Dimension lumber is the backbone of B.C.’s forest industry. (Black Press Media)

B.C. forest industry celebrates lumber trade ruling against U.S.

World Trade Organization rejects softwood subsidy claim

The World Trade Organization has upheld Canada’s challenge to the latest round of countervailing duties on softwood lumber imports to the U.S., in what the B.C. industry organization calls a “scathing indictment” of U.S. government trade actions.

B.C. Premier John Horgan said while the decision is welcome, the decades-long dispute isn’t going away.

“While this decision is a victory for B.C.’s lumber producers, immediate relief is unlikely,” Horgan said in a statement Aug. 24. “Our work continues until we bring an end to the unfair U.S. duties on Canadian softwood exports.”

The WTO ruling identifies 40 instances where the U.S. Department of Commerce finding of subsidy was not supported by the evidence, the B.C. Lumber Trade Council said Aug. 24. Among them, the WTO trade panel upheld Canada’s arguments on log export regulation, supplying electricity to mills and the U.S. government’s use of Washington log prices to impose penalties for B.C. stumpage on Crown timber.

“For more than three years, our industry has paid billions of dollars in countervailing duties that today’s decision confirmed should never have been paid in the first place,” said Susan Yurkovich, president of the trade council.

“This report is a scathing indictment of the U.S. Department of Commerce’s subsidy findings and the biased process it followed in reaching them. Unfortunately this is just the latest chapter in the ongoing attack on the Canadian lumber industry. Each of the prior two lumber disputes ended with neutral, international tribunals issuing rulings that forced Commerce to rescind their flawed and unsupported findings for similar reasons. Today’s decision is an important step towards what we expect will be the same result.”

RELATED: NAFTA panel upholds U.S. softwood ‘injury’ claim


@tomfletcherbc
tfletcher@blackpress.ca

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.

BC legislatureforestry

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

B.C. Premier announces fall election

Kootenay East MLA Tom Shypitka reacts to election announcement

Unofficial holidays: Here’s what people are celebrating for the week of Sept. 20 to 26

Rabbit Day, Hobbit Day and One-Hit Wonder Day are all coming up this week

Interior Health reports three additional COVID-19 cases in region

The number of cases in the region since the beginning of the pandemic are now at 492

UPDATE: Fire above Sparwood no threat to community

Mayor David Wilks reported it may be due to an exposed coal seam

Conservative opposition critic tours through Kootenay riding on listening tour

Pierre Poilievre, the Tory finance critic, gathering local feedback on pandemic supports, recovery issues

COVID-19: 4 more deaths, 366 new cases in B.C. since Friday

A total of 8,208 people in B.C. have tested positive for COVID-19 since January

16 COVID-19 cases reported in Interior Health region

One person is in hospital and 34 people are isolating

Group wants Parliament, courts to hold social media to same standard as publishers

Daniel Bernhard made the comments shortly after Friends of Canadian Broadcasting released a research paper

Join Black Press Media and Do Some Good

Pay it Forward program supports local businesses in their community giving

Is it time to start thinking about greener ways to package cannabis?

Packaging suppliers are still figuring eco-friendly and affordable packaging options that fit the mandates of Cannabis Regulations

B.C.’s Chase Claypool catches first NFL touchdown pass

Abbotsford grad establishes new record for longest scrimmage TD by a Canadian

Missing Lardeau man not found, underwater search called off

Thomas Schreiber was last seen on Sept. 15

B.C. has highest number of active COVID-19 cases per capita, federal data shows

B.C. currently has 1,803 active cases after weeks of COVID-19 spikes in the province

Most Read