Conservatives Call on Liberals to Create Special Committee on Canada-China Relations
December 10, 2019
ON – Today, Canada’s Conservatives are using
their Opposition Day to debate the following motion:
“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;
- 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;
- 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;
- that membership substitutions be permitted, if required, in the manner provided for in Standing Order 114(2);
- 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;
- that the Clerk of the House shall convene an organization meeting of the said committee for no later than January 20, 2020;
- that the committee be chaired by a member of the government party;
- 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;
- 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;
- 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;
- that the committee have the power to authorize video and audio broadcasting of any or all of its proceedings; and
- 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.”
The Hon. Erin O’Toole, Conservative Shadow Minister for Foreign Affairs, and Luc Berthold, Shadow Minister for Infrastructure and Communities, released the following statement:
“Over the past four years, Canadians have lost confidence in Prime Minister Trudeau on matters related to foreign affairs and nowhere has this been more evident than with the present diplomatic crisis with the Chinese government. A former Canadian Ambassador to China described Trudeau as being ‘naive’ when it comes to the Government of China and the last few years have shown that description to be accurate. From the sale of Canadian security companies without a national security review, to the consideration of an extradition treaty, to standing up other Asia-Pacific leaders during trade negotiations, the Prime Minister has failed to adequately stand up for Canadian interests and has weakened the support of allies when we need them the most. The present diplomatic crisis with the Chinese government shows no sign of improvement and continues to impact the well-being of our citizens, our export sectors and our national interests around the world.
“Canadians have no confidence in the Prime Minister when it comes to the diplomatic dispute with the Chinese government. The relationship between Canada and Beijing was already in decline under the Trudeau Liberals when crisis hit following the lawful extradition arrest of a Chinese citizen a year ago. The Trudeau Liberals were unable to quickly respond adequately to this situation and Trudeau’s hand-picked political ambassador, John McCallum, was forced to resign after a series of gaffes made the situation even worse. A year has passed, and our citizens remain imprisoned, exporters remain unfairly targeted to retaliation and the Liberals seem almost unable to act on issues related to Beijing whether they relate to 5G infrastructure, the protests in Hong Kong, the internment of Uyghurs and a range of other important issues.
“The diplomatic crisis with the Chinese government shows no sign of improvement and Trudeau has no plan on how to deal with Beijing. His own actions are also isolating Canada on the world stage with few allies providing the support needed to help Canada resolve these diplomatic issues. For all of these reasons, the Conservative Caucus will be moving an opposition day motion striking a special committee to investigate in detail the depths of Canada’s diplomatic crisis with the Government of China. The Committee will have the power to call the Prime Minister, the Foreign Affairs Minister, the Canadian Ambassador to China and other key experts and observers to allow Parliament to raise concerns with the Chinese government with a view to having a serious approach to bi-lateral relations with that country for the first time in four years.
“Canadians deserve transparency and accountability when it comes to Canada’s relationship with Beijing, and they deserve to know that their government is standing up for the national interest. Canada’s Conservatives have a strong record of standing up for Canada on the world stage. We strongly urge the Liberals to do the same, support our motion and strike a special committee on Canada-China relations.”