Canada Launches Global Trade Complaint Against US Over Use of Duties

Canada Launches Trade Dispute Against US in WTO, Washington Strikes Back

US Trade Rep Blasts Canada WTO Complaint About US Duties

"Canada's claims are unfounded and could only lower USA confidence that Canada is committed to mutually beneficial trade", Lighthizer said in statement.

While Canada continues to hope for the best from the NAFTA renegotiation, Freeland says it is also preparing for the worst-case scenario - a decision by President Donald Trump to withdraw from the three-way, continental trade pact.

The 32-page complaint challenges Washington's use of anti-dumping and countervailing duties, arguing it goes against WTO rules.

Filing the complaint is referred to as a request for consultations.

"For decades, the Canadian lumber industry has been subject to unfair and unwarranted duties imposed by the U.S. Department of Commerce, and has filed appeals under the NAFTA and WTO agreements", said Susan Yurkovich, president of the BC Lumber Trade Council.

Put another way, Canada may be taking on the United States on behalf of the rest of the world, whether by default or construction.

It also might result in a flood of imports from other countries - if the complaint successfully have American tariffs removed - and cost Canada billions of dollars in exports to the US, Lighthizer said. Trying to get as much as possible from the process by using all political and legal means available is simply part of the process.

However, Canada's strategy is "particularly unwise", Warner told Xinhua.

She says Canada will bring some new, "creative" ideas to the sixth round of NAFTA negotiations later this month in Montreal, in response to some of the "more unconventional" USA proposals.

The confusion over Canadian expectations comes ahead of the next round of negotiations, scheduled to be held in Montreal Jan. 23-28.

On Dec. 20, 2017 Canada filed a WTO complaint against the United States concerning its trade practices that Canada says violate global trade law.

Across the negotiating table, the United States argues that chapter 19 is unnecessary because the WTO exists, (it did not when NAFTA came into force) and because the United States system is not biased in favour of US firms.

Ottawa's 32-page complaint packs a wallop, accusing the USA of violating WTO rules in anti-dumping and countervailing duty probes focused not.

In other words, Canada is trying to show that the United States cannot have it both ways; they can't eliminate chapter 19 and disregard the WTO's authority to judge the US trade remedy system and its decisions.

"These rates tabled lby the US on uncoated groundwood paper represent the third action that stands to hurt hard working men and women in our mill communities across Canada", says Derek Nighbor, CEO, Forest Products Association of Canada.

Ideally, Canada would want to keep both chapter 19 and the United States' commitment to the WTO, since it gives it more ammunition in disputes.

US Trade Representative Robert Lighthizer has described Canada's move as "ill-advised attack".

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