The U.S. Commerce Department has made good on a threat to impose a tariff on Canadian Softwood Lumber. The move came last night (April 24) when President Trump announced that a tariff (or tax) of up to 24 percent on Canadian softwood after trade talks on dairy fell through.
Some U.S. dairy farmers are struggling to find new markets after Canada announced a new policy that essentially favors its own dairy producers and shuts out certain dairy imports from the U.S.
Additionally, there has been accusations for years that the Canadian lumber industry is government-subsidized, leading to unfair competition for U.S. lumber companies, and unbalancing the free trade agreement.
The following statement was issued yesterday, April 24, by Secretary of Commerce Wilbur Ross: ”It has been a bad week for U.S.-Canada trade relations. Last Monday, it became apparent that Canada intends to effectively cut off the last dairy products being exported from the United States. Today, in a different matter, the Department of Commerce determined a need to impose countervailing duties of roughly one billion dollars on Canadian softwood lumber exports to us. This is not our idea of a properly functioning Free Trade Agreement.”