Office of the United States Trade Representative


Schwab Pleased by Canadian Action taken on Softwood Lumber Agreement
Canadian House of Commons Adopts Ways and Means Motion 09/19/2006

WASHINGTON – U.S. Trade Representative Susan C. Schwab released the following statement after the Canadian House of Commons adopted a Ways and Means motion that will allow Canada to implement the Softwood Lumber Agreement. The House of Commons voted 172-116 in favor of the motion.

"I am delighted by this action of the Canadian Parliament. We are one critical step closer to the Softwood Lumber Agreement entering into force. We are one step closer to ending decades of contentious litigation and returning predictability and stability to the market."


Last Tuesday, September 12, Ambassador Susan C. Schwab and Canadian Trade Minister David Emerson signed the text of the Softwood Lumber Agreement.

Under the terms of the Agreement, all litigation over trade in softwood lumber will come to an end and unrestricted trade will occur in favorable market conditions. When the lumber market is soft, Canadian exporting provinces can choose either to collect an export tax that ranges from 5 to 15 percent as prices fall or to collect lower export taxes and limit export volumes. The agreement will also include provisions to address potential Canadian import surges, provide for effective dispute settlement, distribute the antidumping and countervailing (anti-subsidy) duty deposits currently held by the United States, and discipline future trade cases. The Agreement will also establish a bi-national working group to discuss provincial policy reforms.

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