Lumber Market Report

President Barack Obama and Canada’s Prime Minister Justin Trudeau recently released a joint statement regarding common goals for pursuing a new and durable agreement on softwood lumber trade.

The U.S. Lumber Coalition says it supports continued negotiations between the two nations aimed at designing an effective framework for offsetting trade distortions and job losses in the U.S. market caused by unfairly priced Canadian imports.

The Coalition also says it sincerely appreciates the hard work that the U.S. government is doing on behalf of the entire U.S. industry and its workers to bring about an effective agreement to manage the harmful effects caused by subsidized Canadian lumber trade.

Both leaders acknowledged that a key feature of any new agreement is for it to be designed to maintain Canadian exports at or below an agreed U.S. market share.

According to the Coalition, the U.S. lumber industry’s overarching goal is to restore an environment in which it can invest, grow to its natural size, and better be able supply the U.S. market, which will help restore the thousands of jobs lost to unfair trade, and can only happen if the domestic industry is not being impaired by unfairly traded imports.

For a new agreement to be durable, it must establish border measures that are effective in all market situations and be sufficiently robust to prevent Canadian producers from exceeding the target market share, says the Coalition. The U.S. industry will not give up its rights under the U.S. trade laws in return for an agreement that fails to meet these objectives.

The Coalition says it will continue working with the U.S. government to support negotiations between the United States and Canada aimed at a new, effective, and sustainable Softwood Lumber Agreement. The Coalition says it is hopeful that this process will secure an agreement that U.S. companies, their hundreds of thousands of workers, and their communities who must have fair trade to survive, can support.

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