“Punitive” Countervailing Duties Imposed

Prince George, BC, Canada / CKPG News
"Punitive" Countervailing Duties Imposed

As expected, the U.S. Commerce Department has imposed countervailing duties on Canadian softwood lumber producers. In this preliminary determination, countervailing duty rates imposed are as follows: Canfor 20.26%, JD Irving 3.02%, Resolute 12.82%, Tolko 19.5%, West Fraser 24.12%, and 19.88% for all other British Columbian and Canadian producers.
“These duties are unwarranted, and this determination is completely without merit,” said Susan Yurkovich, President of the BC Lumber Trade Council.  “The allegations made by the U.S. lumber lobby are the same arguments they made in prior rounds of litigation, all of which were rejected and overturned by independent NAFTA panels. This new trade action is driven by the same protectionist lumber lobby in the U.S. whose sole purpose is to create artificial supply constraints on lumber and drive prices up for their benefit, at the expense of American consumers.”
The countervailing duties are just the first round of duties, with a finding on anti-dumping duties to be imposed in June.
The duties imposed in this first round are seen as “punitive” and are much higher than analysts anticipated. In the last round of trade negotiations, the combined countervailing and anti-dumping duties were about 27%.
A decision on anti-dumping duties is expected on June 23rd.

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