B.C. braces for new U.S. lumber trade action

Notice of American litigation follows expiry of last Canada-U.S. softwood lumber agreement in October

B.C. still sells half of its lumber exports to the U.S.

One of a series of articles on the future of the B.C. forest industry. You can find the series on Facebook or Twitter by searching for the hashtag #BCForestFuture or at the links below.

TOKYO – B.C.’s government and forest industry are disappointed but not surprised at the latest trade action launched Friday by the U.S. lumber industry.

The notice of litigation comes after the last Canada-U.S. softwood lumber agreement expired in October.

Forests Minister Steve Thomson received the news as he began his annual forest products trade mission to Japan Friday. The U.S. remains B.C.’s largest lumber customer, although Japan, China, India and other markets have improved in recent years.

“We are disappointed that the U.S. lumber industry has petitioned its government to launch trade litigation,” Thomson said. “We encourage the U.S. government to review previous cases and determine that the U.S. industry allegations against Canada are unfounded.”

Susan Yurkovich, president of the B.C. Lumber Trade Council, is also on the Asia trade mission, aimed at reducing B.C.’s dependence on the U.S., which still buys half of B.C.’s export lumber.

She said the industry will “vigorously defend” against the latest trade action, agreed with Thomson that a new “managed trade” agreement with restrictions on Canadian lumber exports is the most likely compromise.

“Similar claims were made in the prior round of trade litigation and were ultimately rejected by independent NAFTA panels, which concluded that Canadian lumber is not subsidized and did not cause injury to the U.S. industry,” Yurkovich said.

The U.S. Department of Commerce is responsible for conducting trade litigation, and is expected to decide by mid-December which industry allegations it will investigate.

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

Just Posted

Iconic white raven returns to Parksville Qualicum Beach area

Photographer John Domovich: ‘It blew me away when I first observed it’

Parksville’s Summer by the Sea event starts June 30

‘We are looking forward to providing a vibrant market’

Vancouver Island’s current COVID-19 case count officially hits zero

Of the 130 recorded Island Health cases, five people have died, 125 recovered

Qualicum Beach man arrested over racist incident at Tseshaht First Nation

Port Alberni RCMP said the man turned himself in

Trudeau offers $14B to provinces for anti-COVID-19 efforts through rest of year

Making a difference in municipalities is a pricey proposition

‘I’m pissed, I’m outraged’: Federal minister calls out police violence against Indigenous people

Indigenous Minister Marc Miller spoke on recent incidents, including fatal shooting of a B.C. woman

Indigenous families say their loved ones’ deaths in custody are part of pattern

Nora Martin joins other Indigenous families in calling for a significant shift in policing

Facing changes together: Your community, your journalists

The COVID-19 pandemic has changed the world in ways that would have… Continue reading

‘Alarmed’: Health critic calls for more data on COVID-19 in trucking industry

Saskatchewan, Ontario and Quebec said that level of detail is not being collected

UPDATED: Pair accused of ‘horrific’ assault at Vancouver’s Oppenheimer Park arrested

Police say Jason Tapp, 30, and Nicole Edwards, 33, did not show up to meet their bail supervisor this week

Kelowna Mountie who punched suspect identified, condemned by sister

‘How did he get away with this? How is this justifiable?’

PHOTOS: Anti-racism protesters gather in communities across B.C.

More protests are expected through the weekend

Most Read