60 second briefing on Canada-China Investment Treaty: is that it?

by Michelle Lovegrove Thomson on October 26, 20122 comments

On Wednesday, MP Elizabeth May delivered a very short summary of the impacts of the Canada-China Investment Treaty, currently under review being pushed through Parliament.

According to a press release from May’s office earlier this month, “On September 9th, Prime Minister Stephen Harper signed an agreement with China, the Canada-China Investment Treaty. The agreement was kept from the Canadian public and Parliament until September 26th, 2012, when it was quietly made public, tabled in the House of Commons. No press release. No technical briefing. The deal is set for automatic approval. No vote or debate will take place in the House.”

You can view a clip of May’s short speech on her website:

“Mr. Speaker, here is your 60 second briefing on the Canada-China investment treaty, the most significant treaty of its kind since NAFTA. I requested a technical briefing from the Minister of International Trade on September 27. I got it one hour ago, so I can update folks.

It confirms that Chinese state-owned enterprises would have the right to complain and charge for damages for decisions in Canada by municipal, provincial, territorial or federal governments. It confirms this treaty will apply till 2027 for a minimum, and potentially till 2042, and China can complain of anything it feels is arbitrary.

It will be of greater benefit to Chinese investors in Canada than to Canadian investors in China. No province has been asked if it approved of this agreement.

Yesterday, the Prime Minister asked that members of this place should acquaint themselves with the treaty. I have. It threatens our security, our sovereignty and our democracy. Yet this 60 seconds will be the only briefing this House gets.”

This video is a quickie intro to the issue for those unfamiliar with what has been taking place since September. I’m posting the video not to say “no” to Chinese investor interest, but to once again point to the absolute contempt for procedure and transparency on the part of the Harper Government™.


Benzel on October 29, 2012 at 11:46 am. #

We see how China, and most of Asia treats the environment… these people are on the whole prolific and incredibly short sighted. Giving them ‘rights’ on OUR soil would no doubt result in the utter rape of our people and resources at CUT RATE PRICES.

Michelle LT on October 29, 2012 at 12:11 pm. #

Hi Benzel, I would caution against generalizing entire continents as “these people” who do egregious wrongs, including “raping” “our land” and “our people”. The thrust of my post is the sheer duplicity of the Canadian government in ushering through an act they know will be unpopular, without proper debate in House. Obviously some very powerful Canadians stand to benefit from this deal, or Harper would not be pushing it through. I think we can imagine who the beneficiaries if this investment act will be, and it will certainly not be Chinese labourers.

I’d also like to draw your attention to how a section of North American people treat their environment:

Thanks for your comments.