Many U.S. newspapers complained that tariffs on Canadian newsprint would make it harder for them to operate.(Angela Major/The Janesville Gazette via AP, File)

Newsprint tariff imposed by U.S. on Canada killed

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The U.S. International Trade Commission has overturned duties that were imposed on Canadian newsprint saying that U.S. producers were not harmed by Canadian imports. The tariffs would have threatened the survival of five Canadian pulp mills and severely hurt the towns were they were located, said Jerry Dias, president of the Unifor labour union.

The U.S. newspaper industry had argued against the tariffs saying they would increase the cost of newsprint and force them to trip the size of their papers or lay off staff.

A year after the U.S. imposed tariffs on Canadian softwood lumber it was American consumers who felt the pain of higher costs. (Darryl Dyck/The Canadian Press/file)

Tariffs hurt U.S. interests

This trade dispute mirrors others between Canada and the United States. The protectionist Trump administration is threatening to put tariffs on Canadian vehicles. That action would hurt U.S. manufacturers because vehicles often cross the U.S.-Canada border several times during the course of production.

U.S. President Donald Trump has repeatedly complained about Canada and threatened trade action against the country. He has railed against Canada’s supply management system for milk products and eggs, when Canada actually imports more of these products from the U.S. than it exports, and Canada has one-tenth the population. In addition, the U.S. has its own hefty agricultural subsidies.

Forestry an important sector of Canadian economy

Canada is the world’s largest producer of Newsprint. Newsprint is part of the important forestry sector  which overall injects $23 billion into the Canadian economy, says Dias, adding that it represents $34.4 billion in exports. Canada has won several disputes with the United States over its export of softwood lumber and recently began fighting another. The U.S. is trying to change the dispute settlement mechanism.

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Posted in Economy, International, Politics

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