February 10, 2005

Senators Say Trade Findings Prove Canadian Dumping; News Benefits Idaho Sawmills And Workers

Washington, DC â?? Idahoâ??s senators say findings announced today by the U.S. Department of Commerce are of substantial benefit to forest products businesses in Idaho and across the U.S. and reaffirm the significant subsidy Canadian softwood lumber producers receive from the Canadian government. The Commerce Department announced a final administrative review that sets combined Countervailing Duty and Anti-dumping duty rates at 21.2%. That rate, which affects duties that Canada must pay the U.S. on lumber exported to the U.S is up substantially from a preliminary finding announced in June. Crapo and Craig joined a bipartisan group of senators asking Commerce Secretary Donald Evans to â??account for the full value of subsidies and dumpingâ?? when it issued the final trade determinations announced today. In addition, Craig and Crapo debated the trade case on the floor of the U.S. Senate. They applauded the Commerce announcement. â??The U.S. Department of Commerce has once again determined that the Canadian government does indeed subsidize lumber production and has unfairly dumped lumber into the U.S. market. As a result of that decision, Canadian producers must now pay a 21.2% duty on lumber exported to the United States. This is very good news for Idahoâ??s lumber producers, mill workers and their families who have felt the severe economic impact of this situation for years. It is also significant because the Canadians will be hard-pressed to continue arguing that there is no subsidy or dumping going on,â?? Senator Mike Crapo said. â??While I am pleased with Commerceâ??s decision today, I will continue to work with our Canadian neighbors on this tough issue to achieve free trade and a fair competitive market for an industry that is important to both our countries.â?? â??I applaud the final duty determination issued by the Department of Commerce as it reaffirms that truck loads of subsidized lumber continue to dilute our U.S. market,â?? Senator Larry Craig said. â??The overabundance of Canadian softwood in the U.S. market has caused the lights to go out permanently in many a mill in Idaho and across the United States. With these final duty determinations, Iâ??m hopeful that some of those lights may come back so, so more workers may return to their jobs.â?? The Department of Commerce findings reveal Canadian softwood lumber has been subsidized and the new rates that should be collected from importers are a countervailing, or anti-subsidy, rate of 17.2% plus an anti-dumping duty of 4%. The new rates in todayâ??s findings reflect a trading period from May 2002 through March of 2003, but the new duty rates would also be used from this day forward as a basis for future duty payments. # # #