Canada, Senate Debates, “Absence of Oil-Pricing Agreement—Effect on September Meeting of First Ministers”, 32nd Parl, 1st Sess (12 June 1980)

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Date: 1980-06-12
By: Canada (Parliament)
Citation: Canada, Senate Debates, 32nd Parl, 1st Sess, 1980 at 456-457.
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SENATE DEBATES — June 12, 1980

[Page 456]



Hon. R. James Balfour: Would the Leader of the Government tell us if it is the policy of the government that an agreement on oil pricing with the energy-producing provinces is critical to the achievement of success in the constitutional negotiations now under way?

Hon. Raymond J. Perrault (Leader of the Government): Honourable senators, this is an important question. The government, of course, would like to have that as a prior condition. The matter is presently being discussed.

Senator Balfour: As a supplementary, is the Leader of the Government aware of the fact that yesterday Premier Blakeney of Saskatchewan joined Premier Lougheed in suggesting that there is a direct relationship between the two sets of talks, and that the absence of an oil-pricing agreement will directly affect the chances for success of the constitutional negotiations in September?

Senator Perrault: The government is aware of certain positions taken by certain premiers with respect to the talks and

[Page 457]

the priorities which have been established by these governments. It should be borne in mind that statements have been made by other provincial and party leaders on other aspects of the talks. This process is not unexpected. The information is known to the government.

Senator Balfour: As a final supplementary, would the leader tell us if the government agrees with the sentiments expressed by Premier Blakeney and if it still expects resolution of the oil-pricing situation before the existing agreement expires on July 1?

Senator Perrault: I think the honourable senator is aware that strenuous efforts have been made by representatives of the federal government to achieve some agreement with respect to oil pricing. Those efforts are continuing and will continue during the weeks to come. Hopefully this matter can be resolved in advance of the September meeting of first ministers.

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