August 12, 2013 / 10:05 AM / 4 years ago

PRESS DIGEST-Canada-Aug 12

Aug 12 (Reuters) - The following are the top stories from selected Canadian newspapers. Reuters has not verified these stories and does not vouch for their accuracy.


* The Senate expenses scandal could bring a fresh round of bad news for the Canadian government this week, with Tuesday’s release of an independent audit into expenses claimed by Senator Pamela Wallin. Wallin has repaid at least C$38,000 ($36,900) since the audit by Deloitte began, and sources told The Globe in June she could be asked to repay an additional C$20,000 for excessive travel claims. ()

* A combination of new dairy technology and the inherently rich incentives to get around Canadian tariffs of 200 to 300 percent have spawned an explosion of protein imports. Major Canadian dairy farmers and processors, who have long fought imports, have started adding foreign milk ingredients to their products instead of domestic milk, underscoring the increasingly difficult task of shielding home markets in a globalized industry. ()

Reports in the business section:

* Housing starts, sales and prices are once again defying expectations, one year after Finance Minister Jim Flaherty shocked the market with tighter mortgage insurance rules. The sector is showing such strength this summer that some economists are wondering whether Flaherty will go further in a bid to stem rising house prices and consumer debt levels. ()

* The government won’t back down on allowing large foreign companies into Canada’s wireless market, says Prime Minister Stephen Harper, adding that he is more interested in promoting competition than in protecting the big domestic telecom companies. ()

* Canada lost nearly 40,000 jobs in July, the latest manifestation of an economy stuck awkwardly between recession and recovery. The sharp drop in employment last month, led by losses in the public sector, comes just two months after the economy turned in a record monthly job gain of nearly 100,000. Volatility, it seems, has suddenly become the new normal in the Canadian job market. ()


* After two months in jail, former Liberal Senator Raymond Lavigne is expected to petition the Ontario Parole Board on Tuesday to serve the last four months of his sentence from home, according to reports. Lavigne was convicted of fraud in March 2011 after making false travel claims and found guilty of breach of trust. ()

* Canada’s Integrated Terrorism Assessment Centre, which operates within CSIS, the Canadian spy agency, closely monitored the activities of the aboriginal “Idle No More” movement in late 2012 and early 2013. The intelligence agency claimed it was doing so not over fear of protests getting out of hand, but to protect the activists from potential violence by others. ()

* Canada should get out of is cold war mindset and move the majority of its warships from Halifax to the British Columbia coast in response to the Chinese navy’s aggressive military buildup, say defence analysts. The U.S. government has already announced its plan to put 60 percent of its naval assets on its west coast by 2020. ()

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