Minister’s Remarks on Softwood Lumber Duties

Alice Hansen

The Honourable Mary Ng, Minister of International Trade, Export Promotion, Small Business and Economic Development announced that Canada is disappointed that the United States continues to impose unwarranted and unfair duties on Canadian softwood lumber. While the duty rates will decrease from the current levels for most exporters, the only genuinely fair outcome would be for the United States to cease applying baseless duties to Canadian softwood lumber.

“These duties have caused unjustified harm to the Canadian industry and its workers. They also amount to a tax on U.S. consumers, exacerbating housing unaffordability at a time of increased supply challenges and inflationary pressures.”

On August 4, 2022, the U.S. Department of Commerce issued the final results of the third administrative review of its anti-dumping and countervailing duty orders regarding certain softwood lumber products from Canada.

“Canada’s forestry sector is supporting hundreds of thousands of good, middle-class jobs for Canadians across the country. We will continue to vigorously defend their interests through all available avenues, including litigation under NAFTA and CUSMA, as well as at the WTO. International tribunals have consistently found the U.S. duties to be unjustified, and we believe this will again be the case.”

Following completion of any legal challenges under CUSMA’s Chapter 10 or in U.S. courts, these new anti-dumping and countervailing duty rates will apply retroactively to softwood lumber exports to the United States from companies subject to the third administrative reviews. In the future, the new combined “all others” rate that will apply to exports from companies subject to the third administrative review is 8.59%. The current “all others” rate for most companies is 17.91%.

“Canada is a long-standing and reliable partner to the United States. Canadian lumber products have long met needs in the United States for high-quality, sustainable, and innovative building materials. Canada has always been willing to work with the United States to explore ideas that could allow for a return to predictable cross-border trade in softwood lumber. We remain confident that a negotiated solution to this long-standing trade issue is in the best interests of both our countries, and we welcome an open dialogue with the United States to this end. Canada intends to challenge the final results of the third administrative review, including through launching a dispute settlement process under Chapter 10 of the Canada-United States-Mexico Agreement (CUSMA).”

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