Rail shipment of lumber from B.C.’s Interior. (Black Press Media files)

Rail shipment of lumber from B.C.’s Interior. (Black Press Media files)

Despite shortage, U.S. moves to double some Canadian lumber duties

B.C. industry says American builders, home buyers will pay

The latest U.S. government decision to more than double countervailing and anti-dumping duties on some Canadian lumber producers is the latest setback for B.C.’s industry, the largest Canadian exporter to builders south of the border.

Friday’s preliminary ruling from the U.S. Department of Commerce doesn’t take effect until a final determination is made at the end of November, but the B.C. industry group says it is a “troubling” reversal of the last ruling that lowered duties for producers other than major lumber companies including Canfor and West Fraser.

“It is particularly egregious given lumber prices are at a record high and demand is skyrocketing in the U.S. as families across the country look to repair, remodel and build new homes,” B.C. Lumber Trade Council president Susan Yurkovich said in a statement May 21. “As U.S. producers remain unable to meet domestic demand, the ongoing actions of the industry, resulting in these unwarranted tariffs, will ultimately further hurt American consumers by adding to their costs.”

The preliminary ruling would increase duties from 8.99 per cent to 18.32 per cent for imports from companies other than Canfor, West Fraser, Resolute and J.D. Irving. Canfor faces the highest rate, 21 per cent, and West Fraser’s rate is 11.38 pending a final decision next fall.

B.C. Forests Minister Katrine Conroy said the duties unfair to producers in Canada and home buyers in the U.S., especially at a time when both countries are starting to recover from the COVID-19 pandemic.

“Now, more than ever, it’s essential to keep supply chains open for both sides of the border as Canada and the U.S. enter the next, post-vaccination phase of our economic recovery,” Conroy said in a statement. “We need open and stable supply chains for both countries to prosper during recovery, not trade barriers.”

With B.C. in an advisory role, the Canadian government is challenging the duties through the World Trade Organizaiton and the Canada-U.S.-Mexico agreement’s dispute settlement mechanisms.

RELATED: Even at lower rate, duties unjustified, trade minister says

RELATED: U.S. can’t show harm from Canada, NAFTA panel says


@tomfletcherbc
tfletcher@blackpress.ca

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.

BC politicssoftwood lumber

Just Posted

An example of the forest land in the Port Renfrew and Fairy Creek area of Vancouver Island is shown on May 11, 2021. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Jen Osborne
Old-growth logging opponents launch hunger strike as arrests continue at Fairy Creek

Zain Haq says the hunger strikers will gather today at Burrard Street in downtown Vancouver

The City of Victoria is hoping to ring in the summer by celebrating local art and offering some distanced, live music to surprise people in parks, plazas and other public spaces. (Photo courtesy of the City of Victoria)
Live, pop-up concerts and local art being showcased in Victoria this summer

People will see surprise serenades at 16 locations throughout the summer

An example of the forest land in the Port Renfrew and Fairy Creek area of Vancouver Island is shown on May 11, 2021. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Jen Osborne
Old-growth logging opponents launch hunger strike as arrests continue at Fairy Creek

Zain Haq says the hunger strikers will gather today at Burrard Street in downtown Vancouver

The 14th annual Oak Bay Young Exceptional Star (YES) awards June 3. (Christine van Reeuwyk/News Staff)
Oak Bay celebrates its Young Exceptional Stars with outdoor award ceremony

Nine young people recognized in 14th annual awards

Jada Benwell and Connor Larkey are the valedictorians of the 2021 graduating class at Parkland Secondary School. (Wolf Depner/News Staff)
Pandemic taught lessons in perseverance for North Saanich high schoolers

Parkland Secondary School to release 2021 grad ceremony video on June 25

Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau participates in a plenary session at the G7 Summit in Carbis Bay, England on Friday June 11, 2021. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Adrian Wyld
Canada donating 13M surplus COVID-19 vaccine doses to poor countries

Trudeau says the government will pay for 87 million shots to be distributed to poor countries

Premier John Horgan speaks as provincial health officer Dr. Bonnie Henry, right, and health minister Adrian Dix look on during a press conference to update on the province’s fall pandemic preparedness plan during a press conference from the press theatre at Legislature in Victoria, Wednesday, Sept. 9, 2020. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Chad Hipolito
B.C. officials to provide details on Step 2 of COVID reopening plan Monday

Step 2 could allow for larger gatherings and a resumption of recreational travel

Indigenous Services Minister Marc Miller is seen during a news conference, Wednesday May 19, 2021 in Ottawa. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Adrian Wyld
Indigenous child-welfare battle heads to court despite calls for Ottawa to drop cases

Feds are poised to argue against two Canadian Human Rights Tribunal rulings

The Great Ogopogo Bathtub Race has been held in Summerland as a fundraising event. Do you know which Canadian city introduced this sport? (Black Press file photo)
QUIZ: A summer’s day at the water

How much do you know about boats, lakes and water?

Two-year-old Ivy McLeod laughs while playing with Lucky the puppy outside their Chilliwack home on Thursday, June 10, 2021. (Jenna Hauck/ Chilliwack Progress)
VIDEO: B.C. family finds ‘perfect’ puppy with limb difference for 2-year-old Ivy

Ivy has special bond with Lucky the puppy who was also born with limb difference

A million-dollar ticket was sold to an individual in Vernon from the Lotto Max draw Friday, June 11, 2021. (Photo courtesy of BCLC)
Lottery ticket worth $1 million sold in Vernon

One lucky individual holds one of 20 tickets worth $1 million from Friday’s Lotto Max draw

“65 years, I’ve carried the stories in my mind and live it every day,” says Jack Kruger. (Athena Bonneau)
‘Maybe this time they will listen’: Survivor shares stories from B.C. residential school

Jack Kruger, living in Syilx territory, wasn’t surprised by news of 215 children’s remains found on the grounds of the former Kamloops Indian Residential School

A logging truck carries its load down the Elaho Valley near in Squamish, B.C. in this file photo. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Chuck Stoody
Squamish Nation calls for old-growth logging moratorium in its territory

The nation says 44% of old-growth forests in its 6,900-square kilometre territory are protected while the rest remain at risk

Most Read