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Softwood lumber tariff hitting Canfor hardest

Canfor paying 19.54%; West Fraser 11.12%
Canfor Corp. is bearing the biggest brunt as new tariffs on softwood lumber exports into the United States come into effect.

Starting this week, the penalty will be 19.54%, more than quadruple the 4.62% it had been paying and of little solace from the fact the U.S. Commerce Department had been considering a slightly higher 21% in May when preliminary tariffs were announced.

Combined, Canadian lumber producers will be paying 17.9% -  slightly below the 18.32% preliminary rate issued in May but double the initial 8.99% rate.

"We are very disappointed with the U.S. Department of Commerce’s decision to double the unwarranted duties on Canadian softwood lumber," Canfor spokesperson Michelle Ward said. 

"This decision hurts our B.C. forest industry and it hurts American families who rely on our low-carbon wood products. We will continue to strongly defend Canfor against these unjustified duties."

West Fraser Co. Ltd. is paying 11.12%, compared to 8.97%, giving the company a competitive advantage.

 The rates came into effect on Thurs., Dec. 2, are expected to be in place until summer 2022.