OTTAWA, Aug. 24 /CNW/ - A foreign takeover of the Potash
Corporation of Saskatchewan would threaten potash mineworkers and their
communities across the country, says the president of the union
representing about 3,000 potash workers, including 800 miners,
production and construction workers at PCS.
"As a branch plant of multinational giant such as BPH, all rules for
civilized negotiations to keep jobs and investment in Canada would be
off the table," says Communications, Energy and Paperworkers President
"Right now CEP and PCS have agreements in place that promote local
hiring and put the people of Saskatchewan first. But, speaking from
experience, it's very difficult to extract that commitment from a
company headquartered in a different hemisphere."
Coles says there is also growing concern that a foreign owner would
destroy the work of Canpotex, which markets and exports Canadian potash
for the benefit of Canada. "It's a slippery slope toward a monopoly,
says Coles, and all Canadian potash mining companies would be
"Our manufacturing base is taking another hit," he adds, "and once again
it begs the question: 'who is in control of Canadian resources'"? When
it comes to the oil industry, our raw bitumen is being shipped to the US
for value-added processing. In forestry, we have raw logs going to China
Given its track record, Coles holds out little hope that the Harper
government will step in to stop any takeover. He notes that the
Investment Canada Act outlaws foreign takeovers that do not deliver a
"net benefit" to Canada. Since the Act came into force in 1985, only one
takeover has been rejected, while 13,500 have gone ahead.
"This is one more iconic Canadian industry on the chopping block under
Mr. Harper's watch.
"Canadians deserve public hearings and full public disclosure of the
government's reasons for accepting or rejecting any takeover bid. That
will come in handy at election time!"
SOURCE Communications, Energy and Paperworkers Union of Canada
For further information: For further information:
Dave Coles at 613 299-5628 (cell)