Printer Friendly

Home builders support NAFTA's lumber ruling.

The nation's home builders have called on the Bush administration to rescind punishing tariffs on Canadian lumber imports following last Friday's unanimous ruling by a North American Free Trade Agreement panel that Canada does not subsidize its lumber industry.

"This marks the sixth time in the past three years that a NAFTA panel has found no justification for the U.S. to be imposing countervailing duties on Canadian lumber shipments into the American marketplace," said David Pressly, president of the National Association of Home Builders and a home builder from Statesville, N.C. "It's time for the U.S. to honor its legal obligations by eliminating these border taxes that are unnecessarily raising the cost of housing and refunding to Canada the duties that have been collected."

Currently, there is an 8.7% countervailing duty on Canadian lumber imports and anti-dumping duties averaging about 2.1%.

The U.S. government imposed countervailing and anti-dumping duties totaling 27% on softwood lumber in May of 2002, charging that Canadian imports represented a "threat" to domestic lumbers. The percentage was subsequently reduced on two separate occasions, but remains above 10%.

U.S. law permits countervailing duties to be imposed only if a foreign supplier is benefiting from subsidies and U.S. producers are being injured or threatened with injury as a result.

Last week's verdict reaffirmed previous NAFTA findings that determined that the subsidy is below 1%, which under U.S. law means that the lumber imports are not subject to duties.

The U.S. has until April 27 to file an appeal to the decision. Last week's ruling has no effect on anti-dumping duties of 2.1%.

Several NAFTA panel decisions have unanimously determined that the Commerce Department was using flawed calculations to reach the conclusion that Canadian lumber is subsidized. And on Aug. 10, a NAFTA Extraordinary Challenge Committee upheld an earlier NAFTA ruling that found no threat of injury from Canadian imports. It also stipulated that the U.S. was required to refund the billions of dollars of duties that Canada has paid to date.

Although a NAFTA ruling carries the weight of law in Canada, the U.S. and Mexico, the administration has failed to implement decisions that invalidate the lumber duties.
COPYRIGHT 2006 Hagedorn Publication
No portion of this article can be reproduced without the express written permission from the copyright holder.
Copyright 2006, Gale Group. All rights reserved. Gale Group is a Thomson Corporation Company.

Article Details
Printer friendly Cite/link Email Feedback
Publication:Real Estate Weekly
Date:Mar 29, 2006
Previous Article:PB redesigns its own structure.
Next Article:Structural deconstruction nears for 130 Liberty Street.

Related Articles
Mayor joins fight against U.S.-imposed tariffs. (Timmins and Cochrane).
Softwood lumber: fight for fairness continues. (Guest Column).
Lumber price drop?
Ruling provides sliver of hope for forest industry.
Softwood 'biggest trade dispute in the world': end is near for U.S. trade battle, says OFIA.
Softwood wars.
Byrd on its way out the window: the law allowing the White House to give softwood duties to American mills is being phased out and duties have been...
A truce in softwood war.
Ontario lumber groups sue over softwood.
Softwood from Russia on table at conference.

Terms of use | Privacy policy | Copyright © 2019 Farlex, Inc. | Feedback | For webmasters