Canadian lumber industry celebrates NAFTA panel ruling

Friday 13 Sep 2019

A joint NAFTA panel has given the United States three months to rethink its tariffs on imported Canadian softwood lumber but the saga for Canada’s troubled softwood companies is far from over.

The five panel members — including three Canadians and two Americans — said in a ruling on Wednesday they couldn’t agree with the U.S. International Trade Commission that there was evidence Canadian imports were causing injury to the U.S. industry. It gave the commission 90 days to reconsider the evidence it used to draw that conclusion.

“This decision supports what Canada has been saying all along: U.S. duties on Canadian softwood lumber are unfair and unwarranted,” said Foreign Affairs Minister Chrystia Freeland in a statement. The panel’s decision is an important step in the right direction in having these duties on Canadian exports removed and the sums collected reimbursed.”

Among the panel’s findings is that the U.S. softwood industry was in the midst of its most profitable period ever, which made it hard to accept the conclusion that Canadian wood was harming it.

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Source: Vancouver Sun

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