BC lumber producers welcome federal government’s appeal to World Trade Organization

B.C. lumber producers said on Wednesday that they welcome the federal government’s efforts to vigorously defend Canada’s interests in trade relations with the U.S. In particular, the federal government has requested that the WTO examine the use of certain systemic trade practices that violate international trade law.

Susan Yurkovich, President of the BC Lumber Trade Council, said in a statement: “For decades, the Canadian lumber industry has been subject to unfair and unwarranted duties imposed by the U.S. Department of Commerce, and has filed appeals under the NAFTA and WTO agreements. We know that when unbiased entities review these unfair trade practices, they have found in Canada’s favour.

“Canada and the U.S. enjoy one of the most productive trading relationships in the world. However, this relationship depends on fair process and practices. As such, BC Lumber Trade Council fully supports the Government of Canada’s efforts to have the WTO review these trade practices.”

B.C. is the largest Canadian exporter of softwood lumber to the U.S. The B.C. forest industry is a major contributor to the provincial economy and supports approximately 145,000 direct and indirect jobs in the province. The BC Lumber Trade Council is the voice on trade matters for companies in B.C. representing the majority of B.C. lumber production.