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Press release
May 11, 2019

The CAQ Refuses to Modernize the SAQ to Offer Consumers Better Choices


The MNA representing Robert-Baldwin and Official Opposition Critic for Finance, Mr. Carlos J. Leitão, questioned the Minister of Finance, Mr. Éric Girard, in the hopes of encouraging the government to modernize the SAQ’s business model and promote the sale of Quebec-made products.

Today, the government also opposed a motion presented by Mr. Leitão to mandate the Committee on Public Finance to study and make appropriate recommendations on a report entitled “Évolution du modèle d’affaires de la SAQ” (Evolution of the SAQ’s Business Model) which was submitted to the government by the PricewaterhouseCoopers (PwC) firm on September 12, 2018.

It’s clear that the Quebec Liberal Party has always sought to offer all of the province’s consumers the greatest selection of products at the best possible price.

Recall that it was for that reason that the previous Liberal government launched a reflection on the SAQ’s business model. It sought to optimize the existing model, not replace it with privatization.

The CAQ refuses to entrust the Committee on Public Finance with a mandate to examine the possibility of modernizing the SAQ’s business model to enhance distribution and better showcase Quebec-made products. We want to improve the offer to Quebec consumers and the CAQ refuses to even examine the issue.

—Carlos J. Leitão, MNA for Robert-Baldwin and Official Opposition Critic for Finance

Text of the motion presented by the MNA representing Robert-Baldwin on May 8, 2019:

“THAT, in an effort to modernize the SAQ’s business model and promote the sale of Quebec-made products, the National Assembly mandate the Committee on Public Finance to study and make appropriate recommendations on a report entitled ‘Évolution du modèle d’affaires de la SAQ’ (Evolution of the SAQ’s Business Model) which was submitted to the government by the PricewaterhouseCoopers (PwC) firm on September 12, 2018;

THAT, within the framework of this mandate, the Committee hold particular consultations and public hearings during which it can hear from the authors of the said report, as well as the Société des alcools du Québec, the Association des marchands dépanneurs et épiciers du Québec, Mr. Frédéric Laurin, Professor in the Department of Finance and Economics at UQTR, and all other people and organizations that it deems necessary to convene;

THAT the organization of the mandate be entrusted to the Committee members;

THAT the Committee will report to the Assembly before November 1, 2019, unless the Committee decides otherwise;

Finally, that this motion becomes an order of the Assembly.”

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