Canada To Fight US Lumber Duties
- Author: Leroy Wright May 09, 2017,
May 09, 2017, 8:34
However, Trudeau's office was less positive in its assessment of the conversation with Trump, during which the PM "refuted the baseless allegations by the US Department of Commerce and the decision to impose unfair duties", Efe news reported. "It was a very amicable call". The step escalates an economic battle among neighboring countries that normally have one of the friendliest worldwide relationships in the world.
United States Secretary of Commerce Wilbur Ross on Tuesday says the USA has put Canada on notice for not paying its fair share on trade.
The lumber and milk fall-out sets the two sides up for a wider battle as they renegotiate the North American Free Trade Agreement.
The trade tensions this week are over a tiny portion of the US-Canada trade relationship.
Lumber and dairy are long-standing irritants - and were also a problem file under previous presidents.
As CBC noted in a tweet, Trump's tariff would make USA houses more expensive and cost American workers hundreds of millions of dollars in the form of lost wages.
Trump has called the move "a disgrace" that hurts U.S. producers in dairy states like Wisconsin.
Up to now, Trump's harshest criticisms of NAFTA have focused on Mexico, but in the past few days the president has shifted his sights to accuse Canada of harming USA farmers and milk producers.
"... And this has been going on for a while, and we're not going to put up with it", Trump had said.
The dispute became news across the state when Grassland Dairy notified almost 60 farms in Wisconsin it would no longer buy their milk starting May 1st because of new trade policies by the Canadian government.
Speaking to a technology company in Ontario, Trudeau said he would defend the national interest, and cabinet colleagues were poised to speak to the media to outline Canada's possible responses to the tariffs later in the day. "If the market was being flooded by cheap Canadian lumber, you wouldn't see that happening right now".
President Donald Trump imposed the first tariffs of his administration, up to 24.1 percent aimed at Canada's lumber industry, the Commerce Department announced.