National Newswatch

Federal government needs to protect critical minerals industry as China tightens grasp, report says

Jun 22 2021 — Jesse Snyder — The federal government is due for a “wake-up call” on the need to protect Canada’s critical minerals industry, as China tightens its grip on supplies of rare earths and other crucial materials, a new Parliamentary report says. The minerals, which include magnesium, lithium and cobalt, are used to make electric car batteries, mobile phone components, […]

Health agency head in ‘extraordinary situation’ after opposition motion puts him in contempt of Parliament

Jun 19 2021 — Jesse Snyder — After his department was found in contempt of Parliament for failing to provide top-secret documents to a special House committee, the head of Canada’s federal health agency said he now finds himself in an “extraordinary situation” unlike any he has witnessed in his nearly 30-year career. Iain Stewart, president of the Public Health Agency of […]

NDP renews calls to keep COVID benefit at $2,000-per-month, as part of effort to push ‘true left’ identity

Jun 17 2021 — Jesse Snyder — Jagmeet Singh renewed his call on the federal government to abandon a planned cut to a major COVID-19 benefit program, the latest effort by the NDP to distinguish itself from the Liberals as the party of social conscience. Beginning in July, the federal government plans to trim the $2,000-per-month Canada Recovery Benefit (CRB) down to […]

Trade minister dodges questions on whether Canada has curbed suspected forced-labour imports from China

Apr 26 2021 — Jesse Snyder — Canada’s international trade minister on Monday would not provide details about whether the federal government has barred the flow of imported goods from China suspected of using forced labour, months after Ottawa introduced measures purportedly to stop the practice. In a committee testimony, Minister Mary Ng declined to answer questions from a Conservative MP about […]

Costs for consultants hired by government rise by $6 billion under Liberals

Apr 12 2021 — Jesse Snyder — Fees paid by the federal government to third-party consultants have ballooned since the Liberals took office in 2015, with expenditures for engineering, legal and other services rising $6 billion in six years. Costs for “professional and special services” increased to $16.4 billion in 2019-20, up from $9.5 billion when the Liberal government took office — […]

Mining executives warn Ottawa about dependence on China for strategic minerals amid deteriorating relations

Apr 5 2021 — Jesse Snyder — Mining executives and national security experts are warning the federal government about China’s domination of strategic mineral supplies, saying Ottawa needs to better protect supply chains for modern technology that relies on them like electric vehicles and smart phones. In testimony before the House of Commons natural resources committee this month, experts described China’s decades-long […]

Canada could be shut out of Biden’s $2-trillion infrastructure spending plans, Canadian negotiator warns

Mar 4 2021 — Jesse Snyder — The federal government’s chief trade negotiator is concerned that Canada could be shut out of U.S. President Joe Biden’s trillion-dollar infrastructure spending plans, the latest sign of continued anxieties over America’s protectionist trade policies. Congress last week approved Biden’s massive $1.9-trillion COVID-19 relief package, composed in part of infrastructure spending measures aimed at rebuilding U.S. […]

Liberals’ COVID-19 benefit programs continue to outpace wage losses, new StatsCan data show

Mar 1 2021 — Jesse Snyder — Canadians experienced “extraordinary changes in their economic well-being” during the pandemic as they gained thousands of dollars more from COVID-19 support payments than they lost in wages, according to new data from Statistics Canada. During one three month period last year, young and middle-aged households generally gained around $3,000 more through support measures, particularly the […]

Makers of next-generation fighter jets tout economic benefits as Ottawa readies COVID-19 stimulus plans

Feb 26 2021 — Jesse Snyder — Industry is urging the federal government to prioritize its $19-billion plans to buy a new fleet of stealth fighter jets, saying the massive procurement contract would provide crucial economic stimulus following a year of COVID-19 lockdowns. Their comments come after Finance Minister Chrystia Freeland last year announced plans to roll out up to $100 billion […]

Liberals accused of ‘toxic disdain for democracy’ as committee debates basis for proroguing Parliament during pandemic

Jan 28 2021 — Jesse Snyder — Opposition members on Thursday accused the Liberal government of blatant partisan manoeuvring when it prorogued Parliament last summer, in what one MP said showed a “toxic disdain for democracy” by the prime minister. Liberal, Conservative and NDP members of the Standing Committee on Procedure and House Affairs debated whether Prime Minister Justin Trudeau was justified […]