Softwood Lumber Trade Dispute - Recent Developments
On April 24, the U.S. Department of Commerce issued its preliminary countervailing duty (CVD) determination.
CVD Rates: Canfor 20.26%; Tolko 19.50%; West Fraser 24.12%; Resolute 12.82%; Irving 3.02%; all other companies 19.88%. Duties are in effect starting April 28, 2017, the date of publication of preliminary CVD determination, for four months.
Critical Circumstances: The Department of Commerce made a preliminary finding of critical circumstances for Irving and the “all others” group of companies, but not for Canfor, Resolute, Tolko and West Fraser. As a result, Irving and the “all others” companies will be subject to retroactive CVD duties on import entries made as of January 28, 2017. The Department of Commerce’s critical circumstances determination will also apply to any preliminary anti-dumping determination, expected on June 23, 2017. The preliminary finding of critical circumstances may or may not be upheld when the Department of Commerce and the International Trade Commission make their respective final determinations on duties and injury.
Product Scope: In the preliminary determination, the Department of Commerce did not rule on various product scope exclusion requests submitted by Canada, and B.C., and other interested parties. The Department of Commerce has sole discretion in determining what is covered by the product scope in this investigation. Product scope decisions are anticipated at the final countervailing and anti-dumping determinations.
Company Exclusion Process: The Department of Commerce claimed that it does not have the legal authority to conduct a company exclusion process in this company-specific investigation. Following publication of the final CVD order, expected in January, 2018, companies will have 30 days to request the Department of Commerce to conduct an expedited review to establish a company specific rate for each requesting company.
The links below give further information and updates on various topics related to this Canada-U.S. trade issue. Please also check the federal government website for additional updates, frequently asked questions and announcements.
Softwood Lumber Information
- Frequently Asked Questions: Softwood lumber dispute (updated April 28, 2017)
- Information Bulletin on Softwood Lumber: Preliminary countervailing duty rate announced, April 24, 2017
- Canada's response to U.S. Department of Commerce preliminary determination
- Statement by Canada on Softwood Lumber (April, 24, 2017)
- Canada's explanation on scope (April 25, 2017)
- Canada's explanation on the company exclusions process (April 25, 2017)
- B.C. government actions on softwood lumber, April 7, 2017
- Statement from Special Envoy David Emerson, March 8, 2017
- Federal-Provincial Task Force on Softwood Lumber Announced, February 22, 2017
- Premier Christy Clark names David Emerson B.C. Trade Envoy to the United States, February 14, 2017
- Fact Sheets
- Canada-U.S. softwood lumber trade: Why it should matter to Americans (February 15, 2017)
- Government support for forestry dependent communities (updated April 7, 2017)
- B.C.’s forest economy: softwood lumber (February 15, 2017)
- Canada-U.S. Softwood Lumber Trade (updated April 26, 2017)
- Trade Litigation 2017
- Negotiations 2015 - 2017
- Company Exclusion Preparatory Information
- Background on the Softwood Lumber Agreement 2006