The Globe and Mail reports in its Friday, Aug. 5, edition that the U.S. Department of Commerce is lowering tariffs against most Canadian softwood producers by half, but the trade dispute lingers as Canada plans to appeal the decision to maintain punitive duty rates.
The Globe's Brent Jang writes that the Commerce Department said Thursday it will decrease the duty rate for most Canadian lumber producers to 8.59 per cent, compared with the current 17.91 per cent.
The Commerce Department had made its intentions known in January to reduce tariffs, proposing a preliminary duty rate of 11.64 per cent, and has now reduced that amount further with the final rate of 8.59 per cent. Canfor, J.D. Irving and West Fraser Timber will pay tariffs at slightly lower levels than other Canadian lumber producers. The new rates are slated to take effect on Aug. 10 or soon after.
International Trade Minister Mary Ng said U.S. duties on Canadian lumber are unwarranted and unfair. She said: "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."
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