Wood­lot owner says tar­iffs hurt­ing in­dus­try in P.E.I.

The Guardian (Charlottetown) - - THE ISLAND - BY RYAN ROSS Ryan.ross@the­guardian.pe.ca

Tar­iffs on Cana­dian wood go­ing to the U.S. are dec­i­mat­ing the mar­kets, says the pres­i­dent of the P.E.I. Wood­lot Own­ers As­so­ci­a­tion.

John Rowe made the re­marks in re­sponse to the lat­est soft­wood lum­ber dis­pute with the U.S. that has seen it im­pose new tar­iffs on Cana­dian ex­ports.

“It’s putting ev­ery­body out of work,” Rowe said.

P.E.I.’s forestry in­dus­try is small, and Rowe said most of its wood­lots are pri­vately owned.

With no ma­jor sawmills in P.E.I., that wood has to leave the prov­ince, Rowe said.

“Our ma­jor mar­ket is an ex­port mar­ket.”

Rowe said other prov­inces have large Crown wood hold­ings and big busi­nesses in­volved in the in­dus­try, but P.E.I. is get­ting lumped in with them in the trade dis­pute.

The ar­gu­ment from the U.S. side is that Canada’s in­dus­try is heav­ily sub­si­dized, Rowe said. “It’s id­i­otic.”

Rowe, he said he wants a fu­ture for the in­dus­try in P.E.I.

“They want our lum­ber. They want our trees.”

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