Montreal Gazette - - FP MONTREAL -

The fed­eral gov­ern­ment on Tues­day launched a NAFTA trade chal­lenge of the U.S. Com­merce Depart­ment’s de­ci­sion ear­lier this month to im­pose du­ties on Cana­dian soft­wood lum­ber ex­ports. The gov­ern­ment is pur­su­ing the chal­lenge un­der the North Amer­i­can Free Trade Agree­ment’s Chap­ter 19 dis­pute set­tle­ment mech­a­nism, which the United States wants to re­move as part of talks to mod­ern­ize the three-na­tion trade pact. “We will force­fully de­fend Canada’s soft­wood lum­ber in­dus­try, in­clud­ing through lit­i­ga­tion, which we are launch­ing today,” the for­eign min­istry said in a state­ment. It called Wash­ing­ton’s Nov. 2 de­ci­sion to im­pose fi­nal du­ties on Cana­dian lum­ber ex­ports as “un­fair, un­war­ranted, and deeply trou­bling.” The U.S. Com­merce Depart­ment ac­cuses Canada of un­fairly sub­si­diz­ing and dump­ing soft­wood lum­ber.


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