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QUESTION PERIOD — Global Affairs

Special Economic Measures Act

March 19, 2024

My question is for the Leader of the Government. Leader, in December 2022, the Trudeau government issued a press release entitled “Canada starts first process to seize and pursue the forfeiture of assets of sanctioned Russian oligarch,” targeting well-known Russian Roman Abramovich.

The press release stated the following:

This is the first time that Canada is using its new authorities that allow the government to pursue the seizure of assets belonging to sanctioned persons. This means that Minister Joly will now consider making a court application to forfeit the asset permanently to the Crown.

A year and a half later, nothing has happened. Why is it taking so long? How long will Minister Joly continue to “consider,” and when will she take action?

Hon. Marc Gold (Government Representative in the Senate) [ - ]

Thank you for your question. I cannot provide a timeline for the government’s actions. Canada has a robust system of sanctions and has legislation in place to ensure that we can move forward. I am confident that the minister and the government will ensure that the sanctions are applied in a reasonable manner.

A Russian cargo plane has been held at the Pearson airport in Toronto for two years now. The Trudeau government does not want to tell us what is happening with that cargo plane. Rumour has it that Canada is waiting for permission from other countries before turning over the plane to Ukraine. Senator Gold, is that true? Does the Trudeau government need permission from other countries to decide how to help Ukraine?

Senator Gold [ - ]

The answer is no. Canada is working in close cooperation with its allies around the world to ensure that our actions are coordinated and effective. Canada is part of a coalition of democratic countries that are working together to ensure that Ukraine is protected and supported.

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