Canada says American lumber duties will hit Canadian timber jobs and US consumers

2 May 2017

Canada has criticised the US government’s decision to impose countervailing duties of up to 24% on Canadian softwood lumber entering the US.

“These duties stand to hurt hard working men and women in our mill communities across Canada,” said Derek Nighbor, CEO of the Forest Products Association of Canada.

“The duties are unwarranted and without merit. We 100% support the federal government’s “Team Canada” position and we must have a fair and equitable trading structure for both our industry and US customers.”

Mr Nighbor also said the duties would have a negative impact not only here in Canada but also on US consumers.

“Currently, American demand for lumber far exceeds what the American industry is able to produce. They need Canada’s softwood lumber.”

The US department of commerce determined that Canadian sawmills received what amounted to subsidies ranging from 3% to 24%.

Last year US imports of softwood lumber from Canada were valued at an estimated US$5.66bn. The department of commerce, which is to issue its final determination on September 7, will instruct US Customs and Border Protection to collect cash deposits based on these preliminary rates.