Canada Canada disappointed with U.S. final softwood lumber duty rate, says trade minister
U.S. hikes duty on Canadian softwood lumber to 17.9% — twice the old rate
Officials from various Canadian governments and the lumber industry are expressing their disappointment that the U.S. has decided to go ahead with a plan to double the amount of duty it imposes on softwood lumber that comes from Canada. On Wednesday, the U.S. Department of Commerce said it will proceed to impose duties of 17.9 per cent, on average on softwood lumber imported from Canada. That's twice the previous 8.99 per cent rate. In May, the U.S. government said it planned to hike the rate to 18.32 per cent, but after further analysis over the summer the agency decided to ratchet down that plan, but still double the levy. The U.
OTTAWA — International Trade Minister Mary Ng and B.C.'s lumber producers say they are disappointed that the U.S. Department of Commerce has decided to increase duties on Canada's softwood lumber producers.
The U.S. government said Wednesday that its final combined anti-dumping and countervailing duty rate for most Canadian producers will be 17.9 per cent.
That's slightly below the 18.32 per cent preliminary rate issued in May but double the initial 8.99 per cent rate.
Ng called on the U.S. to stop imposing "these unwarranted duties" that harm Canadian communities, business and workers while also raising costs of housing and renovations for U.S. consumers.
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First Reading is a daily newsletter keeping you posted on the travails of Canadian politicos, all curated by the National Post’s own Tristin Hopper. To get an early version sent direct to your inbox every Monday to Thursday at 6 p.m. ET (and 9 a.m. on Sundays), sign up here. TOP STORY One of the few surprises in Tuesday’s Throne Speech was that the Liberal government intends to empower provinces to ban handguns if they want to . Under a proposed law , the federal government would refuse to issue restricted (ie: handgun) licences in any province or municipality that votes to become a “no handgun” jurisdiction.
Final rates for four Canadian producers have been slightly reduced from May. The final rate for Canfor Corp. is 19.54 per cent, down from 21.04 per cent; West Fraser Timber Co. Inc. is 11.12 per cent, down from 11.38 per cent; Resolute Forest Products Inc. is 29.66 per cent, down from 30.22 per cent; and JD Irving is 15 per cent, down from 15.82 per cent.
The BC Lumber Trade Council says the final rates are not unexpected but still disappointing, especially since U.S. producers are unable to meet domestic demand.
“Our strong hope is that the U.S. industry will end this decades-long litigation and instead work with us to meet demand for the low-carbon wood products the world wants, including American families," stated council president Susan Yurkovich.
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"Until then, we will continue to vigorously defend our industry against these meritless allegations."
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Ng said the Canadian government will continue to defend the softwood lumber industry including through litigation under Chapter 10 of the CUSMA trade deal with Canada, the U.S. and Mexico, NAFTA's Chapter 19 and at the World Trade Organization.
"At every step of the way, rulings have found Canada to be a fair trading partner," she said in a news release.
“Canada has always been willing to explore ideas that allow for a return to predictable cross-border trade in softwood lumber and remains confident that a negotiated solution to this long-standing trade issue is in the best interest of workers in both our countries.”
Alberta Agriculture, Forestry and Rural Economic Development Minister Nate Horner said the higher tariffs are completely unacceptable.
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“Any amount of duties unfairly targets our softwood lumber exports and these decreasing and then increasing rates create uncertainty on both sides of the border," he said in a news release.
Horner said the U.S. is a critical customer with 91 per cent of softwood lumber exports valued at $1.2 billion going south.
Conservative MPs say the softwood lumber duties show that Prime Minister Justin Trudeau's promise of a renewed relationship with the U.S. is failing.
“Instead, we got an EV tax credit that threatens Canadian auto manufacturing, stringent Buy American policies, measures targeting agricultural producers, and actions against energy pipelines — contributing to skyrocketing energy prices. And now, the U.S. is again targeting Canada by doubling tariffs on Canadian softwood," said Michael Chong, foreign affairs critic, and Randy Hoback, international trade critic.
This report by The Canadian Press was first published Nov. 24, 2021.
Companies in this story: (TSX:CFP, TSX:WFG, TSX:RFP)
The Canadian Press
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HALIFAX — The mass killing in Nova Scotia and the COVID-19 pandemic helped push the number of homicides nationally in 2020 to its highest level in nearly 30 years, Statistics Canada reported Thursday. The new survey says 743 homicides were reported by Canadian police in 2020 — a figure that was the most since 1991 and includes the 22 victims of a gunman's rampage that began in Portapique, N.S., in April of last year. "This attack contributed toThe new survey says 743 homicides were reported by Canadian police in 2020 — a figure that was the most since 1991 and includes the 22 victims of a gunman's rampage that began in Portapique, N.S., in April of last year.