WTO rules in Canada's favour on dispute with U.S. on glossy paper duties
A copy of Flare magazine is seen at a news stand in Montreal, Saturday, Nov. 7, 2015. (THE CANADIAN PRESS/Paul Chiasson)
The Canadian Press
Published Thursday, July 5, 2018 4:03PM EDT
The World Trade Organization has ruled largely in favour of Canada in a dispute with the United States over duties on glossy paper.
The WTO said Thursday it found the U.S. Department of Commerce acted inconsistently with trade rules in its justification for imposing countervailing duties on supercalendered paper, which is mainly used in magazines, catalogues, corporate brochures and advertising inserts.
Canada had asked in 2016 that the WTO look into the duties, and how the U.S. went about investigating the issue.
Global Affairs Canada spokesman John Babcock said by email that the government acknowledges the WTO ruling that the U.S. breached its obligations when it made its countervailing duty determination.
He said Canada requests the U.S. implement the panel's findings promptly, rescind the duty order and refund all duties collected since it went into effect.
Joel Neuheimer, vice president of international trade for the Forest Products Association of Canada said in a statement that the association welcomes the WTO ruling.
Last year, a NAFTA review panel also ruled in Canada's favour with a unanimous decision to order the U.S. Department of Commerce to reconsider its duties against Canadian mills that produce glossy paper.
The U.S. imposed the duties in 2015, including a 20.18 per cent duty on Nova Scotia's Port Hawkesbury Paper, a 17.87 per cent duty against Montreal-based Resolute Forest Products, and a duty of 18.85 per cent on the J.D. Irving mill in New Brunswick and Catalyst Paper of British Columbia.
The U.S. had claimed Canadian producers had received unfair subsidies, including cheap government-supplied electricity.
Exports of supercalendered paper from Canada to the United States were valued at $959 million in 2014.