Canada is claiming a win in the softwood lumber dispute with the US following the World Trade Organisation‘s (WTO) latest ruling on the issue.

A WTO panel said the US had failed to prove its claim that certain Canadian softwood lumber exports are being unfairly subsidised.

But the panel also denied Canada’s claims that the US is using incorrect data to back up its case.

Previous rulings by the WTO and North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA) panels have failed to force the US to rescind its demanding duties on Canadian timber. Canada’s timber producers have paid out almost C$5bn since duties were first levied in May 2002.

The US is considering an appeal against the latest decision, which it has dismissed as a technical matter, while a further NAFTA ruling is expected soon.