vaccines2020-10-28Member of Parliament - Paul-Hus, Pierre (Charlesbourg—Haute-Saint-Charles)Conservative Party of CanadaMr. Speaker, on the contrary, all we want is to address the situation.
The government has bet everything on China since the beginning. We have been had by the Chinese communist regime. We got taken for a ride. Radio-Canada is reporting that the contracts signed with other companies are putting us three months behind. As a result, we will get vaccines three months later than other countries.
The other ministers have been insulting us all along.
Instead of insulting us, can the Prime Minister tell us whether it is true that we will get vaccines three months later than other countries?
Member of Parliament - Trudeau, Justin (Papineau)Mr. Speaker, as a government we have negotiated with vaccine manufacturers around the world.
They are not currently manufacturing vaccines, but they are researching potential ones. We do not know which company will find a vaccine first or which vaccine will be the best.
We have negotiated with a lot of companies. We know that Canadians want Canada to have access to vaccines in a timely fashion. That is precisely what we were able to negotiate.
China - COVID-19 Vaccines2020-10-28Member of Parliament - Paul-Hus, Pierre (Charlesbourg—Haute-Saint-Charles)Conservative Party of CanadaMr. Speaker, the first contract for the development of a COVID-19 vaccine was signed with CanSino Biologics, a Chinese pharmaceutical giant. The agreement ended in August when China's communist regime prohibited CanSino Biologics from exporting its products to Canada. Canadians currently do not know how much the Government of Canada paid CanSino Biologics.
Could the Prime Minister tell us how much was paid?
Member of Parliament - Trudeau, Justin (Papineau)Mr. Speaker, our approach for vaccines and personal protective equipment is to try to find all kinds of solutions to ensure we have enough.
We have signed seven different contracts for vaccines from around the world, which we hope to provide to Canadians. No one knows which vaccine will be developed first and which one will be the most effective. That is why we signed multiple contracts. We are working with the global COVAX initiative to ensure that we will have other sources of vaccines for Canada.
We are doing everything we can to keep Canadians safe. If the Conservatives do not want to negotiate to protect Canadians, let them say so.
China - Consular Cases2020-10-28Member of Parliament - Barrett, Michael (Leeds—Grenville—Thousand Islands and Rideau Lakes)Conservative Party of CanadaMr. Speaker, we would think that with the ties that this Prime Minister has to the CCP he would be able to get more action, but that dinner was also paid for with a grant from Canadian taxpayers, thanks to the heritage minister and Destination Canada. We do not know yet how much Canadians paid so that the Canadian business elites could applaud Communist China and wag their finger at their own government, but we know a dollar is too much.
Can the Prime Minister tell this House how much Canadians paid for the latest love-in with Canada's corporate China lobby?

Member of Parliament - Trudeau, Justin (Papineau)Mr. Speaker, even as we have consistently stood up strongly in defence of the two Michaels, stood up in defence of the Uighurs, and have been concerned for Canadian citizens and indeed all citizens in Hong Kong, we have continued to look at China as a market for our grain farmers, for our seafood producers, and for so many Canadians who recognize that the second-largest economy in the world represents opportunities for Canadian families and businesses. Walking that careful line of being unequivocal on the defence of human rights and recognizing economic ties with the second-largest economy in the world is what we have been doing.
China - Consular Cases2020-10-28Member of Parliament - Barrett, Michael (Leeds—Grenville—Thousand Islands and Rideau Lakes)Conservative Party of CanadaMr. Speaker, for months, the Prime Minister has been promising a new tone on China, but nothing has actually changed. For almost two years, Canadians Michael Kovrig and Michael Spavor have been in prison in China. In that time, the government has given almost $350,000 to the Canada-China Business Council, the same group that protested even raising the issue of the two Michaels at its recent dinner. Why does the government's new tone sound like the same old song and dance?Member of Parliament - Trudeau, Justin (Papineau)Mr. Speaker, we have been clear from the very beginning about our principles, our commitment to the rule of law and our deep concern for our detained citizens. We have worked over the past many months to try to bring them home. We will continue to work extremely hard, not just on our own but with allies around the world who have consistently spoken up against China's arbitrary detention of citizens and its coercive diplomacy. We will continue to be loud and clear on the principles of defending human rights and the rule of law. We will continue to work with countries around the world, even as we highlight the excesses and the wrongs on human rights.
China - Huawei2020-10-27Member of Parliament - Bergen, Candice (Portage-Lisgar)Conservative Party of CanadaMr. Speaker, we know that some of these bad actors are also big donors to the Liberal Party and the Trudeau Foundation. We are known by the company we keep, and the Prime Minister seems quite comfortable hanging out with Chinese Community Party officials.
It begs the question: Does the Prime Minister's fear of Communist China and his refusal to, for example, ban Huawei from Canada's 5G or stand up for Canadians who are being held hostage in China have anything to do with his being compromised by his cozy relationship with CCP officials?
Member of Parliament - Champagne, François-Philippe (Saint-Maurice—Champlain)Mr. Speaker, we will take no lessons from the Conservatives when it comes to standing up to China. We were the very first country in the world to suspend our extradition treaty after the imposition of a national security law. We suspended the export of sensitive equipment. We have updated our travel advisory.
We have been a leading voice in the world when it comes to defending human rights. We will continue to defend the rights and interests of Canadians around the world and stand up against anyone who would go against our interests.
China - Communist Party2020-10-27Member of Parliament - Bergen, Candice (Portage-Lisgar)Conservative Party of CanadaMr. Speaker, I am sure that the Prime Minister gets hundreds of requests to meet with Canadians from right across the country. I am sure that, because the Prime Minister's time is precious, he must make deliberate decisions on who he meets with and why.
With that mind, why did the Prime Minister choose to meet with multiple Chinese Communist Party elites who have apparent links to gangs, illegal casinos and organized crime here in Canada?
Member of Parliament - Oliphant, Robert (Don Valley West)Mr. Speaker, I am pleased to answer that question. As we all know in the House, the relationship between China and Canada is an intricate, difficult and complex relationship, which we are managing carefully, particularly in light of the fact that we have Canadians who have been arbitrarily held in detention.
We will continue to do everything we can to ensure that human rights are protected and Canadian lives are protected. We will continue to speak up, strongly and forcefully, on all issues that affect us in that relationship with China
China - COVID-19 Reporting2020-10-26Member of Parliament - O'Toole, Erin (Durham)Conservative Party of CanadaMr. Speaker, the Minister of Health always took the Chinese communist regime at its word regarding its handling of the pandemic. All of our allies say that the figures from China are false. Because of this inaccurate information, our country was not prepared for the pandemic. Now, the minister says that China must be held accountable if the figures are incorrect.
How much longer will the minister keep defending China, and when will she admit she was wrong?
Member of Parliament - Freeland, Chrystia (University—Rosedale)Mr. Speaker, I think it is very important for all members of the House to be aware of the difference between a democracy and an authoritarian country. Democracies are more transparent.
I want to stress the importance of the 300,000 Canadians in Hong Kong right now. We are with them, and our government will always be with them.
China - COVID-19 Reporting2020-10-26Member of Parliament - O'Toole, Erin (Durham)Conservative Party of CanadaMr. Speaker, the government's new tone on China always comes with conditions. In the House the foreign minister is all bluster, but he then issues a statement claiming his change in tone is the result of political cycles. On Sunday the health minister said that if China misled the world about COVID-19, it should be held accountable. The rest of the world knows Beijing held back critical information. Only the minister seems to have some doubt.
Why does the government find it so hard to face the facts when it comes to communist China?
Member of Parliament - Freeland, Chrystia (University—Rosedale)Mr. Speaker, I do not find it hard to face the facts about authoritarian communist regimes. I have lived in one, and I have reported on them extensively. When it comes to China, let me say a few things.
First and foremost, our government is standing up for the 300,000 Canadians in Hong Kong. Let me say to them that we are with them. They are Canadian and our government will always support them. Let me also say how appalled our government is by the treatment of Uighurs. We are going to speak up for human rights everywhere in the world.
China - Uighurs2020-10-23Member of Parliament - Brunelle-Duceppe, Alexis (Lac-St-Jean)Bloc QuebecoisMr. Speaker, the atrocious human rights abuses against the Uighur people in China have been going on for many years. Simply put, they amount to genocide. The House of Commons Subcommittee on International Human Rights has officially recognized them as such. The situation is untenable.
The Chinese Communist Party must be held responsible for these acts of genocide. Do the Government of Canada and the Minister of Foreign Affairs agree with the findings of the subcommittee, of which Liberal MPs are members, and do they recognize that the Chinese government is committing genocide against the Uighur people?

Member of Parliament - Champagne, François-Philippe (Saint-Maurice—Champlain)Mr. Speaker, I thank my hon. colleague for the question.
We are all deeply troubled by the human rights violations in Xinjiang. We have publicly and systematically called on the Chinese government to end the repression of the Uighurs. I recently raised this issued directly with the United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights, Ms. Bachelet, to see what the international community could do. More recently, Canada and 37 countries have strongly denounced the violations in this region of China.
China-Huawei2020-10-21Member of Parliament - O'Toole, Erin (Durham)Conservative Party of CanadaMr. Speaker, first the Prime Minister said he was going to make a decision on Huawei before the last election, and he did not. Then he said he was going to listen to our allies before he made a decision, then he did not. Our Five Eyes allies have all decided that Huawei cannot be in our 5G infrastructure.
Will the Prime Minister come clean with Canadians and admit he wants Huawei to be part of Canada's 5G network?
Member of Parliament - Trudeau, Justin (Papineau)Mr. Speaker, emerging 5G technologies have the potential to meet an explosion in consumer and industrial demand for faster and higher-capacity networks. We want to ensure that Canadians benefit from the latest 5G innovations. At the same time, the safety and security of Canadians will always be our number one priority. We will never compromise on issues of national security. That is why we are working with our allies, and with our experts in intelligence and security services, to take the right decision for Canadians. Mr. Speaker, the safety and security of Canadians and our communities will always be our number one priority.
At the same time, we will continue to work with our allies, our partners and security and intelligence agencies to make the best decision for Canada. We will continue to do what is in the best interests of Canadians.
China - Hong Kong2020-10-19Member of Parliament - O'Toole, Erin (Durham)Conservative Party of CanadaMr. Speaker, another week, another provocation from China. As always, this Liberal government maintains the status quo. The Chinese ambassador threatened the 300,000 Canadians living in Hong Kong. Worse still, today the Chinese government called on Canada to apologize.
Will the Prime Minister finally protect Canadians and stand up to China?
Member of Parliament - Freeland, Chrystia (University—Rosedale)Mr. Speaker, our stance on human rights and freedom of expression is very clear. That is why we have been clear on issues like the situation in Hong Kong and the treatment of the Uighurs. Obviously the Minister of Foreign Affairs has taken steps to clarify and officially convey Canada's point of view on the ambassador's comments. I want to emphasize that the government's decisions when it comes to immigration or any other domestic matter are made by Canada and Canada alone.
China - Hong Kong2020-10-19Member of Parliament - O'Toole, Erin (Durham)Conservative Party of CanadaMr. Speaker, what is clear is that the government is too timid to act. Last week, the Chinese ambassador threatened 300,000 Canadians currently living in Hong Kong. He has offered no public apology and the government has not demanded one. This morning, we learned that the Chinese government has doubled down and is complaining about our reaction to its threat.
Will the government finally demand that the Chinese ambassador apologize to Canadians publicly in the same way that he publicly threatened them?
Member of Parliament - Freeland, Chrystia (University—Rosedale)Mr. Speaker, let me be very clear. Our government is clear and outspoken in our defence of human rights and free speech in Canada and around the world. That is why we have been steadfast in defending the protests in Hong Kong and the 300,000 Canadians who live there, and in protesting the treatment of the Uighurs.
Let me just say that the recent comments by the Chinese ambassador are not in any way in keeping with the spirit of appropriate diplomatic relations between two countries. Let me also add that Canada's decisions will be made by Canadians.
China - Uighurs2020-10-19Member of Parliament - O'Toole, Erin (Durham)Conservative Party of CanadaMr. Speaker, the only thing that remains clear is the Prime Minister's continued admiration for the basic dictatorship in China.
This morning the Chinese ambassador took his comments a step further. He has issued another vague threat against Canada if Parliament dares to condemn the ethnic cleansing against Muslim Uighurs in western China.
Canadians in Hong Kong have been threatened. This House has now been threatened. Who else has to be threatened by the ambassador before the Prime Minister is willing to pull his credentials?
Member of Parliament - Freeland, Chrystia (University—Rosedale)Mr. Speaker, let me be very clear. I am well aware of the character of authoritarian communist regimes. I have lived in one and reported on it. Let me also be clear that when it comes to the treatment of the Uighurs, an ethnic Muslim minority that is being persecuted, Canada will always speak out clearly and without any reservation. Let me assure the 300,000 Canadians in Hong Kong that a Canadian is a Canadian is a Canadian, and we will stand with them.
China - Hong Kong2020-10-19Member of Parliament - Genuis, Garnett (Sherwood Park—Fort Saskatchewan)Conservative Party of CanadaMr. Speaker, the reality is that the government has discovered that its appeasement to the People's Republic of China is deeply unpopular with Canadians, so now it is trying to sound tougher while changing absolutely nothing.
This minister has real power. It is not about how he feels; it is about what he will do. The government could implement a real lifeboat scheme. It could hold diplomats accountable for foreign interference. It could impose Magnitsky sanctions on those who were involved in gross violations of human rights in Hong Kong, Xinjiang and elsewhere.
Verbal machismo will not fool Canadians, and it will not help people in Hong Kong. Words are not enough. When will the minister act?
Member of Parliament - Mendicino, Marco (Eglinton—Lawrence)Mr. Speaker, this government has already taken action by suspending our extradition treaty with Hong Kong, by imposing other sanctions and by continuing to stand shoulder to shoulder with the people of Hong Kong, which includes standing up for Canadians who are there.
We will continue to defend human rights around the world. We have an asylum system that ensures that those who are seeking safe refuge in Canada are able to exercise that right in Canada. We stand shoulder to shoulder with the people of Hong Kong.
China-Huawei2020-10-08Member of Parliament - O'Toole, Erin (Durham)Conservative Party of CanadaMr. Speaker, yesterday the Prime Minister said that he would follow what our allies were doing when it comes to Huawei. As part of the Five Eyes, we share intelligence with the United Kingdom. This morning, their House of Commons found that Huawei is strongly linked to the Chinese state and the Chinese Communist Party, despite claims to the contrary.
Why is the Prime Minister ignoring all the warnings about Huawei in Canada's 5G network?

Member of Parliament - Trudeau, Justin (Papineau)Mr. Speaker, again, that is simply not true. We have worked very closely with our allies and Five Eyes partners around the world to ensure the safety and security of Canadians, and of our infrastructure.
We will continue to make decisions based on expert advice from our intelligence and security professionals as we move forward to do what we need to do to keep Canadians safe in an increasingly interconnected world.
China-Huawei2020-10-08Member of Parliament - O'Toole, Erin (Durham)Conservative Party of CanadaMr. Speaker, the Prime Minister's security experts are reading the reports out of the U.K. that found Huawei had been financed by the Chinese state to the tune of $75 billion in the last three years. It also found that Huawei had engaged in a variety of intelligence, security and intellectual property violations around the world. In Canada, the National Post has reported that Huawei theft may have led to the downfall of Nortel.
Four of the Five Eyes have spoken when it comes to Huawei. Why is the Prime Minister the only one with his eyes closed?
Member of Parliament - Trudeau, Justin (Papineau)Mr. Speaker, we continue to be very focused on keeping Canadians safe. We are certainly aware of all these reports and are looking very carefully at them, but we trust our experts in our security realm and in our intelligence realm to make fact-based recommendations to us. They are gathering information from our partners. They are looking at this situation. We will move forward in a responsible way that keeps Canadians safe, as we have every step of the way.
China - Hong Kong2020-10-07Member of Parliament - Barrett, Michael (Leeds—Grenville—Thousand Islands and Rideau Lakes)Conservative Party of CanadaMr. Speaker, the Prime Minister should hope that Canadians do not judge him by the company that he keeps. He is just the latest Liberal with worrisome ties to the Chinese Communist Party: Chan, Peschisolido, Barton, McCallum.
These latest bad actors operating their illegal casino in Markham, just like the ones arrested this weekend in B.C., are helping arrest protesters in Hong Kong, but do not worry, they have donated millions of dollars to the Trudeau Foundation.
Why should Canadians trust this defective Liberal government complete with its made-in-China sticker?
Member of Parliament - Trudeau, Justin (Papineau)Mr. Speaker, I have addressed that question, but, again, it points out that the Conservatives are focused on trying to score political points at a time when Canadians expect people to come together and work for them in this COVID crisis.
We will continue to focus on supporting Canadians in this second wave. We will be there for families, workers and small businesses. We will be there to support industries across this country as they are dealing with this unprecedented pandemic.
We made a commitment to Canadians that we would have their backs, and that is exactly what we are doing. Regardless of what the Conservatives want to focus on, we will stay focused on Canadians in this pandemic.
China-Huawei2020-10-07Member of Parliament - O'Toole, Erin (Durham)Conservative Party of CanadaMr. Speaker, Australia, the United Kingdom, the United States and Japan have already said that Huawei cannot be part of their 5G system. The United Kingdom announced that it had found a security flaw in Huawei's 5G system. Our Prime Minister is afraid to stand up to China. He prefers the status quo, which puts our security at risk.
When will the Prime Minister make a final decision about Huawei?
Member of Parliament - Trudeau, Justin (Papineau)Mr. Speaker, informed security decisions are made by our intelligence services and security experts, and not for political reasons. With respect to our policies, we have always stood up against China on bringing home our two Michaels, condemning the treatment of the Uighurs, offering assistance to Hong Kong, being firm on respect for international rights and everything we must work on together as a multinational world that recognizes the values and rights we all have.
China-Huawei2020-10-07Member of Parliament - O'Toole, Erin (Durham)Conservative Party of CanadaMr. Speaker, our allies have realized that Huawei cannot be part of their 5G future. The government promised a decision before the last election. This week, Great Britain announced that it found critical weaknesses in Huawei's 5G infrastructure. Last week, it was Germany tightening restrictions on Huawei. Once again, under the Prime Minister, Canada is not back; it is hanging back and letting all our allies get the job done.
Will the Prime Minister finally rise today, get tough and ban Huawei from Canadian 5G networks?
Member of Parliament - Trudeau, Justin (Papineau)Mr. Speaker, Canada will always put the security of its citizens and of its infrastructure first and foremost. We have done that every step of the way.
We deeply respect the work of our experts and intelligence services and are working with them to make the right decision. We will listen to their recommendations and move forward. We watch carefully what our allies are doing, and at the same time, we have consistently stood up for Canadian interests and values on the world stage, including against China.
China - Communist Party2020-10-05Member of Parliament - Barrett, Michael (Leeds—Grenville—Thousand Islands and Rideau Lakes)Conservative Party of CanadaMr. Speaker, over the weekend, a gangland shooting occurred where the targets were connected to an international money-laundering syndicate. These individuals are linked to the Chinese Communist Party's efforts to interfere in Canadian politics and disrupt this country's institutions. These same people have rubbed shoulders with well-known Liberals, including former MP Joe Peschisolido, former minister Raymond Chan and former Liberal Party insider Michael Ching. When will these Liberals temper their affection for the Chinese Communist Party and protect Canada's democracy?Member of Parliament - Blair, Bill (Scarborough Southwest)Mr. Speaker, let me be very clear that our government is actually quite firm in dealing with individuals who are attempting to hide their money in Canada, and on organized crime.
I would simply remind the member opposite that in the Conservatives' last four years in office they slashed the budget of law enforcement by over half a billion dollars. They closed 12 integrated proceeds-of-crime units. Tough talk about crime and organized crime and protecting Canadians was backed up by very weak action.
We are reversing the cuts and the slashes that the Conservatives made and we are restoring the capacity of our law enforcement agencies to keep us safe.
China - Hong Kong2020-10-05Member of Parliament - Barrett, Michael (Leeds—Grenville—Thousand Islands and Rideau Lakes)Conservative Party of CanadaMr. Speaker, it is clear that cozying up with the Chinese Communist Party comes with serious consequences. Joe Peschisolido, whose ethical violation these Liberals tried to cover up in this House last week, is one of the Liberals connected with the incident. Many of the individuals pictured with these senior Liberals have ties to the United Front, an organization that Beijing has been using to suppress pro-democracy rallies in Hong Kong. The Liberals have had these ties for years. When will the Prime Minister finally condemn those who are actively trying to undermine democracy here and in Hong Kong?

Member of Parliament - Champagne, François-Philippe (Saint-Maurice—Champlain)Mr. Speaker, we will take no lessons from the Conservatives when it comes to dealing with China. We were the first country in the world to suspend our extradition treaty with Hong Kong. We suspended the export of sensitive equipment to Hong Kong. We are going to announce measures on immigration with respect to Hong Kong. Every step of the way we have fought for human rights. We are standing up for the people of Hong Kong and the 300,000 Canadians who live in Hong Kong.
China - Communist Party2020-10-05Member of Parliament - Barrett, Michael (Leeds—Grenville—Thousand Islands and Rideau Lakes)Conservative Party of CanadaMr. Speaker, just a minute ago the foreign affairs minister said that nobody was going to be tougher on China than the Liberals were, but that is not what he told Chinese state media. He said, “and I would say China, stands out as a beacon of stability, predictability, a rule-based system, a very inclusive society.” That was the foreign affairs minister. He is saying one thing one thing to Canadians and another thing to Chinese state-owned media.
My question for the foreign affairs minister is this. When are he and the Liberal government going to temper their affection for the Chinese Communist Party and start putting the interests of this country, of Canadians, first?

Member of Parliament - Champagne, François-Philippe (Saint-Maurice—Champlain)Mr. Speaker, I am very happy that the member allows me to talk about the leadership we have done around the world when it comes to the Chinese issue.
The member knows very well when I was referring to that, and Canadians at home understand, that the beacon of stability, predictability and rule of law is Canada. Everyone in Canada and around the world understands. That is why we can take a stance in the world, talk for human rights, defend the people of Hong Kong, speak with the Uighurs and speak for the Tibetans.
We will continue to do that at every opportunity.
China - Magnitsky Sanctions2020-09-30Member of Parliament - Chong, Michael (Wellington—Halton Hills)Conservative Party of CanadaMr. Speaker, I commend the government for reimposing sanctions on Belarus, sanctions the previous Conservative government put in place in 2006, sanctions we have been seeking for some time, sanctions the government lifted in 2017. China is violating human rights and international treaties, like the Geneva convention, in its treatment of Canadians Michael Spavor and Michael Kovrig, the Uighurs and the people of Hong Kong.
Will the government now impose sanctions on those responsible in China and Hong Kong?

Member of Parliament - Trudeau, Justin (Papineau)Mr. Speaker, first, with regard to Belarus, we will not be silent as the Government of Belarus continues to commit systematic human rights violations. That is why, in coordination with the U.K. and in support of the people of Belarus, we are imposing sanctions against the Government of Belarus' officials, including Alexander Lukashenko.
With regard to China, we continue to stand up for the interests and rights of Canadians. We continue to demand the safe return of the two Canadians arbitrarily detained by China for political purposes. We continue to raise the plight of the Uighurs. We continue to express concern over Hong Kong and the 300,000 Canadians there.
We will continue to work with the international community on standing up strongly
China - Magnitsky Sanctions2020-09-30Member of Parliament - Chong, Michael (Wellington—Halton Hills)Conservative Party of CanadaMr. Speaker, that answer shows the government's complete incoherence on China.
In July, the foreign minister tells us he is looking at sanctions on Chinese officials. The next day, the government tells Reuters that is off the table. Two weeks ago, the foreign minister tells The Globe and Mail that he is abandoning free trade with China. The same day, Ambassador Barton says we should expand trade and do more in China.
When will the government get its story straight and get serious? When will it start defending Canadian interests and place sanctions on those responsible in China and Hong Kong?
Member of Parliament - Trudeau, Justin (Papineau)Mr. Speaker, every step of the way, this government has stood up to defend Canadian interests, whether it was canola farmers, whether it was our beef and pork producers, whether it was standing up for the two Michaels who have been arbitrarily detained.
We will continue to work with the international community on issues around Hong Kong and issues around the Uighurs, and continue to express our deep concern with the direction that China is taking in its international diplomacy and international actions.
We need to stand united as a world. We will do exactly that.

Canada-China Vaccine Agreement2020-09-25Member of Parliament - Paul-Hus, Pierre (Charlesbourg—Haute-Saint-Charles)Conservative Party of CanadaMr. Speaker, I have quite a story for you this morning.
The Prime Minister signed a vaccine development agreement between the National Research Council of Canada and the state-owned company CanSinoBIO. However, the Chinese government changed its mind and decided to scrap the contract.
I understand that the Chinese communist regime holds a special place in the Prime Minister's heart. However, what Canadians want to know now is how many millions of dollars we have lost to the Chinese regime.
Member of Parliament - Ehsassi, Ali (Willowdale)Mr. Speaker, our government has been working closely with experts and industry partners throughout this pandemic, which has allowed us to take an evidence-based approach to vaccine research and development. In the context of our continued research and evolving evidence, the National Research Council chose to implement the revised expert advice of the Vaccine Task Force and pursue other vaccine candidates. We will continue to actively pursue every promising option for a COVID-19 vaccine.
Canada-China Vaccine Agreement2020-09-25Member of Parliament - Paul-Hus, Pierre (Charlesbourg—Haute-Saint-Charles)Conservative Party of CanadaMr. Speaker, I am not satisfied with that reply.
Canada signed an agreement with a Chinese state-owned company, CanSinoBIO. The Chinese decided to quash the deal. That cost money. To make matters worse, Canadian biological patents were transferred to China. The government still does not understand that the Chinese are detaining our two Michaels, that they veto trade deals whenever they see fit, and, what is more, that they do not give a flying fig about human rights.
Now we would like to know what the Prime Minister thinks about this business.
How can Canada hand over its own intellectual property to the Chinese, knowing that they have no respect for anything?
Member of Parliament - Oliphant, Robert (Don Valley West)Mr. Speaker, I welcome that question because, as everyone in the House knows, Canada has a complex and multi-dimensional relationship with China. Canada engages with China with our eyes wide open. Many of our international partners are facing similar challenges. We actively engage with them constantly to ensure that Canadian interests are upheld, human rights are spoken about and intellectual property is protected.
Our government has been clear about our principles, our commitment to the rule of law, our deep concern for our citizens, including Michael Kovrig and Michael Spavor who have been arbitrarily detained, and our farmers and producers in Canada who seek markets. Canada will remain firm and resolute.
China - COVID-19 Reporting2020-09-24Member of Parliament - Rempel, Michelle (Calgary Nose Hill)Conservative Party of CanadaMr. Speaker, I believe the information the minister has relied upon to date is that COVID-19 is not transmitted from person to person, masks do not work and border controls are quasi-racist. That is the information she is relying upon, so forgive us if we do not believe her.
Why is the she apologizing for Chinese numbers on COVID-19 transmissions? Why is she trusting Chinese numbers more than reviews from tests that Japan has approved?
Member of Parliament - Hajdu, Patty (Thunder Bay—Superior North)Mr. Speaker, as the member opposite may realize, science evolves. In fact, when COVID-19 first arrived on the global stage, not a lot was known about the virus. Every step of the way, we have worked with researchers, scientists and the excellent public health officers across the country to ensure that our response meets the new understandings as they evolve.
This is a dynamic situation. Of course, our advice will change as the science changes around the coronavirus. I am proud of the medical community and the hard-working research community—
The Speaker: The hon. member for Lakeland.
China - Nuctech2020-08-12Member of Parliament - Rempel, Michelle (Calgary Nose Hill)Conservative Party of Canada. Michelle Rempel Garner (Calgary Nose Hill, CPC):
Mr. Speaker, I will be splitting my time with the member for Barrie—Innisfil.
When the request to provide security scanners for Canada's embassies came up, KPrime Technologies responded. However, instead of working with this Calgary-based company to provide sensitive security equipment, the Liberals went with a company that is mired in a major international bribery scandal in Taiwan, and that has links to the Chinese government. Here is the kicker: it was done at a higher cost than what my constituent's company would have charged. Why?
Member of Parliament - Champagne, François-Philippe (Saint-Maurice—Champlain)Hon. François-Philippe Champagne (Minister of Foreign Affairs, Lib.):
Mr. Speaker, as my hon. colleague well knows, the moment I learned about that, we immediately asked the department to launch a review to make sure that security is part of our contracting practices. I want to assure all Canadians and my friends in Calgary that no purchase whatsoever has been made by Global Affairs Canada from that provider. This was only a frame agreement.
I have asked the minister responsible at PSPC to look again at the procurement process for that, and we have launched a review.
China - Nuctech2020-08-12Member of Parliament - Rempel, Michelle (Calgary Nose Hill)Conservative Party of CanadaHon. Michelle Rempel Garner:
Mr. Speaker, the minister is asking us to believe his party, which had no compunction going to the walls for SNC-Lavalin, a company that bribed Moammar Gadhafi's son with prostitutes. He is asking us to believe they knew nothing about a Calgary-based company's legitimate bid to provide sensitive security equipment for embassies, and instead went with a company that, by all intents and purposes, ignores the rules around international bribery scandals.
This is not just about forgetting something. This is ridiculous. When is that review going to be done? It should have been done ahead of time. I want to see it right away, and will it be made public?
Member of Parliament - Champagne, François-Philippe (Saint-Maurice—Champlain)Hon. François-Philippe Champagne:
Mr. Speaker, I am very happy to answer that question. As a former minister of the Crown, the member would know well that the moment I was made aware of that frame agreement, I asked for the review. The review is under way.
 I want to reassure people in Calgary, Edmonton and everywhere across Canada that no purchase has been made whatsoever. There is nothing more important than the security and safety of our people in our embassies around the world, and security will come first every time we make a purchase that could be sensitive for the security of our embassies around the world.
China - Uighurs2020-08-12Member of Parliament - Block, Kelly (Carlton Trail—Eagle Creek)Conservative Party of CanadaMrs. Kelly Block (Carlton Trail—Eagle Creek, CPC):
Mr. Chair, I will be splitting my time with the hon. member for Cariboo—Prince George.
Thanks to the New York Times we know at least 17 manufacturers in China use Uighur forced labour to produce PPE. Despite having a budget that far surpasses the times, PSPC officials could not tell us if the government had purchased PPE manufactured by slave labour. Could the minister?
Member of Parliament - Anand, Anita (Oakville)Hon. Anita Anand (Minister of Public Services and Procurement, Lib.):
Mr. Chair, we in our contracting are ensuring the highest ethical standards for government procurement. When awarding contracts, we at PSPC require suppliers to agree to terms and conditions prohibiting these labour practices and we conduct an integrity check into the background of each of the suppliers.
I, like the member opposite, am very concerned about supply labour issues and am committed to ensuring we are on top of this issue.
China - Uighurs2020-08-12Member of Parliament - Block, Kelly (Carlton Trail—Eagle Creek)Conservative Party of CanadaMrs. Kelly Block:
Mr. Chair, those same officials have also informed us that in order to bid on procurement contracts these manufacturers must simply self-certify they respect human rights. A self-certification in this regard is as trustworthy as a pinky promise. When will the government get serious and ensure taxpayer money is not being used to support the enslavement of Uighurs?
Member of Parliament - Anand, Anita (Oakville)Hon. Anita Anand:
Mr. Chair, I thank the hon. member for our mutual interest in this important topic. I want to emphasize that Canada remains deeply disturbed by the troubling reports she mentioned and we have voiced our concerns. We have taken action by publicly and consistently calling on the Chinese government to end the repression in Xinjiang, for example.
With regard to procurement, it is top of mind for me as minister and I will ensure our department is on top of this in our procurements.
China - Foreign Interference2020-08-12Member of Parliament - Alleslev, Leona (Aurora—Oak Ridges—Richmond Hill)Conservative Party of CanadaMs. Leona Alleslev:
Mr. Chair, at yesterday's China committee it was stated that the People's Republic of China is actively threatening Canadians on Canadian soil who seek to expose China's authoritarian agenda. These individuals have been subjected to everything from physical threats to commercial blacklisting and state-backed cyber-hacking with no protection from Canada.
When will the government introduce legislation to combat foreign influence and protect basic human rights in Canada from aggressive actions of the Chinese Communist Party?
Member of Parliament - Champagne, François-Philippe (Saint-Maurice—Champlain)Hon. François-Philippe Champagne (Minister of Foreign Affairs, Lib.):
Mr. Chair, let me be very clear. The safety and protection of Canadians is paramount to this government. We will never allow any form of foreign interference in Canada by state or non-state actors. Every time there have been allegations, we have taken action with the Minister of Public Safety.
We invite any Canadian who might be subject to any form of such actions as have been described to contact law enforcement authorities. We will always defend the freedom and liberty of Canadians in Canada from foreign interference.
China - Huawei2020-07-22Member of Parliament - Rempel, Michelle (Calgary Nose Hill)Conservative Party of CanadaHon. Michelle Rempel Garner (Calgary Nose Hill, CPC):
Mr. Speaker, I will be splitting my time with the member for Abbotsford.
Per section 25 of the Investment Canada Act, has the minister notified Huawei of his intent to conduct a national security review of Huawei's announced prospective investment?
Member of Parliament - Bains, Navdeep (Mississauga—Malton)Hon. Navdeep Bains (Minister of Innovation, Science and Industry, Lib.):
Mr. Speaker, as the member opposite full well knows, with regard to any 5G deployment and anything that pertains to protecting Canadians, we will take appropriate measures to make sure that we come forward with an appropriate decision that is in the best interests of Canadians.
China - Huawei2020-07-22Member of Parliament - Rempel, Michelle (Calgary Nose Hill)Conservative Party of CanadaHon. Michelle Rempel Garner:
Mr. Speaker, per section 25 of the Investment Canada Act, has the minister notified Huawei of his intent to conduct a national security review, yes or no?
Member of Parliament - Bains, Navdeep (Mississauga—Malton)Hon. Navdeep Bains:
Mr. Speaker, as the member opposite knows, all such transactions taking place in Canada are subject to a national security assessment and we will make sure that continues going forward.
China - Huawei2020-07-22Member of Parliament - Rempel, Michelle (Calgary Nose Hill)Conservative Party of CanadaHon. Michelle Rempel Garner:
Mr. Speaker, on what precise date did the minister notify Huawei of the intention to conduct a national security review?
Member of Parliament - Bains, Navdeep (Mississauga—Malton)Hon. Navdeep Bains:
Mr. Speaker, again, I want to remind the hon. member that when it comes to the deployment of 5G or any transactions occurring in Canada that are subject to the Investment Canada Act, all of the appropriate processes and procedures will be followed.
China - Huawei2020-07-22Member of Parliament - Rempel, Michelle (Calgary Nose Hill)Conservative Party of CanadaHon. Michelle Rempel Garner:
Mr. Speaker, the reason I am asking these questions is that the process I am referring to only has a 45-day window to complete the national security review and provide a recommendation with regard to the project.
Did the Prime Minister include the Time Limits and Other Periods Act in Bill C-20 as a way to kick the Huawei decision down the road for another six months?
Member of Parliament - Bains, Navdeep (Mississauga—Malton)Hon. Navdeep Bains:
Mr. Speaker, the member opposite full well knows that we are engaging with the telecommunications sector, that we are working with our allies and national security experts to make the appropriate decision on behalf of Canadians to ensure that their interests are protected and they are continually protected going forward. That will always remain our priority.
China - Huawei2020-07-22Member of Parliament - Rempel, Michelle (Calgary Nose Hill)Conservative Party of CanadaHon. Michelle Rempel Garner:
Mr. Speaker, does the minister intend to use the Time Limits and Other Periods Act provisions in Bill C-20 to kick the Huawei decision down the road for another six months?
Member of Parliament - Bains, Navdeep (Mississauga—Malton)Hon. Navdeep Bains:
Mr. Speaker, we will continue to do our due diligence when it comes to the deployment of 5G in Canada. We have been very clear that this is an important technology and that it needs to be deployed in a very safe and secure manner. That will guide our decision-making process.
China - Nuctech2020-07-21Member of Parliament - Chiu, Kenny (Steveston—Richmond East)Conservative Party of CanadaMr. Kenny Chiu (Steveston—Richmond East, CPC):
Mr. Speaker, the media has reported on the dictator-admiring PM, and it now reports that the government has hired the Chinese state-owned company Nuctech to equip our embassies abroad with security equipment. In addition to raising grave security issues, this decision ignores the complicity of Nuctech in the Chinese state's genocide of Uighur Muslims. Nuctech, along with companies such as Dahua and Hikvision, have provided technological support for the Chinese state's mass atrocities.
Why do we continue to seek commercial co-operation between the government and companies which are complicit in genocide?
Member of Parliament - Champagne, François-Philippe (Saint-Maurice—Champlain)Hon. François-Philippe Champagne (Minister of Foreign Affairs, Lib.):
Mr. Speaker, as Canadians have had the chance the hear today, it would be good if the members on the other side would stop misleading Canadians. I was clear to Canadians yesterday that no purchase has been made under that agreement.
I have asked officials to give me all the facts and details. I have asked that we review our purchasing practices, and I have asked that we continue to improve the security and safety of our embassies around the world. No purchase has been made under that contract.
China - Hong Kong2020-07-08Member of Parliament - Sweet, David (Flamborough—Glanbrook)Conservative Party of CanadaMr. Speaker, on two previous occasions, I have questioned the government in regard to human rights violations by the Chinese Communist Party in China and Hong Kong, and I have only received expressions of varying degrees of concern.
 I am thankful that the government actually rescinded the extradition treaty with Hong Kong. Could the government tell us what other steps it is taking to assist the 300,000 Canadians in Hong Kong and open the door to Hong Kong refugees?
Member of Parliament - Champagne, François-Philippe (Saint-Maurice—Champlain)Hon. François-Philippe Champagne:
Mr. Speaker, not only did we suspend the extradition treaty, but we stopped the export of sensitive items to Hong Kong. We updated our travel advisory, and tonight I will have a call with Five Eyes colleagues to explore with colleagues in the international community the additional steps we can take.
The Prime Minister has been clear that we will be looking at other measures, including immigration, and we will come back to the House in due course.
China - Uighurs2020-07-08Member of Parliament - Sweet, David (Flamborough—Glanbrook)Conservative Party of CanadaMr. David Sweet:
Mr. Speaker, I am sure that those who are refugees would like that exploration to be done expeditiously.
What measures are being taken to reassess our relationship with the People's Republic of China, given new evidence from the Associated Press of forceful population limitations being imposed on Uighurs by the CCP, especially given that these kinds of acts are indicators of genocide?
Member of Parliament - Champagne, François-Philippe (Saint-Maurice—Champlain)Hon. François-Philippe Champagne:
Mr. Speaker, to go back to the member's previous question, I can point to Chris Patten, the former Governor of Hong Kong, who has expressed support for the measures taken by Canada, and the leadership by Canada when it comes to Hong Kong.
When it comes to the Uighur question, we are deeply disturbed. We should all be disturbed in the House by these allegations and the reports that we have seen. We will continue to work with the international community—
China - Uighurs2020-07-08Member of Parliament - Genuis, Garnett (Sherwood Park—Fort Saskatchewan)Conservative Party of CanadaMr. Garnett Genuis (Sherwood Park—Fort Saskatchewan, CPC):
Mr. Speaker, I am also deeply disturbed, but we should be clear that our thoughts and our prayers are not enough.
Is the government prepared to recognize that Muslims in China are facing an ongoing genocide?
Member of Parliament - Champagne, François-Philippe (Saint-Maurice—Champlain)Hon. François-Philippe Champagne (Minister of Foreign Affairs, Lib.): 
Mr. Speaker, I would say that we went well beyond words. We took action, and the world noticed.
When it came to Taiwan, when it comes to Hong Kong, Canada not only spoke up, but was front and centre in taking action to stand up and speak
China - Uighurs2020-07-08Member of Parliament - Genuis, Garnett (Sherwood Park—Fort Saskatchewan)Conservative Party of CanadaMr. Garnett Genuis:
Mr. Speaker, regarding Uighurs specifically, is the government prepared to recognize that Uighur Muslims in China face an ongoing genocide?
Member of Parliament - Champagne, François-Philippe (Saint-Maurice—Champlain)Hon. François-Philippe Champagne:
Mr. Speaker, let me be very clear with Canadians and the House. We are deeply disturbed by the reports that we have seen. We are consulting with the international community. Canada will continue, as it always has, to speak up and stand up for human rights around the world, and that will be the case when it comes to the Uighurs. I have raised this issue, both privately and in public, with the Chinese authorities.
China - Uighurs2020-07-08Member of Parliament - Genuis, Garnett (Sherwood Park—Fort Saskatchewan)Conservative Party of CanadaMr. Garnett Genuis:
Mr. Speaker, if the minister is not prepared to use the word “genocide”, will he recognize that what we are reading about constitutes crimes against humanity under international law?
Member of Parliament - Champagne, François-Philippe (Saint-Maurice—Champlain)Hon. François-Philippe Champagne:
Mr. Speaker, let me be clear again. I will answer very clearly for the member.
As I said, we are deeply disturbed by the reports, as everyone in the House should be. We are consulting with the international community. We will speak up. We will stand up for human rights with the Uighurs and with all the ethnic minorities in China, which are—
China - Magnitsky Sanctions2020-07-08Member of Parliament - Genuis, Garnett (Sherwood Park—Fort Saskatchewan)Conservative Party of CanadaMr. Garnett Genuis:
Mr. Speaker, we all feel those feelings, but feeling disturbed is not enough. I asked about genocide. I asked about crimes against humanity. Let me ask one more important question.
Yes or no, Minister: Is the government prepared to impose Magnitsky sanctions on those involved in gross violations of human rights in Xinjiang, in Hong Kong or elsewhere in the Republic of China?
Member of Parliament - Champagne, François-Philippe (Saint-Maurice—Champlain)Hon. François-Philippe Champagne:
Mr. Speaker, the answer is simple. Yes, we are considering all the options when it comes to standing up for human rights. As I said to the member many times, and I welcome him, we should speak with one voice. This is not a political issue. This is about fundamental values and principles that Canadians who are watching from home share with us. There are no politics in that. Canada will stand up and speak up for human rights around the world.
China2020-06-17Member of Parliament - Vis, Brad (Mission—Matsqui—Fraser Canyon)Conservative Party of CanadaMadam Chair, Canadians are concerned about our national sovereignty under this Liberal government, and for good reason. They've shut down the Special Committee on Canada-China Relations. The National Research Council of Canada sees no issue collaborating with CanSino Biologics and by extension, the People's Liberation Army of China, on the development of a COVID-19 vaccine. Now we've learned that Minister Champagne, Canada's top diplomat, has liabilities to China's state bank of over a million dollars. Can the federal government provide some shred of assurance that they are committed to defending Canadian sovereignty in the face of an ever-encroaching Beijing government?Member of Parliament - Ng, Mary (Markham—Thornhill)I want to thank the honourable member for that question. Canada has a complex multidimensional relationship with China, and it certainly presents challenges. Our position is clear. Our engagement with China is “eyes wide open”. Canada has been clear about our principles and our commitment to the rule of law, our deep concern for our citizens. We continue to advocate and fight for the release of our Canadian citizens, Michael Spavor and Michael Kovrig. We continue to defend our farmers and our producers. We're going to remain firm and resolute in defending our principles and our interests. Thank you, Madam Chair.
China - Huawei2020-06-17Member of Parliament - Vis, Brad (Mission—Matsqui—Fraser Canyon)Conservative Party of CanadaRegarding Canadian interests, when can we expect a decision on Huawei, or should Canadians plan for another delay by the government?Member of Parliament - Blair, Bill (Scarborough Southwest)Thank you very much, Madam Chair. Madam Chair, we've been very clear that we are conducting a comprehensive review in examining not just technical considerations, but deeply considering the security concerns.
China - Huawei2020-06-16Member of Parliament - Scheer, Andrew (Regina—Qu'Appelle)Conservative Party of CanadaMr. Chair, Canadians cannot wait. He has run down the clock on parliamentary sittings and he still refuses to make these changes to get more help to Canadians.
Today, we learned that Telus has installed Huawei technology in downtown Ottawa. There are over 80 sites across the National Capital Region that have Huawei technology installed. Some of these sites are very near sensitive government institutions, like government departments, the National Research Council, RCMP headquarters and the Bank of Canada. How long has the Prime Minister known that Huawei technology has been installed in the Ottawa area?
Member of Parliament - Trudeau, Justin (Papineau)Mr. Chair, first off, on the issue of Parliament, Parliament has been meeting four times a week over the past many weeks and members of the opposition have been able to continue to ask questions on COVID-19 and on a broad range of subjects; and, indeed, every two weeks the finance department puts forward at finance committee the full transparent measures of what we've done, so that parliamentarians can study it. We are continuing to work in this crisis.
At the same time—
 Mr. Ziad Aboultaif (Edmonton Manning, CPC): [inaudible] the question.
Right Hon. Justin Trudeau: At the same time, in regard to Huawei technology there are strict rules for companies tofollow and we assume that they all will follow those.
The Chair: We'll pause for a second and stop the clock.
I want to remind the honourable members who are joining us virtually that heckling really does disrupt the whole session. Your face does come up and we do see who it is, so I just want to make sure that you're aware of that.
Now we'll go back to Mr. Scheer. We have a minute and 10 seconds left.
Please proceed
China - MINA Mortgages2020-06-15Member of Parliament - Genuis, Garnett (Sherwood Park—Fort Saskatchewan)Conservative Party of CanadaMr. Chair, we know that the Minister of Foreign Affairs has champagne tastes in London flats, but it's his champagne mortgages that Canadians are concerned about. Specifically, why did the minister only disclose the complete extent of his personal debt to the Chinese government on June 4 of this year?Member of Parliament - Rodriguez, Pablo (Honoré-Mercier)Mr. Chair, as you know, during politics, the two mortgages and the other liabilities and assets from the minister have been fully disclosed to the Ethics Commission and placed on the online public registry, Mr. Chair. It's public, Mr. Chair, public.
China - MINA Mortgages2020-06-15Member of Parliament - Genuis, Garnett (Sherwood Park—Fort Saskatchewan)Conservative Party of CanadaWhen the minister owes over a million dollars to the Chinese government, people have a right to ask him questions. When will the Minister of Foreign Affairs show up?Member of Parliament - Rodriguez, Pablo (Honoré-Mercier)The minister shows up every day, Mr. Chair. He shows up and works for Canadians, Mr. Chair. Once again, those are public documents. Everything the minister did is public, Mr. Chair. I still don't know why theyask questions on things that they can—
The Chair: We'll now go back to Mr. Genuis.
China - MINA Mortgages2020-06-15Member of Parliament - Genuis, Garnett (Sherwood Park—Fort Saskatchewan)Conservative Party of CanadaMr. Chair, he doesn't even he doesn't even have to come to the House. All he has to do is appear on the screen. Where is the minister? Why is he hiding? Why won't he answer questions about his personal debt to the Chinese government?Member of Parliament - Rodriguez, Pablo (Honoré-Mercier)Mr. Chair, if he goes online he's going to get the information.
China - Huawei2020-06-15Member of Parliament - Genuis, Garnett (Sherwood Park—Fort Saskatchewan)Conservative Party of CanadaMr. Chair, the minister is hiding. Let's ask some specific questions about their China policy. What is the impact on the decision-making? Three-quarters of Canadians don't want Huawei involved in our 5G network. Will the minister put the interests of Canadians ahead of the interests of his creditors and say no to Huawei?Member of Parliament - Bains, Navdeep (Mississauga—Malton)Mr. Chair, when it comes to 5G deployment, we are right now currently undergoing a comprehensive review. We have been absolutely clear with the allies and with Canadians that we never have and never will compromise Canadians' national interests.
China - AIIB2020-06-15Member of Parliament - Genuis, Garnett (Sherwood Park—Fort Saskatchewan)Conservative Party of CanadaMr. Chair, I think Canadians would be concerned to hear that it's routine for the transport of viruses to Chinese military-affiliated labs.
When Champagne was the parliamentary secretary for finance, the government decided to give hundreds of millions of dollars to the Asian Infrastructure Investment Bank, bankrolling Chinese state-controlled development projects in Asia with weak labour, human rights and environmental standards. Will the minister put Canadian taxpayers ahead of his personal creditors and support a pullout from the Communist Party-controlled development bank?
Member of Parliament - Rodriguez, Pablo (Honoré-Mercier)Once again, Mr. Chair, the member is trying to connect the dots and I don't know exactly where he is going from here. Everything is public. There's a thing called Google and he can go on it and check the information.
China - MINA Mortgages2020-06-15Member of Parliament - Genuis, Garnett (Sherwood Park—Fort Saskatchewan)Conservative Party of CanadaThank you, Mr. Chair.
 The public can listen to this and I'm sure this exchange will also be available on Google and the public can draw its own conclusion.
 We have failures on 5G, failures when it comes to the transport of deadly viruses and failures when it comes to giving over $400 million to the Asian Infrastructure Investment Bank. It's clear that the Bank of China's investment in Minister Champagne is paying off. It's time for the minister to settle his debt with the communist government and not settle it on the backs of Canadians. When will the minister be here, in the House, and answer questions about this mortgage?
Member of Parliament - Rodriguez, Pablo (Honoré-Mercier)The member should be cautious with what he is saying in the House, Mr. Chair. This is
serious stuff. The minister is actually working extremely hard for all Canadians, doing his job correctly, Mr. Chair. We're talking about public information. Once again, let him go to Google and google it. That's it.
China - MINA Mortgages2020-06-11Member of Parliament - Scheer, Andrew (Regina—Qu'Appelle)Conservative Party of CanadaWell, Mr. Chair, she must have been talking about herself and her own party during her response, and Conservatives stand ready the second she wants to recall Parliament. We will be there to get the help that Canadians expect. But the question was about another Liberal minister getting into trouble because of a fancy European property. This time, it's the Minister of Foreign Affairs, Monsieur Champagne, who owns two posh apartments in London, and owes an arm of the Chinese government over $1 million. Does the Deputy Prime Minister think it's appropriate to have a minister of the Crown owing an arm of the Chinese government over $1 million?Member of Parliament - Freeland, Chrystia (University—Rosedale)Mr. Chair, Minister Champagne disclosed those two mortgages along with all other
liabilities and assets to the Ethics Commissioner, and they have been placed on the online public registry since the minister entered politics. It has been clearly disclosed. Everyone is aware of it, including all relevant government agencies and our Ethics Commissioner, and Canadians have all the transparency they need and deserve.
China - MINA Mortgages2020-06-11Member of Parliament - Scheer, Andrew (Regina—Qu'Appelle)Conservative Party of CanadaJust a simple question for the Deputy Prime Minister. Have Mr. Champagne's mortgages come up for renewal since he has been a member of Parliament?Member of Parliament - Freeland, Chrystia (University—Rosedale)Mr. Chair, while I, of course, am extremely familiar with all the positions our government
takes on foreign policy, I'm afraid I'm not familiar with the details of the personal—
The Chair: Back to Mr. Scheer
China - MINA Mortgages2020-06-11Member of Parliament - Scheer, Andrew (Regina—Qu'Appelle)Conservative Party of CanadaIt's a relevant point, because if he was a sitting member of Parliament and the mortgage came up for renewal and he decided to renew with the bank that is run by the Communist Party of China, the negotiations and dealings around that would be very relevant. Will the Minister of Foreign Affairs disclose what interest rate he is being charged for the two mortgages on his two London flats?Member of Parliament - Freeland, Chrystia (University—Rosedale)Chair, since the Conservatives have chosen to go into matters of personal finance and property arrangements of members of this House, I might point out that of the two people exchanging ideas right now, one of us lives on government property. When—
[Français]
Le président: Je cède la parole maintenant avec M. Brunelle-Duceppe.
China - MINA Mortgages2020-06-11Member of Parliament - Schmale, Jamie (Haliburton—Kawartha Lakes—Brock)Conservative Party of CanadaLast night the Globe and Mail revealed that the Minister of Foreign Affairs has two mortgages valued at nearly $2 million with the state-owned Bank of China. What interest rate is Minister Champagne paying?Member of Parliament - Rodriguez, Pablo (Honoré-Mercier)Mr. Chair, the minister lived many years in the U.K. He purchased two apartments in London, one in 2009 and the other one in 2013, which he continues to own. Since entering politics, the two mortgages and other liabilities and assets have been fully disclosed.
China - MINA Mortgages2020-06-11Member of Parliament - Schmale, Jamie (Haliburton—Kawartha Lakes—Brock)Conservative Party of CanadaDoes the Prime Minister believe it's appropriate for his foreign minister to be so personally indebted to the Communist Party of China?Member of Parliament - Rodriguez, Pablo (Honoré-Mercier)As I said, Mr. Chair, the two mortgages and other liabilities have been fully disclosed to the Ethics Commissioner and placed on the online public registry. Mr. Chair, everything is public.
China - MINA Mortgages2020-06-11Member of Parliament - Schmale, Jamie (Haliburton—Kawartha Lakes—Brock)Conservative Party of CanadaMr. Chair, the foreign minister is required to obtain a high security clearance not only to attend cabinet but also because he has access to some of Canada's most secret intelligence. Can the Prime Minister explain how his minister obtained the security clearance, given his financial obligations to the Communist Party of China?Member of Parliament - Rodriguez, Pablo (Honoré-Mercier)As I said earlier, since entering politics, the two mortgages and liabilities and assets have been fully disclosed to the Ethics Commissioner—fully disclosed, Mr. Chair—and placed on the online public registry. Everything is public.
China - MINA Mortgages2020-06-11Member of Parliament - Schmale, Jamie (Haliburton—Kawartha Lakes—Brock)Conservative Party of CanadaThe minister has placed himself in a blatant conflict of interest. It's absolutely inappropriate for him to have a financial relationship with a Chinese government-owned bank. Will the minister immediately remove himself from his conflict and find a new bank to do business with?Member of Parliament - Rodriguez, Pablo (Honoré-Mercier)That's a little bit far-fetched, Mr. Chair. I thought this was an important meeting to discuss the pandemic and important things related to the lives of Canadians, including the creation of jobs, saving jobs and helping Canadians across the country—
China - MINA Mortgages2020-06-11Member of Parliament - Schmale, Jamie (Haliburton—Kawartha Lakes—Brock)Conservative Party of CanadaMr. Chair, there seems to be a real conflict of interest here. Maybe the question should be this: Is this why Minister Champagne could barely say thank you to Taiwan for the medical supplies they sent us?Member of Parliament - Rodriguez, Pablo (Honoré-Mercier)Mr. Chair, once again, everything has been fully disclosed to the Ethics Commissioner and placed online on the public registry. Everything is public, Mr. Chair. It is fully public.
China - MINA Mortgages2020-06-11Member of Parliament - Schmale, Jamie (Haliburton—Kawartha Lakes—Brock)Conservative Party of CanadaTwo Canadians have been jailed in China since 2018. Is the Minister of Foreign Affairs
working to free them, or is this conflict hampering those efforts?
Member of Parliament - Ng, Mary (Markham—Thornhill)Mr. Chair, I want to assure the honourable member that the two Canadians remain our absolute priority. We are going to continue to tirelessly work to secure their immediate release and to stand up for them as a government, as Canadians.
China - Magnitsky Sanctions2020-06-10Member of Parliament - Chiu, Kenny (Steveston—Richmond East)Conservative Party of CanadaMr. Chair, the Hong Kong government has arrested 9,000 civilians just in the past year. This is equivalent to 42,000 people proportional to Canada's population. It is anticipated that more unjust incarceration will occur as Beijing is imposing the national security law in Hong Kong. I ask the minister has our government started preparing a list of names for Magnitsky-style sanctions, yes or no, please?Member of Parliament - Garneau, Marc (Notre-Dame-de-Grâce—Westmount)Mr. Chair, as we have said, with our allies, we are deeply concerned with Beijing's decision to impose a national security law on Hong Kong. With hundreds of thousands of Canadians living in Hong Kong, we have a vested interest in its stability and prosperity, the foundation of which are Hong Kong's relative autonomy and basic freedoms. The proposed law would also undermine the one country, two systems framework.
China - Magnitsky Sanctions2020-06-10Member of Parliament - Chiu, Kenny (Steveston—Richmond East)Conservative Party of CanadaI thank the minister for responding again, however word of mouth is not enough. It's time for
action because the Chinese embassy has said in response to Canada's express concern that they deplore, that they reject and condemn our response and our concerns thus far.  What are the conditions of this government using Magnitsky sanctions should China continue to incarcerate Canadians and jeopardize the human rights of its citizens?
Member of Parliament - Garneau, Marc (Notre-Dame-de-Grâce—Westmount)Mr. Chair, we have been very clear. We will continue to encourage all parties to engage in peaceful and meaningful dialogue to address the legitimate concerns expressed by the Hong Kong population Canada will always support and promote freedom of speech, freedom of expression and freedom of the press around
the world.
China - Hong Kong2020-06-08Member of Parliament - Sweet, David (Flamborough—Glanbrook)Conservative Party of CanadaWhat concrete steps has the government taken in the last two weeks to help Hong Kongers?Member of Parliament - Ng, Mary (Markham—Thornhill)Mr. Chair, our government has been clear.
 Our government stands with our allies, making a strong statement expressing our deep concern—
The Chair: Back to Mr. Sweet.
China - Consular Cases2020-06-08Member of Parliament - Sweet, David (Flamborough—Glanbrook)Conservative Party of CanadaMr. Chair, for 14 years, Huseyin Celil has been in prison in China, and now the two Michaels. What exactly are they doing to get their release?Member of Parliament - Ng, Mary (Markham—Thornhill)Mr. Chair, the two Michaels are Canadians, and are our absolute top priority. We will continue to work tirelessly to secure their immediate release and to stand up for them, as a Canadian government and as [Inaudible].
China - Winter Olympics 20222020-06-08Member of Parliament - Sweet, David (Flamborough—Glanbrook)Conservative Party of CanadaChair, the IOC promotes the role of the games in advancing human rights. Given the human rights record of the Chinese communist regime, many are calling for a boycott of the 2022 Olympics. What is the government's position on this?Member of Parliament - Ng, Mary (Markham—Thornhill)Mr. Chair, our government will always stand up for human rights. We have a record of doing this, and we will continue to do this.
China- Canola2020-06-08Member of Parliament - Rood, Lianne (Lambton—Kent—Middlesex)Conservative Party of Canada It was your government that negotiated the last deal. Anyway, Mr. Chair, Liberal mistakes have already cost our soy and canola farmers export markets. When Australia  spoke out against China, they were slapped with 80% tariffs on their barley. Now Canadian ginseng farmers are unable to sell their crop to China.
Has the minister spoken with her Chinese counterpart to rectify the situation? What concrete actions will this Liberal government take to help these farmers.
Member of Parliament - Bibeau, Marie-Claude (Compton—Stanstead)Restoring full market access for canola seed exports to China is a top priority for us. The issues faced by the canola sector in the last year underscore the critical importance of diversification to reduce risk of market closures or over reliance on a single export market.
China - Hong Kong2020-06-04Member of Parliament - May, Elizabeth (Saanich—Gulf Islands)Green PartyThrough you to the Prime Minister, there is a pattern in history where sometimes leaders will use a crisis that absorbs people's attention to do things they otherwise might not do for fear of global condemnation such as in a pandemic we see President Bolsonaro of Brazil turning more brutality against indigenous people in the Amazon.  My questions want to focus on the People's Republic of China, which I think is doing the same thing, and on Prime Minister Netanyahu in Israel. To the question of China, we now see the People's Republic of China cracking down in Hong Kong in ways that violate the commitment to one country, two systems.
What will the Government of Canada do to help Canadian citizens even if they are dual citizens of People's Republic to get home to Canada?
Member of Parliament - Champagne, François-Philippe (Saint-Maurice—Champlain) Mr. Chair, I would like to thank my colleague for the question.
We know that one country, two systems is what has been underpinning the liberty and freedom enjoyed by the people in Hong Kong. We are very concerned and deeply concerned by the imposition unilaterally by Beijing of a national security law, which would undermine that very foundation. What we're looking at, Mr. Chair, is we're working with allies to look at the implications that imposition would have on the various arrangements and agreements we have in place with Hong Kong.
China - Hong Kong2020-06-03Member of Parliament - Kent, Peter (Thornhill)Conservative Party of CanadaThe Government of Canada speaks generally of 300,000 Canadian citizens in Hong Kong. Can the Minister of Immigration tell us more exactly how many Canadian citizens are currently resident in Hong Kong?Member of Parliament - Mendicino, Marco (Eglinton—Lawrence)The first thing that I would like to clarify, Mr. Chair, is that those Canadians who are in
Hong Kong and elsewhere have a right to return home. With regard to those who wish to seek asylum, we have a robust system in place that ensures that everyone making a claim will receive a fair hearing. That will continue.
China - Hong Kong2020-06-03Member of Parliament - Kent, Peter (Thornhill)Conservative Party of CanadaMinister, how many of the Canadian citizens currently resident in Hong Kong—I would like at least an estimate from you—currently hold valid Canadian passports? How many have recently made passport applications?Member of Parliament - Mendicino, Marco (Eglinton—Lawrence)As my honourable colleague knows, those citizens who do hold citizenship do have a right to return home. We will continue to monitor the situation very closely to ensure those who wish to exercise their right do so in accordance with the health and safety  measures in place at the border.
China - Hong Kong2020-06-03Member of Parliament - Kent, Peter (Thornhill)Conservative Party of CanadaThese answers underline the deficiencies of this temporary committee. With respect to the minister, the PMO doesn't like straight answers. At least, if the Standing Committee on Immigration were sitting we would get straight answers from the deputy minister, department officials, and the occasional witness allowed by the government. Again, does the minister have any estimate of the number of Canadian citizens currently resident in Hong Kong?Member of Parliament - Mendicino, Marco (Eglinton—Lawrence)Mr. Chair, as my honourable colleague said, there is an estimate of approximately 300,000 who hold Canadian citizenship. Those individuals do have the right to return home. When they exercise that right they must do so in accordance with the travel restrictions in place to reduce the likelihood of the spread of COVID-19.
China - Hong Kong2020-06-03Member of Parliament - Kent, Peter (Thornhill)Conservative Party of Canada[Inaudible] the minister. Has the department updated its emergency contingency plans in the event
of worst possible outcomes in Hong Kong?
Member of Parliament - Mendicino, Marco (Eglinton—Lawrence)Mr. Chair, I know that my colleague, the Minister of Global Affairs is working very closely
with our representatives in that region. In the meantime, our officials are also providing—
The Chair: We'll now go back to Mr. Kent.
China - Hong Kong2020-06-03Member of Parliament - Kent, Peter (Thornhill)Conservative Party of CanadaMinister, last year, Canada signed members of global affairs standing rapid deployment team to our consulate general in Hong Kong to assist the mission and Canadian citizens in that territory. Is that team in place today?Member of Parliament - Champagne, François-Philippe (Saint-Maurice—Champlain)Mr. Chair, I would like to thank the member for his important questions. We have the current amount of staff that we need in Hong Kong. As the need would be, we would be prepared, like we've done in Wuhan and like we've done when we repatriated Canadians from more than 110 countries. We can deploy these teams. They are rapid-response teams. As the case may be we—
The Chair: Back to Mr. Kent.
China - WeChat2020-06-03Member of Parliament - Kent, Peter (Thornhill)Conservative Party of CanadaIf I could ask a final question to the Minister of Digital Government, can the minister tell us whether she read the House of Commons cyber security email titled, “IT Security Alert: Risks with the WeChat Application”?Member of Parliament - Duclos, Jean-Yves (Québec)Thank you, Mr. Chair. The minister in question has already made clear that this is not part of her own work. This is something else in her network which is now out of the network and she has clearly said that the views expressed by that person are not her views.
China - WeChat2020-06-03Member of Parliament - Aboultaif, Ziad (Edmonton Manning)Conservative Party of CanadaIt was revealed that the Liberal minister, Joyce Murray, allowed her WeChat social media
platform to be used to advance the interest of an arm of the Chinese Communist Party.
Does the minister accept responsibility for this attack on Canadian journalists?
Member of Parliament - Duclos, Jean-Yves (Québec)The minister made clear two things. First, that person was not part of her network. Secondly, she does not share the views that were shared.
China2020-06-03Member of Parliament - Aboultaif, Ziad (Edmonton Manning)Conservative Party of CanadaIs the minister aware of the espionage activities that the United Front carries out on behalf of the Chinese Communist Party? Yes or no.Member of Parliament - Duclos, Jean-Yves (Québec)Monsieur le président, je vais répéter en français ce que j'ai dit en anglais. La ministre a dit deux choses très clairement: la première, la personne ne fait pas partie de son réseau; la deuxième, les avis et opinions exprimés par cette personne ne sont pas partagés par la ministre.
China - Huawei2020-06-02Member of Parliament - Scheer, Andrew (Regina—Qu'Appelle)Conservative Party of CanadaMr. Chair, now that Bell Canada has decided to partner with Erickson to deliver its 5G
network, the Liberals will undoubtedly ban Huawei, but the Liberal inaction on Huawei is just another example of this government's weak leadership. Instead of deciding for himself a year ago, the Prime Minister is forcing the business community to make the decision for him. Why couldn't the Prime Minister have shown some backbone and banned Huawei a year ago?
Member of Parliament - Trudeau, Justin (Papineau)Mr. Chair, our approach every step of the way has been to listen to experts, to work
with allies, to listen to the counsel of our security and intelligence community that has been looking into this issue. We know we need to make sure that Canadian businesses, Canadians, Canadian infrastructure are protected at the same time
as we remain competitive in the world. That has guided our approach on this from the beginning.
China - Huawei2020-06-02Member of Parliament - Paul-Hus, Pierre (Charlesbourg—Haute-Saint-Charles)Conservative Party of CanadaJe crois que d'accepter qu'un conjoint ou une conjointe vienne à la maison n'est pas mettre les Canadiens à risque. Il y a un sondage fait au Canada, actuellement, qui détermine qu'une grande majorité des Canadiens ne fait aucunement confiance au régime communiste chinois et ne veulent pas avoir Huawei au Canada. Il y a une bonne nouvelle: on apprend aujourd'hui que BCE et Telus ont décidé de ne pas faire affaire avec Huawei. Le gouvernement, n'ayant plus à gérer BCE et Telus, est-il en mesure de dire aujourd'hui qu'il n'y a aucune autre compagnie qui va utiliser Huawei, et que cette compagnie va être barrée pour le 5G?Member of Parliament - Guilbeault, Steven (Laurier—Sainte-Marie) Merci de la question.
 Notre gouvernement va toujours protéger nos réseaux et faire en sorte que les Canadiens et les Canadiennes bénéficient des dernières innovations en matière de télécommunication. Un examen des technologies 5G, des considérations économiques et des sûretés sont en cours.
 Nous allons nous assurer que la sûreté des Canadiens et des Canadiennes et leurs données privées ne seront jamais compromises.
China - Huawei2020-06-02Member of Parliament - Paul-Hus, Pierre (Charlesbourg—Haute-Saint-Charles)Conservative Party of CanadaJe voudrais rappeler au ministre que cela fait des années qu'on est là-dessus, et que le SCRS a
confirmé que Huawei n'était pas fiable à la sécurité du Canada. Il y a deux Canadiens injustement détenus par le régime communiste chinois. Le même régime continue de mentir au monde concernant la COVID‑19 et bloque nos exportations, en plus de terroriser les citoyens de Hong Kong. Quand le premier ministre va-t-il confirmer qu'il va bannir Huawei du développement de la technologie 5G au Canada? C'est une question simple.
Member of Parliament - Blair, Bill (Scarborough Southwest)Hon. Bill Blair: Mr. Chair, let's be very clear. Canadians deserve to have access to the most beneficial 5G technology and, at the same time, the safety and security of Canada's digital environment will be of paramount consideration. We're
doing the work required and we're not basing that agenda on some media report, but, rather, to ensure that all scientific and security factors are taken into account. We are engaged in robust discussions with our Five Eyes partners, including the United States, and all of our security agencies.
Mr. Chair, we'll do the work necessary to—
¸ (1415) 
China - Hong Kong2020-06-01Member of Parliament - Chong, Michael (Wellington—Halton Hills)Conservative Party of CanadaMr. Chair, the full parliament with its full powers sat through two world wars, previous
pandemics and the October Crisis in 1970. The government of those days did not seek the suspension of this House. The government is not only failing to defend democracy here but also abroad. It can't utter the word “Taiwan”. It is failing to
be strong and clear on Hong Kong and while the situation today is not that of decades past, it is clear that Canada in the past has stood for the rights of people in Hong Kong. Canada needs to take much stronger diplomatic action on Hong
Kong. There are some 300,000 Canadians living there and they are looking for the government's support. So when will this government act? When will it threaten economic sanctions, like the U.S. administration has? When will it provide asylum and a clear path to citizenship like the U.K. government has? When will it speak up against the Communist Party of China's united front workers operating here in this country? When will it do like Australia did in calling for an international investigation of COVID-19, an organized international coalition of like-minded democracies
to defend Hong Kongers and the violation of the Sino-British treaty?
Member of Parliament - Champagne, François-Philippe (Saint-Maurice—Champlain) Mr. Chair, I'd like to thank the member for this very important question.
 Mr. Chair, I'll remind the member to look at our statement of the 28th of May. It's already done, Mr. Chair. Canada has spoken to the world, has spoken up. We've made a first declaration with our colleagues in Australia and the U.K. to say that we have deep concerns.
 We all know, Mr. Chair, that the [Inaudible] system, the high degree of liberty and freedom enjoyed by the people in Hong Kong has made Hong Kong what it is today, a beacon when it comes to trade and financing, and we know and we have experienced deep concern. Again, on the 28th of May, with the United States, with the United Kingdom, with Australia, Canada was front and centre with these countries to say we have deep concerns that the imposition of a national security law by Beijing would undermine the very foundation, the very principles that have made Hong Kong so successful, Mr. Chair, and we said at that time that we with our international partners would look at the implications and the ramifications that it may have on our arrangement.
And Mr. Chair, I've called a meeting of our Five Eyes tonight. I'll be chairing a meeting of our Five Eyes with the foreign ministers. We will be discussing, we'll continue to raise our voices, to stand up for the people of Hong Kong,
and we will do it with our allies, Mr. Chair.
Canada-China FIPA2020-06-01Member of Parliament - Manly, Paul (Nanaimo—Ladysmith )Green PartyThis week marks the 31st anniversary of the Tiananmen Square massacre, and we are currently seeing repression of the democracy movement in Hong Kong. We know that communist China oppresses minority groups and does not respect human rights.
 In spite of this knowledge, the Harper Conservative government signed a lopsided and anti-democratic investment treaty with China in 2012, the Canada-China FIPA. This Conservative deal gave Chinese state-owned corporations extraordinary powers to challenge our democratic decisions through a secretive private tribunal system.
In the years since the FIPA was signed, with no vote in Parliament, Chinese state-owned corporations have been purchasing Canadian assets and resources. These corporations can seek financial compensation from Canadian
taxpayers for the loss of potential profit, when our laws and policies get in the way of their profit taking.
Can the government tell us whether any of these Chinese corporations have threatened to use the anti-democratic investor-state provisions of the FIPA to seek financial compensation from Canadian taxpayers?
Member of Parliament - Champagne, François-Philippe (Saint-Maurice—Champlain)Mr. Speaker, I'd like to thank the member for this very important question.
 As I'm sure the member will know, Canada is setting up with its allies around the world to protect the freedom and democracy that has been enjoyed by the people in Hong Kong. As he knows, we have issued a declaration with a number of allies we have called upon, making sure that measures remain in place to protect the freedom and liberty of people of Hong Kong.
 We know that the [Inaudible] treaty system has provided the framework under which the people of Hong Kong have been able to create an economy that is resilient and have made Hong Kong a place where people want to do business,
commerce and trade.
Mr. Speaker, we have expressed our deep concern. I would refer the member to the joint statement we have issued with the United States, Australia and the United Kingdom. We have spoken with one voice and we have said we have
deep concerns that the actions by Beijing would undermine—if they were to proceed with this national security law unilaterally—the bedrock of what has made Hong Kong, and that we will review the impact that…
The Acting Chair (Mr. Bruce Stanton): Mr. Manly, you've got about 45 seconds left.
Canada-China FIPA2020-06-01Member of Parliament - Manly, Paul (Nanaimo—Ladysmith )Green PartyThat was a trick question, because this anti-democratic agreement states that a Chinese corporation…
We wouldn't be able to have permission to disclose that information if there was, in fact, an investor-state dispute.
Unlike NAFTA, which had a six-month period for renegotiation, the Harper Conservatives have locked us into a 15-year agreement with the FIPA and this anti-democratic agreement.
Will the government re-engage the special committee on Canada-China relations so we can do a thorough investigation of this Conservative sell out to Canadian democracy—
The Acting Chair (Mr. Bruce Stanton): We are out of time, Mr. Manly. We'll go to the minister for a response.
Member of Parliament - Ng, Mary (Markham—Thornhill) I want to thank my honourable colleague for that very good question. Canada will pursue trade always in the interest of Canadians and we are in the process of reviewing our FIPA agreements so that those agreements can indeed provide the right framework for us to do trade, Canadians to do trade, with the interests of Canadians always top of mind.
Thank you, Mr. Chair.
Canada-China FTA2020-06-01Member of Parliament - Fast, Ed (Abbotsford)Conservative Party of CanadaMr. Chair, Canadians have no reason to trust the Prime Minister on anything to do with China, especially when it comes to trade policy. Two and a half years ago, the Prime Minister travelled to China to commence free-trade negotiations and the talks ended up in complete failure and embarrassment. Still the Prime Minister continues
to cozy up to the Chinese regime, refusing to ban Huawei from our 5G network or to speak out convincingly against China's oppression in Hong Kong. Meanwhile, the two Michaels are continuing to languish in Chinese jails. This is the kind of partner the Prime Minister wants to negotiate a trade agreement with.
Can the minister tell us whether at any time during the last six months the Prime Minister or anyone else in his government have had discussions with China about a free trade agreement? A simple yes or no will do.
Member of Parliament - Ng, Mary (Markham—Thornhill)Thank you, Mr. Chair.
Thank you to my honourable colleague for that question.
 As you know, Canada has a complex and multidimensional relationship with China. Canada will continue to engage with China with eyes wide open. Any work that we do on trade and on all matters will always be in the interest of Canadians first.
Canada-China FTA2020-06-01Member of Parliament - Fast, Ed (Abbotsford)Conservative Party of CanadaI think Canadians will see the minister didn't even answer a simple yes or no question, so I'll ask her a simpler yes or no question. Is she or anyone else in her government presently discussing or negotiating a free trade agreement with China, yes or no?Member of Parliament - Ng, Mary (Markham—Thornhill)Mr. Chair, we will always do our work, including any discussions on trade and indeed all our work, with the interests of Canadians and Canadian businesses at the absolute top of our priority. Thank you, Mr. Chair.
Canada-China FTA2020-06-01Member of Parliament - Fast, Ed (Abbotsford)Conservative Party of CanadaAgain, there is no answer, so I'll try again. Will the minister now assure Canadians that she and the Prime Minister's government will not negotiate a free trade agreement with China, yes or no?Member of Parliament - Ng, Mary (Markham—Thornhill)Any work that we do will always be guided in the best interests of Canadians and Canadian businesses.
Canada-China FTA2020-06-01Member of Parliament - Fast, Ed (Abbotsford)Conservative Party of CanadaMr. Chair, I am just flabbergasted. This minister has been asked three times if the government is negotiating a trade agreement. She refuses to answer, so I'll try again.
Will the minister tell us why she thinks negotiating a trade agreement with a hostile country like China is in Canada's best interest?
Member of Parliament - Ng, Mary (Markham—Thornhill)Thank you, Mr. Chair. Thank you to the honourable member for the question.
The answer is no.
Canada-China FTA2020-06-01Member of Parliament - Fast, Ed (Abbotsford)Conservative Party of CanadaMr. Chair, I just want to make sure. Free trade is a good thing when it takes place between like-minded countries that embrace free market principles and
apply the rule of law. China is not such a country. In fact, China repeatedly flouts international trade rules, illegally dumps underpriced goods into Canada, and prevents Canadian canola, beef and pork from entering China. Is has also jailed Canadians without due process.
Will the minister now assure us that our government will not negotiate any free trade agreements with China? Yes orno.
Member of Parliament - Ng, Mary (Markham—Thornhill)Mr. Chair, I thank the honourable member for that question. We are not in discussions with China on a free trade agreement, and as my colleagues including the Prime Minister, and my colleague the foreign minister have said many times in this House and outside of this House our priority continues to be the immediate release of Canadians detained in China. We will always work in the interest of Canadians and Canadian businesses. That is what we will always do.
China - Uighurs2020-05-28Member of Parliament - Sweet, David (Flamborough—Glanbrook)Conservative Party of CanadaThe Uyghur Human Rights Policy Act has passed both Houses of Congress in the United States and is now on the way to the oval office for signature. What is Canada's position on this Muslim minority being jailed and re-educated by the Chinese communist party?Member of Parliament - Ng, Mary (Markham—Thornhill) Mr. Chair, thank you to my honourable colleague for that question. We are deeply concerned by the human rights situation faced by the Uyghurs and other minorities in China. This is an issue our government has raised directly with the Chinese.
 Canada has also repeatedly voiced its concerns at the UN Human Rights Council. We will continue to call on—
The Chair: We'll go back to Mr. Sweet.
China - Hong Kong2020-05-28Member of Parliament - Sweet, David (Flamborough—Glanbrook)Conservative Party of CanadaYesterday the rubber-stamp National Peoples Congress passed the national security bill
undermining Hong Kong's autonomy and strengthening a grip of the Communist Party of China. Will the Prime Minister condemn this law?
Member of Parliament - Ng, Mary (Markham—Thornhill)Thank you, Mr. Chair. Canada with our international partners in the U.S., Australia and the U.K.made a joint statement in which we are expressing our deep concern regarding China's imposition of a new security law for Hong Kong.
China - Hong Kong2020-05-28Member of Parliament - Sweet, David (Flamborough—Glanbrook)Conservative Party of CanadaCanada has admirable history of doing the right thing when the situation is bleak. The Suez Caanal, Cyprus, the fall of apartheid, child and maternal health in Africa, and Afghanistan are examples in my lifetime of how Canada has weighed-in significantly. Why is the government letting down Hong Kongers?Member of Parliament - Ng, Mary (Markham—Thornhill)Mr. Chair, with hundreds of thousands of Canadians living in Hong Kong we have a vested interest in the stability and prosperity and the foundation of which our Hong Kong's relative autonomy and basic freedoms. Canada will always support and promote freedom of speech, freedom of expression, and freedoms of press around the world.
China - Hong Kong2020-05-28Member of Parliament - Sweet, David (Flamborough—Glanbrook)Conservative Party of CanadaI think the 300,000 Canadians who are in Hong Kong want a little bit more than interest from the government. They'd like some action. What exactly is the government going to do to help those 300,000 Canadians who are in a breach between democracy and tyranny now?Member of Parliament - Ng, Mary (Markham—Thornhill)Mr. Chair, Canada has expressed deep concern regarding China's imposition of the security law for Hong Kong. The proposed law would undermine the one country two system framework. We are going to continue to support and promote freedom of speech, freedom of expression, and freedom of press around the world.
China - Hong Kong2020-05-28Member of Parliament - Sweet, David (Flamborough—Glanbrook)Conservative Party of CanadaMr. Chair, deep concern. After being fired at with pepper bullets and tear gas yesterday, 300 students were arrested in Hong Kong while peacefully protesting.
Where is the outrage from this government in regards to what the CCP is doing in Hong Kong?
Member of Parliament - Ng, Mary (Markham—Thornhill)Mr. Chair, as we have said, we are deeply concerned about the arrest of political figures and about the law that has been imposed on Hong Kong. As we have said, Canada will always stand up and support freedom of speech and freedom of expression.
China - Hong Kong2020-05-28Member of Parliament - Sweet, David (Flamborough—Glanbrook)Conservative Party of CanadaMr. Chair, I'm going to give the minister another opportunity to answer the third question that I gave. Yesterday, the rubber-stamped National People's Congress passed the national security bill, undermining Hong Kong's autonomy and strengthening the iron grip of the Chinese Communist Party. Will this government condemn that law today?Member of Parliament - Ng, Mary (Markham—Thornhill)Canada will continue to support Hong Kong's high degree of autonomy and freedoms under the basic law of the one country, two systems framework. Canada and our international partners, with the U.S., Australia and the U.K., have made a joint statement deeply expressing our concern regarding China's imposition of a new security law for
Hong Kong.
China - WeChat2020-05-27Member of Parliament - Falk, Rosemarie (Battlefords—Lloydminster)Conservative Party of CanadaYesterday it was revealed that the Minister of Digital Government has been promoting a fundraising campaign to sue Global News for their story criticising the Chinese Communist Party. Why is the Minister using her authority to support the Communist Party of China, and threatening our media and freedom of expression?Member of Parliament - Murray, Joyce (Vancouver Quadra)Mr. Chair, we value the important work of media right across the country. Attacking the integrity of hard-working journalists is simply not acceptable. Like many members on all sides of the House, we chat as a social media platform used to engage and share information with—
The Chair: Now we'll go back to Ms. Falk.
China2020-05-27Member of Parliament - Falk, Rosemarie (Battlefords—Lloydminster)Conservative Party of CanadaIs the Minister aware of the efforts the United Front carries out on behalf of the Chinese
Communist Party to influence how Canadians view The People's Republic of China?
Member of Parliament - Murray, Joyce (Vancouver Quadra)Mr. Chair, I want to just be clear. The participation in the WeChat group, much like Facebook, is guided by posted—
The Chair: We'll now go back to Ms. Falk.
China - WeChat2020-05-27Member of Parliament - Falk, Rosemarie (Battlefords—Lloydminster)Conservative Party of CanadaIs the Minister an active participant in the efforts by the Communists to muzzle a Canadian journalist and deprive Canadians of the facts about China?Member of Parliament - Murray, Joyce (Vancouver Quadra)Muzzling journalists is never acceptable, and our government is very clear on that. I will say that the individual in question posted something outside of the guidelines of my WeChat group, and is no longer—
The Chair: We'll now go back to Ms. Falk.
China - WeChat2020-05-27Member of Parliament - Falk, Rosemarie (Battlefords—Lloydminster)Conservative Party of CanadaChair, the Liberals can't shrug this off. The Minister admitted to the Breaker that her own political staff manages this WeChat. This is someone who is paid by Canadian taxpayers. Why is the Minister using tax dollars to help China attack Global News and the freedom of expression.Member of Parliament - Murray, Joyce (Vancouver Quadra)I think the member knows very well that the people who post on WeChat are free to post what they choose within certain guidelines. Those guidelines were ignored. That person is no longer part of my WeChat group. The post was completely unacceptable, and I do not share the views of the individual.
China - WeChat2020-05-27Member of Parliament - Falk, Rosemarie (Battlefords—Lloydminster)Conservative Party of CanadaChair, Sam Cooper is an investigative Canadian journalist who has uncovered many different criminal rackets that can be linked back to Beijing. Has the Minister apologized to Sam Cooper for attempting to shut down his work?Member of Parliament - Murray, Joyce (Vancouver Quadra)As we all know, community outreach is a very important part of the work of a member of Parliament. WeChat is one of many social media sites regularly used by members—
The Chair: Back to Ms. Falk.
China - WeChat2020-05-27Member of Parliament - Falk, Ted (Provencher)Conservative Party of CanadaChair, in December of 2008, the Liberals passed Bill C-76. This included provisions to
prevent foreign interference in Canadian society. Does the government believe that Joyce Murray's actions have violated this portion of the act?
Member of Parliament - Blair, Bill (Scarborough Southwest)Mr. Chair, I want to assure the member that we are always vigilant in any foreign interference in our national security, or issues of political interference in our society. It's monitored carefully by the national security establishment, according to the law as it exists in this country, and we will remain vigilant
China - WeChat2020-05-27Member of Parliament - Falk, Rosemarie (Battlefords—Lloydminster)Conservative Party of CanadaChair, in May of 2019, the Liberals launched their digital charter. One of the principles was strong democracy, a commitment to defend freedom of expression. Will the Liberals hold Joyce Murray's WeChat accountable if it has violated this part of the charter?Member of Parliament - Blair, Bill (Scarborough Southwest)Mr. Chair, we are absolutely committed to the rule of law and will always uphold it. I think, as the Minister has made very clear, she was not involved in this process and had no control over the individual who posted that matter.
China - WeChat2020-05-27Member of Parliament - Falk, Rosemarie (Battlefords—Lloydminster)Conservative Party of CanadaChair, unfortunately I don't believe that was a sufficient answer. This is really a yes or no. Will the government hold Joyce Murray's WeChat accountable if it has violated their part of the charter?Member of Parliament - Blair, Bill (Scarborough Southwest)Again, Mr. Chair, I want to assure the member that our government remains committed to the rule of law and we will always work tirelessly to uphold the laws of this country.
China - Canola2020-05-27Member of Parliament - Hoback, Randy (Prince Albert)Conservative Party of CanadaMr. Chair, on the agriculture side, canola farmers would like to know the status of canola going into China. Can she update this House on that status?Member of Parliament - Bibeau, Marie-Claude (Compton—Stanstead)Je vous remercie, monsieur le président. Je vais assurer à mon collègue que nous demeurons en constante collaboration avec nos représentants, nos alliés, nos partenaires commerciaux de la Chine.
China - WeChat2020-05-26Member of Parliament - Scheer, Andrew (Regina—Qu'Appelle)Conservative Party of CanadaMr. Speaker, the media is also reporting today that the Minister of Digital Government has been promoting a fundraising campaign to sue Global News for its story that criticized the Chinese Communist Party. WeChat is a Chinese state-sanctioned social media platform that is monitored by the communist state security and, worse yet, the minister has admitted that her taxpayer-funded political aide is the one who manages her WeChat account and who allowed the fundraising campaign to be promoted. Clearly, this is inappropriate.
What action has the Prime Minister taken in light of these revelations?

Member of Parliament - Trudeau, Justin (Papineau)Mr. Speaker, as a party and as a government, we value the important work that journalists do right across the country. Attacking the integrity of hard-working journalists is absolutely unacceptable. The individual who posted this link on this particular group is no longer a member of this group and is not affiliated with the electoral district association in question.

China - Hong Kong2020-05-26Member of Parliament - Scheer, Andrew (Regina—Qu'Appelle)Conservative Party of CanadaMr. Speaker, this is so typical of the Liberals. When it comes to things like this, they only apologize when they get caught. When we put this in light of their whole approach to China, foreign affairs experts are saying that the government's approach is to speak softly and carry no stick.
Yesterday, I gave the Prime Minister four opportunities to condemn the attack on the freedom of the people of Hong Kong by the Government of China. He refused. We have seen a pattern of appeasement toward the PRC, but this is much worse. By helping an arm of the Chinese government suppress media critical of the PRC here in Canada, the Prime Minister is actually doing its dirty work.
Why are the Prime Minister's cabinet ministers helping the dictators in the PRC?
Member of Parliament - Trudeau, Justin (Papineau)Mr. Speaker, as I said, the individual in question was not associated with the electoral district association or the member of Parliament and minister in question.
We are, of course, deeply concerned about the proposals for introducing legislation related to national security in Hong Kong. With hundreds of thousands of Canadians living in Hong King, we have a vested interest in its stability and prosperity. We continue to support Hong Kong's high degree of autonomy and freedoms under the basic law and the “one country, two systems” framework, which would be undermined by this proposal. We will always support and promote freedom of speech, freedom of expression and freedom of the press around the world.
China - Hong Kong2020-05-26Member of Parliament - Sweet, David (Flamborough—Glanbrook)Conservative Party of CanadaMr. Speaker, yesterday the Prime Minister refused to condemn the odious attacks by China on the free people of Hong Kong. Worse yet, the Liberals voted against recommencing the Canada-China committee to address the threat to Hong Kong's democracy by the CCP. Liberals claim to be defenders of freedom, but they stand by while a communist regime drags lawmakers out of a legislative council, locks up those who fight for democracy and is hell-bent on exerting authoritarian rule over Hongkongers.
Enough is enough. When will the Liberals stand up for human rights and democracy, and against the dictators in China?

Member of Parliament - Garneau, Marc (Notre-Dame-de-Grâce—Westmount)Mr. Speaker, we are deeply concerned about proposals for introducing legislation related to national security in Hong Kong. With hundreds of thousands of Canadians living in Hong Kong, we have a vested interest in its stability and prosperity, the foundations of which are Hong Kong's relative autonomy and basic freedoms.
Canada continues to support Hong Kong's high degree of autonomy and its one country, two systems framework. We continue to encourage all parties to engage in peaceful and meaningful dialogue to address the legitimate concerns expressed by the Hong Kong population.
China - Hong Kong2020-05-26Member of Parliament - Blaney, Steven (Bellechasse—Les Etchemins—Lévis)Conservative Party of CanadaMr. Speaker, if the Liberals are so deeply concerned, why are they opposed to a group of Canadian parliamentarians looking into human rights in Hong Kong at the Special Committee on Canada-China Relations?
Freedom of expression is important, especially during a pandemic. In 2019, the Liberals boasted that they would defend freedom of expression. They are manoeuvring for a seat on the UN Security Council. Parliament can study this issue to defend freedom of expression.
Why are the Liberals not standing up to China to defend Canadians' rights and democracy?
Member of Parliament - Rodriguez, Pablo (Honoré-Mercier)Mr. Speaker, I disagree completely with what my colleague said.
There are currently eight committees that meet on a regular basis. For example, the Standing Committee on Agriculture and Agri-Food met five times and heard from 32 witnesses. In total, there have been 74 committee meetings and we heard from 580 witnesses. Furthermore, 23 ministers have appeared. This was all done during a pandemic, with all the difficulties it has caused. We managed it, we ensured that committees can sit.
China - Hong Kong2020-05-25Member of Parliament - Scheer, Andrew (Regina—Qu'Appelle)Conservative Party of CanadaMr. Speaker, Canada used to have a history of principled leadership on the world stage. The Government of China has launched an unprecedented attack on the rights and freedoms of the people of Hong Kong. Now the government should go beyond statements and act in concert with our allies to show the Government of China that it must abide by its commitments.
Will the Prime Minister unequivocally condemn the actions of the PRC, and will he propose a real plan for supporting the people of Hong Kong and our allies around the world who have already started to be targeted by Chinese retribution?
Member of Parliament - Trudeau, Justin (Papineau)Mr. Speaker, Canada has always been very clear in standing up for human rights around the world, including in regard to the Chinese government. We support the over 300,000 Canadians who live in Hong Kong and support all people of Hong Kong, to continue the one country, two systems rule, which has been in place in Hong Kong and China for a couple of decades now.
We will continue to stand up strongly for human rights on the world stage, working with our allies and holding others to account. We call for a de-escalation of tensions and for the Chinese government to listen to citizens in Hong Kong who have important things to say.
China - Hong Kong2020-05-25Member of Parliament - Scheer, Andrew (Regina—Qu'Appelle)Conservative Party of CanadaMr. Speaker, a concrete way that the Prime Minister can actually support the people of Hong Kong is to unequivocally condemn the actions of the communist regime in Beijing. It is the one violating the one country, two systems principle, and the Prime Minister is refusing to condemn those actions and refusing to propose any kind of plan to support our allies across the world.
When Russia invaded Ukraine, Canada, under a Conservative government, led the world in promoting a series of coordinated economic and political measures that punished and isolated the Putin regime and sent a clear message that violations of international law would not be tolerated.
Will the Prime Minister condemn the actions of the PRC and propose a meaningful plan to support the people of Hong Kong?
Member of Parliament - Trudeau, Justin (Papineau)Mr. Speaker, we have expressed in no uncertain terms our deep concern over the measures proposed by the People's Republic of China in regard to Hong Kong. We stand with the people in Hong Kong who believe that freedom of expression and freedom of assembly continue to be an essential part of their way of life.
We will continue to work with our allies all around the world to stand up for human rights, including in Hong Kong.
China - Hong Kong2020-05-25Member of Parliament - Scheer, Andrew (Regina—Qu'Appelle)Conservative Party of CanadaMr. Speaker, why is it so hard for the Prime Minister to condemn the actions of the communist government in China? The Prime Minister has let Canada get bullied and pushed around on the world stage. Two Canadians are being held illegally. The government of China put blocks on Canadian exports. All the while, the Prime Minister has done nothing.
Now the PRC is violating the one country, two systems policy and violating the rights and freedoms of the people of Hong Kong. What is he so afraid of? Why is it so hard to stand up to the PRC? Why does he continue with the policy of appeasement?
Member of Parliament - Trudeau, Justin (Papineau)Mr. Speaker, my job as Prime Minister is to stand up for Canadians. It is to be there to defend the rights of Canadians and to protect Canadians, both at home and abroad. That is why we have been unequivocal in our defence of the two Michaels arbitrarily detained in China; we have continued to work to resolve that situation.
We will continue to stand up for Canadians' rights, for Canadian interests, including those of agricultural producers and exporters. We will continue to defend Canadian interests everywhere around the world, including with China.
China - Hong Kong2020-05-25Member of Parliament - Scheer, Andrew (Regina—Qu'Appelle)Conservative Party of CanadaMr. Speaker, the problem is that the Prime Minister has actually done nothing to stand up for Canadians.
What did he do after two Canadians were held illegally by the PRC? He still wrote that cheque to the Asian infrastructure bank and still gave that institution Canadian taxpayers' money to help further the advancements of the foreign policy of China.
Here we are today, and he refuses to condemn these actions. These are actions that have been condemned by governments around the world, by public policy institutions. Why is it so hard for him to just call this out for what it is, an abuse of the rights and freedoms of the people of Hong Kong?
Member of Parliament - Trudeau, Justin (Papineau)Mr. Speaker, we put out a very strong statement alongside the governments of the U.K. and Australia with our deep disagreement over the measures proposed by China for Hong Kong. We will continue to defend the rights of people in Hong Kong, particularly the 300,000 Canadians who live there. We continue to defend Canadian interests around the world, including in regard to China.
China - WHO Taiwan2020-04-29Member of Parliament - Chiu, Kenny (Steveston—Richmond East)Conservative Party of CanadaThank you, Mr. Chair.
Taiwan has previously held an observer status in the WHO under the name “Chinese Taipei” but was unjustly removed due to the influence of the CCP, the Chinese Communist Party, following its strong response to COVID-19.
Will this Government of Canada acknowledge Taiwan's invaluable contribution to the global community and support it in obtaining observer status independently again?
Member of Parliament - Freeland, Chrystia (University—Rosedale)Mr. Chair, yes, indeed, Canada believes that Taiwan's role as an observer in the WHO assembly meetings is in the interest of the international health community and is important to the global fight against pandemic and disease. We have experience working with Taiwan as an economy in APEC, where Canada participates as well.
China - WHO Taiwan2020-04-29Member of Parliament - Chiu, Kenny (Steveston—Richmond East)Conservative Party of CanadaThank you, Mr. Chair.
Taiwan has previously held an observer status in the WHO under the name “Chinese Taipei” but was unjustly removed due to the influence of the CCP, the Chinese Communist Party, following its strong response to COVID-19.
Will this Government of Canada acknowledge Taiwan's invaluable contribution to the global community and support it in obtaining observer status independently again?
Member of Parliament - Freeland, Chrystia (University—Rosedale)Mr. Chair, yes, indeed, Canada believes that Taiwan's role as an observer in the WHO assembly meetings is in the interest of the international health community and is important to the global fight against pandemic and disease. We have experience working with Taiwan as an economy in APEC, where Canada participates as well.
China - Uighurs2020-03-09Member of Parliament - Genuis, Garnett (Sherwood Park—Fort Saskatchewan)Conservative Party of CanadaMr. Speaker, while the Chinese ambassador to Canada continues to absurdly label Uighur persecution as fake news, the U.S. Holocaust Memorial Museum has now officially labelled the Chinese government's persecution of Uighurs as crimes against humanity. This designation opens the door for an international legal response.
Aside from talking about it and expressing concern, is the government contemplating a concrete legal response to this atrocity, supporting international legal action, recognizing these as crimes against humanity or imposing Magnitsky sanctions against those responsible?
Member of Parliament - Champagne, François-Philippe (Saint-Maurice—Champlain)Mr. Speaker, we are deeply concerned by the human rights situation faced by the Uighur and other minorities in China.
Let me be very clear. Our government has raised this issue directly with the Chinese. Canada has also repeatedly voiced its concern at the United Nations Human Rights Council. We continue to call on the Chinese government to ensure that the human rights of its people, including freedom of religion, are fully respected.
Canadian Ambassador to China2020-02-07Member of Parliament - Albas, Dan (Central Okanagan—Similkameen—Nicola)Conservative Party of CanadaMadam Speaker, when asked about Canada's policy in the South China Sea, our ambassador to China drew a blank. When asked about a Canadian in prison in China for 15 years, he did not seem to know the basic details. He had to be corrected by the member for Sherwood Park—Fort Saskatchewan.
First impressions matter, and Canadians' first impression of the Liberal-appointed ambassador was weak at best. How many times will we have to step in and cover for the ambassador's mistakes?
Member of Parliament - Champagne, François-Philippe (Saint-Maurice—Champlain)Madam Speaker, I am so proud to see you in the chair.
I would like to say to my hon. colleague that he will not have to do that. We are very proud of Ambassador Barton's work. He brings a wealth of experience, and he is the type of Canadian we like to attract into the public service.
He is representing Canada, bringing his wealth of experience and defending Canadian interests in China at a time when we need someone strong who understands the deep nature of the relationship we have with China. We are very proud of his work and will support him every step of the way.
Canadian Ambassador to China2020-02-07Member of Parliament - Albas, Dan (Central Okanagan—Similkameen—Nicola)Conservative Party of CanadaMadam Speaker, that member there had to correct the ambassador. Speaking of his deep knowledge, this is not just an ambassador who has expressed a lack of awareness, but one who begs serious questions. He ran a company that worked with Chinese state-owned enterprises and held a retreat next door to a Uighur Muslim concentration camp. He has publicly stated, and I quote, that he “drank the Kool-Aid” on China.
How can Canadians believe that someone with such strong ties to China would be looking out for our country's national interests?
Member of Parliament - Champagne, François-Philippe (Saint-Maurice—Champlain)Madam Speaker, I have the utmost respect for my hon. colleague. At a time where we have a health emergency, this House should really be behind our public service and behind Ambassador Barton. We are trying to make sure we provide all the consular services to our Canadians in China who need our assistance.
We will be behind Ambassador Barton every step of the way. I would urge this House to be behind our public service at a time where we need everyone to look in the same direction.
Canadian Ambassador to China2020-02-06Member of Parliament - Genuis, Garnett (Sherwood Park—Fort Saskatchewan)Conservative Party of CanadaMr. Speaker, yesterday during question period, the Prime Minister called Ambassador Dominic Barton a deep expert in how we would move forward on improving the situation of Canadians in China. However, when asked about the detention of Huseyin Celil, Barton claimed that Celil was not a Canadian citizen. Celil's citizenship is not acknowledged by China because he happens to be a dual national, but a Canadian is a Canadian.
Does the Prime Minister still have confidence in his ambassador and will he set the ambassador straight about Mr. Celil's citizenship?
Member of Parliament - Champagne, François-Philippe (Saint-Maurice—Champlain)Mr. Speaker, Canadians would agree that a Canadian is a Canadian. I am happy that on this side of the House we understand that.
We are deeply concerned about Mr. Celil and we will continue to raise his case at every opportunity at senior levels. We will continue to call upon the Chinese government to give Canadian officials consular access in order to determine his well-being and offer him assistance, like we will do for every Canadian.
Canadian Ambassador to China2020-02-06Member of Parliament - Genuis, Garnett (Sherwood Park—Fort Saskatchewan)Conservative Party of CanadaMr. Speaker, the question was not about buzzwords; it was about citizenship. The ambassador told the committee yesterday that this Canadian citizen, who has been in prison for 15 years and has never met his youngest son, was not a Canadian citizen.
Could the minister stand in his place, at the very least, and set the ambassador straight; tell us that he believes Mr. Celil to be a citizen; and that he will call the ambassador and tell him to recognize, publicly, the Canadian citizenship of this long-detained Canadian?
Mr. Speaker, I think everyone in the House recognizes that Mr. Celil is a Canadian. We will always stand up for Canadians. We recognize he is a Canadian. We will provide consular assistance. We will continue to assist him, like we would do for every Canadian around the world.
Canadian Ambassador to China2020-02-05Member of Parliament - Alleslev, Leona (Aurora—Oak Ridges—Richmond Hill)Conservative Party of CanadaMr. Speaker, the Prime Minister's failures with respect to our relationship with China have been numerous. Later today, the Prime Minister's point man on Canada-China relations will appear at the Canada-China parliamentary committee. Canadians are hoping that he will shed some light on the situation on the ground, what progress has been made since he arrived and how the government is addressing the many problems with this relationship.
Can the Prime Minister confirm whether any political staff have been involved in preparing Ambassador Barton for his committee appearance this evening?
Member of Parliament - Trudeau, Justin (Papineau)Mr. Speaker, Ambassador Dominic Barton is an exceptional individual with great depth of understanding of the situation in China over many, many years. He has also been an extremely active member, working with me and with the Government of Canada in terms of moving forward constructively on the sometimes difficult relationship with China right now, particularly around the return of the two Michaels who have been unfairly detained.
We have full confidence in Ambassador Barton's ability to do this job and his ability to present himself to committee very well tonight.
China - Belt and Road2020-02-05Member of Parliament - Rayes, Alain (Richmond—Arthabaska)Conservative Party of CanadaMr. Speaker, if the Conservatives were in power, these people would already be back in Canada.
The Chinese are trying to expand their influence throughout the world with their belt and road initiative. According to many experts, this initiative is another way for China to aggressively expand its global influence and to trap developing countries by not only making them financially dependent but also politically dependent on China.
Can the Prime Minister clarify the role of the Canadian government in promoting Canadian businesses in the belt and road initiative?
Member of Parliament - Trudeau, Justin (Papineau)Mr. Speaker, as part of the Asian Infrastructure Investment Bank, Canada joins many countries in promoting inclusive global economic growth. Trade tensions are on the rise in Canada and the Conservative leader is suggesting that we close our doors to international co-operation. This bank supports clean and green investments in infrastructure across Asia and in some of the poorest countries in the world.
It is misleading of them to suggest that it would be in Canada's advantage to withhold funds earmarked for landslide mitigation in Sri Lanka, flood management in the Philippines, and the modernization of Indonesia's immigration system.
China - Extradition Treaty2020-02-05Member of Parliament - Genuis, Garnett (Sherwood Park—Fort Saskatchewan)Conservative Party of CanadaMr. Speaker, the Prime Minister should know that the AIIB is part of a colonial project to expand Chinese control and influence throughout Asia, and many people are concerned about it.
Four years ago, the Prime Minister announced the beginnings of extradition discussions with China. Imagine Canada extraditing people to China. Yesterday, at the Canada-China committee, it was confirmed by officials that these conversations have actually taken place informally.
I would like the Prime Minister to clarify for the House whether he will close the door on an extradition treaty with China, or does he intend to leave that door open?
Member of Parliament - Trudeau, Justin (Papineau)Mr. Speaker, over the course of many years, we have had many different discussions on many different topics. However, our values, our criteria and our expectations on extradition treaties are very clear. China would not qualify now, or any time soon, for an extradition treaty with Canada.
Canadian Ambassador to China2020-02-05Member of Parliament - Genuis, Garnett (Sherwood Park—Fort Saskatchewan)Conservative Party of CanadaMr. Speaker, I hope that marks a real change of heart. However, I am very concerned about the government's commitment to our values.
Ambassador Dominic Barton led a corporate retreat in Kashgar, four miles from a Uighur concentration camp. While leading McKinsey, he also worked to improve the image of pro-Kremlin Ukrainian President Viktor Yanukovych, and he prepared a report for the Saudi government that it used to crack down on critics.
Given Dominic Barton's record at McKinsey, does the Prime Minister really have confidence in his commitment to defending Canadian values on the world stage?
Member of Parliament - Trudeau, Justin (Papineau)Mr. Speaker, I have tremendous confidence in Mr. Barton. He is an excellent public servant, an excellent ambassador to Canada and he, as the members opposite will see tonight, is a deep expert in how we are going to move forward on improving the situation for Canadians in China right now.
China - Belt and Road2020-02-03Member of Parliament - Warkentin, Chris (Grande Prairie—Mackenzie)Conservative Party of CanadaMr. Speaker, last week trade officials confirmed at committee that the government had a policy of promoting the active involvement of Canadian companies in China's belt and road initiative. This expansionist foreign policy initiative is infamous for ensnaring developing countries into a debt trap, leaving them forever indebted to Beijing.
Could the minister confirm that it is in fact the Liberals' policy to promote the active participation of Canadian businesses in China's belt and road initiative?
Member of Parliament - Bendayan, Rachel (Outremont)Mr. Speaker, Canada has a deep and long-standing relationship with China based on mutual economic prosperity, strengthened by our people-to-people ties. These ties are rooted in tradition, history and mutual respect.
Since the arrests of Michael Kovrig and Michael Spavor, our government has made it our absolute priority to secure their immediate release. We remain focused on that goal.
Our trade policy will always be motivated by what is in the interests of Canadians.
China - WHO Taiwan2020-01-29Member of Parliament - Cooper, Michael (St. Albert—Edmonton)Conservative Party of CanadaMr. Speaker, this is a question about Taiwan. The health and safety of Canadians depends on an effective, internationally coordinated response to the coronavirus. Taiwan has identified five such cases.
Does the government support the inclusion of Taiwan in international discussions about the virus, yes or no?
Member of Parliament - Trudeau, Justin (Papineau)Mr. Speaker, yes. As we did during the time of the SARS virus, we support Taiwan's meaningful participation in international multilateral forums, especially when its presence provides important contributions to the global public good.
We believe that Taiwan's role as an observer in World Health Assembly meetings is in the best interest of the international health community and Taiwan is also an important partner in the fight—
Mr. Speaker, we welcome participation from the entire international community to promote global health. That is why we have long taken this position.
China - WHO Taiwan2020-01-28Member of Parliament - Scheer, Andrew (Regina—Qu'Appelle)Conservative Party of CanadaMr. Speaker, the crisis created by the coronavirus has made it clearer than ever that co-operation among all governments around the globe is important to ensuring public health.
Will the Prime Minister support observer status in the World Health Organization for Taiwan?
Member of Parliament - Trudeau, Justin (Papineau)Mr. Speaker, we continue to work with the WHO. We continue to work with allied countries around the world to ensure that we are dealing with this health challenge. I can reassure Canadians that the risks to Canadians are low, and in regard to Canadians in China, we are engaged in consular support for them. We will continue to make sure that Canadians remain safe amid these concerns about public health.
China - WHO Taiwan2020-01-28Member of Parliament - Scheer, Andrew (Regina—Qu'Appelle)Conservative Party of CanadaMr. Speaker, that was a very simple question. There has been a request made by the government in Taiwan to be an observer at the WHO, especially during this time. This is a decision that the Prime Minister can make, whether or not to support Taiwan's request.
It is a yes-or-no question. Will the Prime Minister support observer status for Taiwan at the WHO?
Member of Parliament - Trudeau, Justin (Papineau)Mr. Speaker, we are a country that is always engaged in supporting multilateralism, whether supporting the United Nations, whether supporting the WHO or supporting collaboration between countries around the world. We will continue to work together on addressing this public health emergency.
We recognize that the Conservatives like to play politics with international affairs. We are focused on keeping Canadians safe.
China - AIIB2019-12-11Member of Parliament - Scheer, Andrew (Regina—Qu'Appelle)Conservative Party of CanadaMr. Speaker, yesterday the House voted to take the crisis between Canada and the Government of China seriously by establishing a special committee to look at all aspects of the government's handling of that relationship. After China's unlawful imprisonment of two Canadians, after its putting blocks on our exports of canola and other products, the Prime Minister still has not stood up for Canadians.
Will the Prime Minister at least take the very practical step of withdrawing Canada's funding for the Asian Infrastructure Investment Bank?
Member of Parliament - Trudeau, Justin (Papineau)Mr. Speaker, over the past year, we have been working at all levels to ensure the safety of the Canadians being detained, and indeed continue to advocate for their release as we stand up for our canola farmers, as we protect our beef and pork exporters and as we continue to engage with this important trading partner, while at the same time standing up for human rights every step of the way. We recognize there is an opportunity to collaborate further on the special committee on China. We just certainly hope the opposition parties will be careful not to play politics and endanger the lives of those Canadians with it.​
China - AIIB2019-12-11Member of Parliament - Scheer, Andrew (Regina—Qu'Appelle)Conservative Party of CanadaMr. Speaker, yesterday the House voted to take the crisis between Canada and the Government of China seriously by establishing a special committee to look at all aspects of the government's handling of that relationship. After China's unlawful imprisonment of two Canadians, after its putting blocks on our exports of canola and other products, the Prime Minister still has not stood up for Canadians.
Will the Prime Minister at least take the very practical step of withdrawing Canada's funding for the Asian Infrastructure Investment Bank?
Member of Parliament - Trudeau, Justin (Papineau)Mr. Speaker, over the past year, we have been working at all levels to ensure the safety of the Canadians being detained, and indeed continue to advocate for their release as we stand up for our canola farmers, as we protect our beef and pork exporters and as we continue to engage with this important trading partner, while at the same time standing up for human rights every step of the way.
We recognize there is an opportunity to collaborate further on the special committee on China. We just certainly hope the opposition parties will be careful not to play politics and endanger the lives of those Canadians with it.
China - Consular Cases2019-12-10Member of Parliament - Scheer, Andrew (Regina—Qu'Appelle)Conservative Party of CanadaMr. Speaker, today is the one-year anniversary of the arbitrary detention of Michael Spavor and Michael Kovrig by the Chinese government. These men have endured torturous conditions and will now be facing a second Christmas away from home. I know I speak on behalf of all members of Parliament when I send along our best wishes and sympathies to the two Canadians being detained and their families.
Can the Prime Minister update the House as to the efforts that are being made to secure the release of these two Canadians?
Member of Parliament - Gould, Karina (Burlington)Mr. Speaker, as the Leader of the Opposition mentioned, indeed today unfortunately marks one year since Michael Kovrig and Michael Spavor were arbitrarily detained in China. They are and will remain our absolute priority. We will continue to work tirelessly to secure their immediate release and to stand up for them as a government and as Canadians. We are grateful to the many countries around the world that have expressed support for Mr. Kovrig and Mr. Spavor.
China - Consular Cases2019-12-10Member of Parliament - Rayes, Alain (Richmond—Arthabaska)Conservative Party of CanadaMr. Speaker, it is obvious that this government is misreading the Canada-China relationship.
The Prime Minister has no intention of defending human rights in China, protecting Canadians against security threats or working on guaranteed access to markets for Canadian farmers.
In 2013, the Prime Minister said that he admired the Chinese dictatorship. Does he still?
Member of Parliament - Gould, Karina (Burlington)Mr. Speaker, our absolute priority is the well-being and safety of the Canadians detained in China.
The best interests of Canadians are at the heart of all of our decisions. Canadians need a united front defending their interests, not petty politics. We have assembled an international coalition in support of Canada's position, and we thank our many allies who have spoken on our behalf.
China - Agricultural Exports2019-12-10Member of Parliament - Scheer, Andrew (Regina—Qu'Appelle)Conservative Party of CanadaMr. Speaker, when it comes to standing up to the Government of China, on many issues the Liberal government's reaction is costing Canadians. In fact, when it comes to protecting our canola exporters, the Liberal government dragged its feet on raising the Chinese blocking of our exports to the World Trade Organization, and as a result, the industry lost billions. The Liberals waited over six months just to file that complaint.
Why did the government wait so long to take any action on behalf of Canada's agricultural sector?
Member of Parliament - Bibeau, Marie-Claude (Compton—Stanstead)Mr. Speaker, I can tell you that our government has always stood shoulder to shoulder with our farmers. We take this issue very seriously. We have always worked very closely with the industry and take its advice into consideration. We have started the discussion at the WTO, and there have been technical discussions between the CFIA and Chinese officials. Ambassador Barton is working hard in China, and we work as well to diversify our markets.
China - Agricultural Exports2019-12-10Member of Parliament - Hoback, Randy (Prince Albert)Conservative Party of CanadaMr. Speaker, nearly half of Canada's canola seed exports, worth some $2.5 billion, have been lost due to Chinese non-tariff trade barriers. Canadian farmers want to know what the Liberal government's plan B is, because plan A is obviously not working for them.
Can the minister answer what the Liberal government is doing to regain the market access that it lost in China for our canola farmers?
Member of Parliament - Bibeau, Marie-Claude (Compton—Stanstead)Mr. Speaker, our government will keep standing with our farmers and ranchers. This is very important to us. We have been working with them, with the industry and with the provinces to find the best solutions. We have started the conversation at the WTO, CFIA is having discussions with Chinese officials, Ambassador Barton is working hard, and obviously we are working on diversifying our markets as well.
China - Agricultural Exports2019-12-10Member of Parliament - Berthold, Luc (Mégantic—L'Érable)Conservative Party of CanadaMr. Speaker, over the past four years, Canadians have lost confidence in the Prime Minister and the government in matters of foreign policy. Canola producers have paid too high a price because of the government’s inability to act. He denied the crisis with China for months. It took an election for him to finally file a complaint with the WTO. As for Canadian canola, it is still banned in China.
Will the Minister of Agriculture and Agri-Food support the opposition motion and finally stand up for canola producers?
Member of Parliament - Bibeau, Marie-Claude (Compton—Stanstead)Mr. Speaker, since the very beginning of this affair, we have been standing up and working very closely with producers, their industry representatives and the provinces most affected. The Canadian Food Inspection Agency is having technical and scientific discussions with their Chinese counterparts. We have also begun discussions and consultations with the World Trade Organization.
Ambassador Barton has been appointed, and he is doing a very good job on the ground.
Obviously, we are working on market diversification.
China - Agricultural Exports2019-12-10Member of Parliament - Berthold, Luc (Mégantic—L'Érable)Conservative Party of CanadaMr. Speaker, the upshot is that canola is still banned in China. China is blocking imports of Canadian canola. China is suppressing pro-democracy protests in Hong Kong.
What does the new Minister of Foreign Affairs think about that?
According to him, in a world of uncertainty, unpredictability, of questioning about the rules that have been established to govern our trading relationship, Canada and China stand out as beacons of stability, predictability, a rule-based system, a very inclusive society.
Really?
When will the Prime Minister take off his rose-coloured glasses and live up to Canadian values, which are based on rights and freedoms?
Member of Parliament - Gould, Karina (Burlington)Mr. Speaker, Canada always stands up for Canadian values and principles, whether it is about human rights, democracy or international rules. We are always front and centre, and we are always able to state our views and talk with our counterparts around the world, including in China.
The important thing right now is for all Canadians to come together and form a united front in order to protect our economy, our major industries and, of course, our Canadian values and rights.
China - AIIB2019-12-10Member of Parliament - Scheer, Andrew (Regina—Qu'Appelle)Conservative Party of CanadaThe trouble is, Mr. Speaker, that just is not the case. The Government of China is illegally detaining two Canadian citizens. It has blocked billions of dollars in agriculture exports. It is now starting to take aggressive actions in the Arctic, calling for a “polar silk road”. Now, not only is the government not standing up for Canada: it is actually borrowing hundreds of millions of dollars from taxpayers to send to the Asian Infrastructure Investment Bank.
Why is the government subsidizing the Government of China during this diplomatic crisis?
Member of Parliament - Morneau, Bill (Toronto Centre)Mr. Speaker, we have been pleased to be part of the Asian Infrastructure Investment Bank. We know that it is important to develop the entire region. It is an important way for Canadian organizations to get opportunities in that part of the country. Obviously, over the long term, what we want is a global economy that works, which not only helps us internationally but also helps us back at home with our own economy.
China - Arctic Sovereignty2019-12-10Member of Parliament - Rayes, Alain (Richmond—Arthabaska)Conservative Party of CanadaMr. Speaker, we all know that, because of his antics, the Prime Minister is not taken very seriously on the international scene.
Is he effectively managing foreign threats here, in Canada? It is a valid question. The Chinese government has clearly indicated that it wants to become established in the Arctic and gain influence over this territory.
Does the Prime Minister recognize this threat, yes or no?
Member of Parliament - Gould, Karina (Burlington)Mr. Speaker, Canada will always defend its sovereignty.
That has nothing to do with our government. It is clear that we will always defend Canada's rights and territory.
China - China Committee2019-12-10Member of Parliament - O'Toole, Erin (Durham)Conservative Party of CanadaMr. Speaker, today the House is debating the most challenging foreign policy relationship Canada has at present: China. The government has made serious missteps on security and trade issues with the Chinese government and is avoiding tough decisions when it comes to Huawei and other issues.
Will the Prime Minister agree to a specialized all-party committee to review all aspects of the Canada-China relationship?
Member of Parliament - Gould, Karina (Burlington)Mr. Speaker, I thank my hon. colleague for raising a very important issue in this House today, which I think is resulting in some really important debate on all sides.
We all agree that the Canada-China relationship is incredibly important, and we are exploring all of those issues when it comes to human rights, when it comes to democracy, when it comes to trade and when it comes to our security. Of course, the House and Parliament have many standing committees that deal with all of these issues, and we look forward to seeing how the committees decide to manage their own business.
China - China Committee2019-12-10Member of Parliament - Alleslev, Leona (Aurora—Oak Ridges—Richmond Hill)Conservative Party of CanadaMr. Speaker, the Prime Minister has failed to manage our relationship with the Government of China, from control of Canadian resource technology and service companies by Chinese state-owned entities to cyber-attacks on our communications networks, to security concerns in our Arctic, to international drug trafficking of deadly substances like fentanyl. There are many areas of critical importance that require a thorough review and balanced approach.
When will the Prime Minister support our motion to appoint a special committee to review the Canada-China relationship?
Member of Parliament - Gould, Karina (Burlington)Mr. Speaker, these are issues that all Canadians are concerned about, including on this side of the House. Of course, as the Government of Canada, it is something that we are working very diligently on.
As I mentioned, when it comes to trade, agriculture, foreign affairs and security, there are committees of the House that deal with these issues already. Of course, we look forward to seeing how these committees decide to manage their business and should they be interested in learning more about the Canada-China relationship, we will be looking forward to working with them.
China - Hong Kong2019-12-10Member of Parliament - Chong, Michael (Wellington—Halton Hills)Conservative Party of CanadaMr. Speaker, 75 years ago, soldiers from Winnipeg and Quebec City fought to defend the people of Hong Kong, including my father. Hundreds of Canadian soldiers were killed in the Battle of Hong Kong. Some 300,000 Canadians live in Hong Kong today, and millions of people are marching in the streets for their freedom.
Will the government take a firmer, stronger and clearer position on Hong Kong?
Member of Parliament - Gould, Karina (Burlington)Mr. Speaker, as my colleague pointed out, one position that is shared by all Canadians is our support for the people of Hong Kong. I thank my hon. colleague for sharing his personal connection to this issue.
We will always stand up for the rights of the people of Hong Kong. The Prime Minister and my colleague, the Minister of Foreign Affairs, have spoken with their counterparts and partners around the world to ensure that the human rights, democratic rights and basic rights of the people of Hong Kong are respected.
China - Visas to Canada2019-12-10Member of Parliament - Kent, Peter (Thornhill)Conservative Party of CanadaMr. Speaker, Dai Qing is a Chinese citizen, once China's most famous investigative journalist, a former political prisoner, and widely recognized for her writing and lectures at universities across North America. She was invited to Canada again this fall to discuss her new book. However, when she applied for a routine visa, she was surprised that her application was subject to review, and her passport, two months later, is still being held by the Canadian embassy.
Can the minister assure the House that Dai Qing's visa application is not being blocked for political reasons?
Member of Parliament - Mendicino, Marco (Eglinton—Lawrence)Mr. Speaker, as this is my first occasion in the 43rd Parliament to rise in the House, I want to thank the good people of Eglinton—Lawrence for re-electing me as their member of Parliament.
I want to assure my hon. colleague that these visa applications are processed by highly trained professional officials within my department. We take these applications very seriously. Of course, they are not motivated, nor would they ever be, for political purposes.
China - Fentanyl2019-12-10Member of Parliament - Shin, Nelly (Port Moody—Coquitlam)Conservative Party of CanadaMr. Speaker, fentanyl overdoses are the cause of more and more deaths in Canada and are especially prevalent in British Columbia. Parents and residents in my riding are concerned about the impact of this crisis on our region and the safety of our children and youth.
A significant amount of this drug is illegally imported from China. The Liberals have had four years to act. When will the Liberals take action to prevent opioids from entering our country?
Member of Parliament - Blair, Bill (Scarborough Southwest)Mr. Speaker, our government recognizes the tragedies that have taken place across Canada as a result of synthetic drugs, the opioid crisis and methamphetamines in so many of our communities. That is why we have taken very significant steps to interdict the supply of these drugs and the precursor chemicals used in their manufacture.
We have ensured that our law enforcement agencies and border security officials have additional resources to deal with this crisis. We are working very collaboratively with our international partners to keep these drugs and the chemicals used in their manufacture out of our country.
China - Fentanyl2019-12-10Member of Parliament - Gladu, Marilyn (Sarnia—Lambton)Conservative Party of CanadaMr. Speaker, the minister was part of the problem in the 42nd Parliament with the inaction on this file. Due to the Liberals' inaction, 12,000 Canadians have died from the opioid crisis. Fentanyl continues to pour into our country from China. While places like the U.S. have put controls in place, Canada is nowhere on this file.
What is the government going to do to stop the illicit importation of fentanyl into Canada?
Member of Parliament - Hajdu, Patty (Thunder Bay—Superior North)Mr. Speaker, my colleague has illustrated the strong action we have taken on the importation side. It is really great to hear the member opposite wake up to the crisis that opioid overdoses have presented to our country for well over 10 years.
I come from the world of drug policy and we on this side know that we need to treat this situation as a health crisis. That is what we have been doing. Over the last four years, we have been saving lives so people can access recovery. Every life matters.
China - Consular Cases2019-12-09Member of Parliament - O'Toole, Erin (Durham)Conservative Party of CanadaMr. Speaker, Canadians are mindful that this could be the second Christmas that Canadian citizens Michael Spavor and Michael Kovrig spend in a Chinese prison. All Canadians stand in solidarity with their families and friends and we must send a signal that such conduct by the Chinese is unacceptable.
What steps will the Prime Minister take to show that diplomatic hostage-taking is unacceptable for a world power?
Member of Parliament - Trudeau, Justin (Papineau)Mr. Speaker, our heart goes out to the two Canadians detained in China unjustly. Michael Kovrig and Michael Spavor have spent a long time in detention in China. We think of their families, we think of their communities. We think of their loved ones, but we also stay focused on them, as we have over the past year.
We have continued to engage directly, including myself directly with President Xi, to highlight how important it is to bring these Canadians home. We will continue to work very hard, as I know all Canadians will, to send that clear message that those Canadians must be returned home.
China - Hong Kong2019-12-09Member of Parliament - O'Toole, Erin (Durham)Conservative Party of CanadaMr. Speaker, 75 years ago this week, thousands of Canadians were fighting to defend Hong Kong in the Battle of Hong Kong during the Second World War. In the last few months, millions of Hong Kongers have taken to the streets to protest the erosion of their rights under the one country, two systems agreement with mainland China. Canadians value liberty. We have 300,000 Canadian citizens in Hong Kong and we have spilled blood there as a nation. Will the Prime Minister stand in this House today to show his support for the civil liberties of Hong Kongers?Member of Parliament - Trudeau, Justin (Papineau)Mr. Speaker, we have been very clear over the past months in our support for the people of Hong Kong in defence of their human rights. We have been long-standing supporters of the one country, two systems principle and the rule of law. We have been calling consistently for a de-escalation of violence and hostilities and have asked the authorities to engage in a respectful and non-violent manner with the citizens of Hong Kong, including those 300,000 Canadians for whom we are very concerned.
China - Canola Exports2019-12-09Member of Parliament - Patzer, Jeremy (Cypress Hills—Grasslands)Conservative Party of CanadaMr. Speaker, canola farmers in my riding and across the country have had a difficult year under the Liberals. They are in a desperate position because of lost access to markets in China, a railway strike and the higher cost of drying their oilseeds and grain because of the carbon tax. There are also three million acres of canola still buried by snow, yet last week's throne speech made no mention whatsoever of addressing this crisis.
Why do the Liberals not have a plan to help these struggling canola farmers?
Member of Parliament - Bibeau, Marie-Claude (Compton—Stanstead)Mr. Speaker, our government always stood shoulder to shoulder with our farmers and ranchers from the very beginning. We have reopened the market in China for beef and pork and we are working very hard to reopen the market for canola.
We are also making improvements to the business risk management programs because we know that the risks that our farmers are facing are different regarding commercial disruption as well, and we are working on that.
China - Huawei2019-12-09Member of Parliament - Motz, Glen (Medicine Hat—Cardston—Warner)Conservative Party of CanadaMr. Speaker, Huawei and other Chinese telecommunications firms have been deemed a risk by Canadian national security experts. China is known to have hacked Canadian companies and governments and spread disinformation in our own country. China is not acting like a friend or a partner. We know that Huawei is a real threat that could compromise our Internet communications.
When will the Liberal government finally make the decision to ban Huawei?
Member of Parliament - Blair, Bill (Scarborough Southwest)Mr. Speaker, while it is entirely inappropriate to speak of a particular company, a very thorough examination of the associated security and economic considerations in the 5G decision is well under way. We want to make sure that Canadians have access to the most beneficial 5G technology and, at the same time, we will make sure that Canadians are safe and that their systems will not be compromised.
China - Huawei2019-12-09Member of Parliament - Blaney, Steven (Bellechasse—Les Etchemins—Lévis)Conservative Party of CanadaMr. Speaker, on the contrary, it is entirely appropriate to speak of Huawei. Our four Five Eyes allies banned the Chinese giant from the roll-out because they perceive Huawei as a threat to national security and privacy.
Australia, New Zealand, the United Kingdom and the United States banned Huawei. The Americans even warned us that Huawei could be a problem and would be required to give personal information to the Chinese government.
When will the Liberals ban Huawei? Would they rather see Canadians' personal information in the hands of the Chinese?
Member of Parliament - Blair, Bill (Scarborough Southwest)Mr. Speaker, our government takes the security of Canada's telecommunication networks very seriously. Since 2013, the Canadian security review program has worked to mitigate the cybersecurity risks that stem from designated equipment and services, including the companies mentioned.
We will continue to work with telecommunication service providers and the vendors through this collaborative program to mitigate the security concerns. We will examine all security, economic and global considerations when making this determination.
China - Huawei2019-12-09Member of Parliament - Jansen, Tamara (Cloverdale—Langley City)Conservative Party of CanadaMr. Speaker, I would like to thank the voters of Cloverdale—Langley City for the honour of serving them in the House as their member of Parliament.
The recently defeated former minister of public safety, Ralph Goodale, had promised a decision on whether to ban Huawei before the recent election. Then he flip-flopped and said it would come immediately after. Here we are: Canada's allies have found serious security concerns about Huawei.
Will the Liberals do the right thing to protect Canadians from Chinese espionage and immediately ban Huawei from Canada's 5G network?
Member of Parliament - Blair, Bill (Scarborough Southwest)Mr. Speaker, I want to assure the member opposite and every member of the House that our national security agencies work tirelessly to identify all security threats and to protect Canadian interests. Our government respects scientific integrity, but we will continue to listen carefully to the advice of our public security officials as we make this important decision for Canadians.
China - Consular Cases2019-12-06Member of Parliament - O'Toole, Erin (Durham)Conservative Party of CanadaMr. Speaker, my question is through you to the Prime Minister, and I would appreciate him answering on behalf of his government.
Next week we mark one year since Canadian citizens Michael Kovrig and Michael Spavor were imprisoned by the Chinese state in an act of retaliation against a lawful arrest of a Chinese citizen: 12 months, two ministers, two ambassadors, zero progress.
What is the Prime Minister's plan to get our citizens home?
Member of Parliament - Champagne, François-Philippe (Saint-Maurice—Champlain)Mr. Speaker, our absolute priority is the well-being and safety of the Canadians who are detained in China. The Prime Minister raised these cases with President Xi and President Trump at the G20, and more recent at the NATO summit. On November 23, my third day as the foreign minister of Canada, I raised these cases directly with my Chinese counterpart. We have rallied an unprecedented number of partners around the world in support of Canada's position and we will continue to raise these cases at every opportunity. We will always defend Canadians around the world.​
China - Consular Cases2019-12-06Member of Parliament - Paul-Hus, Pierre (Charlesbourg—Haute-Saint-Charles)Conservative Party of CanadaMr. Speaker, there is something else that the Minister of Foreign Affairs talked about during his trip to China. He told a Chinese media outlet that, and I quote, “In a world of uncertainty...China [stands] out as [a] beacon of stability, predictability, a rule-based system, a very inclusive society.”
We know that two Canadians are currently being detained by the communist regime in China. The Chinese ambassador even dared to suggest that our parliamentary work could constitute a violation of Chinese internal affairs.
Could the minister tell us whether the Chinese communist regime is still a source of inspiration for him?
Member of Parliament - Champagne, François-Philippe (Saint-Maurice—Champlain)Mr. Speaker, I thank my colleague for his question. Canadians know that Canada is the one country on the world stage that stands for stability and predictability, that values the rule of law and that embodies an inclusive society. That is what people around the world recognize.    If my colleague misunderstood comments that I made in an interview many years ago, I want to remind him today that all Canadians know the answer to that question. Canada is an inspiration in the international arena.​
China - Agricultural Exports2019-12-06Member of Parliament - Barlow, John (Foothills)Conservative Party of CanadaMr. Speaker, agriculture was not even mentioned in the throne speech but why should we be surprised? The Prime Minister is responsible for Canadian farmers losing their most important canola market.
Liberal failures are crippling Canadian farm families and it is only getting worse. Three million acres of canola are buried under snow, and because of the Liberal carbon tax the cost of drying grain is skyrocketing.
When is the Prime Minister going to stand with farmers, stand up to China and regain market access for our canola?
Member of Parliament - Bibeau, Marie-Claude (Compton—Stanstead)As we promised, Mr. Speaker, we are standing with our ranchers and farmers. This is very important. We are working with them through a working committee, with the provinces and with industry. We are doing different things to support them and to reopen the market in China. We have started conversations through the WTO. We are having technical discussions with Chinese officials. Ambassador Barton is working hard in the field, and we keep working with our industries here in Canada as well.​

Senior-level quotes: Canada’s position on China

General

Arbitrary Detention – Kovrig & Spavor

Would you call them hostages?

Diplomatic Immunities – Michael Kovrig

Meng Wanzhou

Human Rights

Human Rights - Uyghurs

Religious Freedom

Taiwan

Hong Kong

Hong Kong- National Security Law

Rule of Law

Rule of Law - Trade

COVID-19

South China Sea

Section B: Hot Issue Notes:

Canada’s China Strategy

Supplementary messages

Update

GAC officials, in consultation with other departments, are preparing advice on re-framing Canada’s approach to relations with China. The work of various Parliamentary committees, alongside other sources and stakeholders, continues to inform this work.

Supporting facts and figures

5G review

Supplementary messages

Responsive, if asked about specific vendors

Update

Canada is currently undeclared on 5G and on vendor diversification. All other Five Eyes partners have announced measures to ban or restrict Huawei from supplying equipment for the development of their future 5G networks.

Supporting facts and figures

Background

The security of 5G wireless systems has been at the forefront of domestic and international media stories. It is anticipated that the introduction of 5G technology will empower new applications and innovations that will provide many economic opportunities for Canada. The full implementation of 5G in Canada will take many years but is already starting in Canada’s federally regulated wireless telecommunications sector. Canadian Telecommunications service providers are preparing for a 5G spectrum auction that will be held in 2021.

Belt and Road Initiative (BRI)

Supplementary messages

Update

According to Chinese Ministry of Commerce, China’s investment in 54 BRI countries increased by 31.5% between January and August 2020. Nevertheless, construction projects went down 6.2% in 61 BRI countries in the same period. China proposed the revival of a “Health Silk Road” to deal with global health issues such as COVID-19.

Supporting facts and figures

Asian Infrastructure Investment Bank (AIIB)

Supplementary messages Note: Minister Freeland leads this file and questions regarding AIIB should be redirected to the Minister or to Finance Canada.

Update

As of August 20 2020, the AIIB has approved projects worth US$19.8 billion. During the Bank’s fifth Annual Meeting of the Board of Governors (virtual meeting) on July 28, 2020, Chinese-nominated incumbent President Jin Liqun was re-elected for a second term. The AIIB was established in January 2016 and is based in Beijing. It’s a new MDB focused on economic development through infrastructure financing in Asia.

Supporting facts and figures

CanSino Vaccine/PPE

Supplementary messages

Update

Despite the department’s sustained advocacy efforts with Chinese interlocutors to secure the release of the CanSino vaccine candidate shipment, Chinese authorities have not granted the necessary approval. In mid-July 2020, when exports of Chinese vaccine candidates to countries other than Canada were first approved, the Embassy in Beijing and the National Research Council (NRC) agreed that all possible efforts to secure approval had been made. The NRC announced publicly on August 25, 2020, that it would move on to focus on partners other than CanSino. Embassy officials continue to monitor this issue and engage with Chinese counterparts, including CanSino, as part of the global effort to combat COVID-19.

Canada continues to ramp up domestic manufacturing capacity of PPE, with an increasingly greater percentage of PSPC’s contracts for PPE being awarded to Canadian producers. Shipments from other countries are still necessary to meet Canada’s requirements, however, and China remains Canada’s most significant foreign supplier of PPE. PSPC continues to charter flights and sea shipments of necessary supplies such as masks, gloves, and gowns, as needed.

Canadian Agriculture Exports to China

Supplementary messages

China-Canola

China-COVID-19 import measure on food products

Supporting facts and figures

Background

Canola: In March 2019, China suspended canola seed shipments from two major Canadian exporters, Richardson and Viterra, and increased inspection of all Canadian canola seed exports to China, citing alleged discovery of pests. Canada has investigated the concerns raised and concluded that the Canadian shipments met China’s import requirements. Canada has repeatedly requested scientific evidence from China to support its findings to no avail.

Given the limited progress made through bilateral engagement, on September 9, 2019, Canada requested formal consultations at the WTO; consultations took place on October 28, 2019. During the consultations, Canada requested a face-to-face technical meeting to discuss China’s canola seed quarantine and inspection methodology. This meeting took place in December 16 – 20, 2019, in Beijing. Further technical discussions were planned for early 2020, but have since halted due to travel restrictions. Canada sent China a revised investigation report June 2020 and is waiting for China’s reaction to the report.

Canada is assessing next steps, including whether to request the establishment of a WTO dispute settlement panel to adjudicate the dispute. Although Canada’s canola seed exports to China decreased by 70% (to $852.9 million in 2019, from $2.8 billion in 2018), Canadian canola seed exports from January to September 2020 have increased by 52.08% compared to the same period in 2019. The Government has created a working group comprised of industry and officials from AAFC, CFIA, GAC, the governments of Alberta, Saskatchewan, and Manitoba to discuss opinions for regaining market access and market diversification.

China/COVID: Since mid-June, 2020, China has imposed a series of COVID-19 related import measures on food products (affecting mainly meat, fish and seafood) from trading partners based on alleged concerns that food or food packaging may be a source or route of transmission of the virus. China’s measures have included testing of imported food products and suspension of imports from establishments where there have been outbreaks of COVID-19 among workers. Canada’s position, shared by other trading partners, is that there is no evidence that food or food packaging is a likely source or route of transmission or route of transmission of the COVID 19.

The U.S.-China “Phase One” Trade Agreement that entered into force February 14, 2020 requires China to purchase an additional US$200 billion of U.S. goods and services in 2020 and 2021 over 2017 levels. According to the Office of the U.S. Trade Representative, so far in 2020 China has purchased 71% (US$23.6 billion) of its “Phase One” target for agricultural products (US$33.4 billion). Given the current wide-ranging impact of the COVID-19 pandemic, it is difficult to measure the impact that “Phase One” purchases are having on Canada’s agricultural and agri-food industry.

Canada-China commercial relations

Supplementary messages

Update

China’s early rebound from the COVID-19-induced economic downturn has benefitted Canada, with merchandise exports to China up 4.2% in 2020. At the same time, commercial irritants relating to canola seed and cold-chain food restrictions remain (details below and in brief on Canada-China Agricultural Trade).

Supporting facts and figures

China-US relations

Update

A Biden Administration is not expected to make significant changes to the U.S. policy with China, particularly with respect to trade, although there is an expectation that the U.S. approach may be more collaborative with like-minded partners, including through multilateral institutions.

U.S. reactions to Hong Kong national security law

In response to China’s controversial national security law on Hong Kong, implemented on June 30, 2020, President Trump signed on July 14 the bipartisan Hong Kong Autonomy Act which ended U.S. preferential treatment for Hong Kong (including export controls and extradition agreement). On August 7, the U.S. adopted sanctions against Hong Kong’s chief executive, and ten other individuals responsible for the national security law. On November 9, the U.S. administration sanctioned another four individuals in relation to the national security law. In response to China’s very recent decision to remove democratically elected Hong Kong legislators, [REDACTED].

China Consular Cases

Supplementary messages

Background

On December 10, 2018, Mr. Kovrig and Mr. Spavor were arbitrarily detained for allegedly endangering China’s national security. On June 19, 2020, Mr. Kovrig and Mr. Spavor were formally charged with crimes related to national security. Mr. Robert Schellenberg was sentenced to 15 years for drug smuggling in November 2018, he appealed his conviction. In December, the Court of Appeal called for a retrial. In January 2019, the court upheld the conviction and issued a death penalty.

ATIP PROTECTED BACKGROUND

[REDACTED]

Coronavirus

Supplementary messages

Update

Canada delivered an intervention at the WHO Executive Board Special Session on the COVID-19 Response on October 5-6 that indicated our support for the origins investigation and highlighted our commitment to COVAX. The first strategic policy dialogue between Canada and the WHO in 15 years took place virtually from October 27-28, where Health Minister Hajdu highlighted the importance of working closely with all Member States, including China, to identify the zoonotic source of the virus. The WHO Secretariat circulated the Terms of Reference for investigation on November 5, and will provide the next update to Member States on November 19.

Supporting facts and figures

Erosion of Hong Kong’s Autonomy

Supplementary messages

Update

On June 30, 2020, the National People’s Congress (NPC) of China approved and signed into law a bill that imposes national security legislation (NSL) on Hong Kong in a process circumventing the legislative channels of the Hong Kong Special Administrative Region. The legislation criminalizes a wider range of politically-related activities and greatly shrinks the range of freedoms Hong Kong residents have traditionally enjoyed, notably those related to freedom of association and expression. Beijing’s unilateral act follows months of civil unrest in the territory and takes advantage of the focus on combatting Covid-19 and limits on assembly. On May 22, Canada, the UK and Australia released a joint statement to express common concerns. On May 28, Canada, the US, UK and Australia released another statement, reiterating those concerns, followed by a joint statement with the G7 and the EU on June 17. On June 30, Canada joined 27 other countries in releasing a statement expressing our ongoing concerns with the National Security Law imposed on Hong Kong at the UN Human Rights Committee’s 44th session. On July 3, Canada announced a series of measures in response to the imposition and implementation of the National Security Law in Hong Kong, including export control measures, the suspension of the extradition treaty with Hong Kong and an update on the travel advice for the SAR. Prime Minister Justin Trudeau pledged ongoing evaluation of the implications of the law and further responses, including measures around immigration.

On July 31, Hong Kong Chief Executive Carrie Lam announced that she would invoke emergency powers to postpone legislative elections for one year, saying that such measures were necessary in response to a recent rise in COVID-19 infections. On August 9, Canada jointly released a statement of concern alongside the rest of the Five Eyes countries, calling on Hong Kong to reconsider its decision to postpone elections. Most recently, on November 11, the National People’s Congress Standing Committee imposed new rules that resulted in the disqualification of “unpatriotic” opposition lawmakers, which prompted the entire pan-democratic caucus to resign in protest. In response, Minister François-Philippe Champagne released a statement condemning this latest assault on Hong Kong’s high degree of freedoms, and followed up with a joint statement involving Canada, Australia, New Zealand, the United Kingdom and the United States on November 18 reiterating serious concerns over this latest escalation.

There are continuing calls, both from Parliament and among civil society groups, for Canada to take more decisive measures, including imposing “Magnitsky” sanctions against officials responsible for rights violations in Hong Kong and Xinjiang.

Supporting facts and figures

Hong Kong: Canadian Immigration Policy (from IRCC)

Hong kong visa policy

Supplementary messages

Protection measures for Hong Kong residents

Supplementary messages

Resettlement Program

Measures for Hong Kong youth and students

Supplementary messages

Canada’s resettlement program

Supplementary messages

Human Rights Defenders

Supporting facts and figures

Human rights and religious freedom in China

Supplementary messages

Update

Canada discusses issues routinely with Chinese officials and works closely with like-minded, including in multilateral fora to address human rights issues. Canada was among 39 countries that signed a joint statement on Xinjiang and Hong Kong at the U.N. General Assembly’s Third Committee in New York on October 6, 2020.  The human rights situations in Hong Kong, Xinjiang and Tibet are of growing concern

Supporting facts and figures

Uyghurs in China

Supplementary messages

Update

You raised this issue directly with the UN High Commissioner for Human Rights, Michelle Bachelet, during a meeting with her in Geneva in August 2020. In October, Canada, along with 38 other countries, expressed its grave concerns regarding the situation in Xinjiang through a joint statement at the UN General Assembly’s Third Committee. Canada, along with several other countries, has repeatedly called on the Chinese government to allow the Office of the United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights and UN Special Procedures immediate, unfettered, and meaningful access to Xinjiang. Global Affairs Canada’s Trade Commissioner Service has updated its guidance for businesses on the risks of doing business in China, including risks related to human rights abuses and the use of forced labour in Xinjiang and across China.

Supporting facts and figures

Meng Wanzhou Arrest and U.S. Extradition Request

Supplementary messages

Update

The judicial phase of Ms. Meng’s extradition proceedings is currently underway. The dual criminality hearing is complete. The abuse of process hearing is expected to begin in February 2021.

On October 29, Associate Chief Justice (ACJ) Holmes released a decision noting that although Ms. Meng’s allegations do not appear to justify a stay of her proceedings, there is a realistic possibility that some of her allegations can be substantiated. ACJ Holmes’ decision also allowed Ms. Meng’s counsel to introduce certain items of evidence for consideration in the extradition hearing.

The next hearing, scheduled for November 16 - 27, 2020, will be the continuation of witness testimony of CBSA and RCMP officers involved in the arrest of Ms. Meng. On December 7, the B.C. Supreme Court will hear the Attorney General of Canada’s application to exclude certain evidence (of a foreign law expert) from the abuse of process hearings.

Procurement of Physical Security Equipment (Nuctech)

Supplementary messages

Regional Maritime Tensions/South China Sea

Supplementary messages

Update

In recent months China has established new administrative districts to cover two disputed island chains in the SCS, shadowed a Malaysian vessel undertaking natural resource exploration in waters that are claimed by Malaysia, Vietnam and China, and reportedly sank a Vietnamese fishing boat. Regional tensions have heightened as several ASEAN countries as well as Australia and the U.S. have publically criticized recent Chinese actions.

In recent years, Beijing has pursued a more assertive policy to defend its claims in the South China Sea (SCS) and East China Sea (ECS) through persistent entries by Chinese coast guard and militia fishing vessels in disputed waters, including off the coasts of Indonesia, Japan and Vietnam. Tensions between the U.S. and China have escalated concurrently, as the U.S. has increased the frequency of its “Freedom of Navigation Operations” (FONOPs) to challenge China’s claims. In July of 2020 the U.S. announced a more forward leaning policy towards maritime claims in the SCS, which includes a rejection of any Chinese claim to waters beyond a 12-nautical mile territorial sea derived from land features it claims in the Spratly Islands. In September, 2020, the U.K., France and Germany submitted essentially identical note verbales to the United Nations challenging the legality of China’s maritime claims in the SCS, that are not consistent with the United Nations Convention on the Law of the Sea.

Supporting facts and figures

Taiwan

Supplementary messages

Canada’s One China Policy

Taiwan’s meaningful participation in global health discussions

Cross-Strait tensions

Canada-Taiwan Economic Consultations

CPTPP Accession and Canada-Taiwan FIPA

Update

In recent months, PLAAF aircraft have increased its patrols in the Taiwan Strait, including near or past the “median line” (not recognized by Beijing). In November, when the World Health Assembly resumed its 2020 session, Taiwan was again not invited to participate as an observer in the Assembly over objections from the PRC and its international partners.

Supporting facts and figures

Tibet

Supplementary messages

Update

Canada remains concerned about the human rights of Tibetans. Canada’s Ambassador to China, Dominic Barton participated in a Chinese government hosted visit to Lhasa, Tibet from October 26-30, 2020. This was the first visit to Tibet by a Government of Canada official since 2015.

supporting facts and figures

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