Liberals keen to pass bill to advance CPTPP amid NAFTA uncertainty


OTTAWA — Parliamentarians will take their seats for the last house session in at least a decade in historic Centre Block when the house reopens for the fall sitting this week in Ottawa.

It will mark the final sitting of Parliament before the Centre Block building closes for an estimated 10-year renovation. But it will also mark the beginning of the one-year countdown to the October 2019 federal election.

The Trudeau Liberals have a number of key bills they want to see passed before heading to the polls, including a massive bill to overhaul federal election laws as well as firearms legislation to widen the scope of background checks for gun purchasers.

Government is also particularly keen to move quickly on bill C-79 — a bill to implement the Comprehensive and Progressive Agreement for Trans Pacific Partnership (CPTPP).

Government House Leader Bardish Chagger says finalizing this trade deal with the Pacific Rim is necessary to help open new markets for Canadian exports. This has become especially important in light of ongoing tense negotiations on NAFTA in Washington.

Chagger says she believes the Opposition Conservatives used obstructionist tactics to stall the progress of government bills last Spring — something she hopes will not continue this fall. But if they do, she says, government is prepared to use its “limited tools,” such as time allocation, to move things along.


The Canadian Press


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