FREE TRADE NEEDED ON SOFTWOOD LUMBER #LSN_Econ
THUNDER BAY, On - Sept 1, 2016 (LSN) The Thunder Bay Chamber of Commerce is speaking out about the need for free trade on softwood lumber for the local forest industry. Canadian and U.S. government officials are working to reach a new deal before the one-year freeze on any new countervailing and anti-dumping duties expires in October but time is running out.
“The United States has been clear that they want a one size fits all solution that would manage lumber imports and reduce Canada’s share of the US market,” says Charla Robinson, President of the Thunder Bay Chamber of Commerce. “A hard cap quota would have a detrimental effect on the Northwestern Ontario forest industry and is not a good deal for Canada.”
Thunder Bay Chamber of Commerce representatives have met with local Members of Parliament the Hon. Patty Hajdu and Don Rusnak to express their support of Canada’s Ambassador, David MacNaughton, who in a July 2016 letter to U.S. Senator Ron Wyden, made it very clear that Canada’s forest sector is not subsidized and “despite repeated investigations and litigation in this sector over the past 35 years, there has never been a countervailing subsidy finding or an adverse impact determination by the U.S. government that has survived legal challenge”.
“We are asking for the Government of Canada to vigorously defend Canada’s right to free trade and to provide support to the Canadian forest industry by providing financial support for the industry in its legal defense and loan guarantees to help with cash flow on any new duties or tariffs that may be imposed by the United States,” continued Robinson. “While we are hopeful that a deal can be reached, industry must be assured of government support should negotiations fail.”