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.
Since the Softwood Lumber Agreement with Canada expired in October 2015, the U.S. Lumber Coalition has been working hard to support 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 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. For a new trade 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. 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.
As part of the 2006 trade agreement, the U.S. industry agreed that it would not file new petitions for relief from subsidized or low-priced imports for one year after the agreement's expiration. That one-year "standstill" period ends on October 13, 2016. If no new agreement with Canada has been reached by that date, the Coalition will evaluate whether the time is right to file new petitions against imports of softwood lumber from Canada that are subsidized, dumped, or both.
To file the most effective petitions possible, the Coalition intends to demonstrate that a majority of the U.S. softwood lumber industry -- whether formal Coalition members or not -- supports investigations of unfairly traded Canadian softwood lumber imports. Any U.S. producer of softwood lumber may support the petition if it chooses to do so. Signing a letter and supporting the petition does not imply membership in the Coalition or require payment of any kind. However, if your company has not joined the Coalition and would like to do so in addition to expressing your support for the petition, your participation would be an important addition to the efforts of the whole U.S. industry.
Click here to download a letter to indicate your support for an investigations of unfairly traded Canadian softwood lumber imports.
Click here for a Q&A regarding the softwood lumber petition support letters.