Softwood lumber dispute is bad for consumers and producers

The big losers from the tariff are, without a doubt, American consumers

Softwood lumber dispute is bad for consumers and producersBy Olivier Rancourt and Gabriel Giguere The Canadian softwood lumber dispute with the United States, which has been dragging on for some 40 years now, is long overdue for a resolution. Despite setbacks before WTO and NAFTA tribunals, accusations of subsidized production from American decision-makers and producers continue. The accusations have notably led to the…

The hard facts on B.C.’s softwood lumber dilemma

It's time B.C. pushed hard to diversify its economy, improved its infrastructure, and looked for new and stable markets for its lumber products

The hard facts on B.C.’s softwood lumber dilemmaWhat can be done about the softwood lumber disagreement that hangs like an axe over British Columbia’s forest industry? Dealing with the United States on issues like this is like nailing jelly to the wall. There’s far too much inconsistency and backtracking. For example, U.S. President Donald Trump has put all of the North American…

Fix the exchange rate, solve the U.S.-Canada trade problem

At the heart of almost every trade dispute between our countries is the wildly-fluctuating value of Canada’s dollar

Fix the exchange rate, solve the U.S.-Canada trade problemIt's beginning to look like Donald Trump has developed a paranoid obsession with Canada. Pick a market segment and the American president has slammed Canada for unfair trade practices. He threatened to impose a 20 per cent tariff on Canadian softwood lumber. He took aim at Canada's dairy industry, which he described as a “disgrace.” He sent a shot across…

Fixed exchange rates an easy fix to Canada-U.S. trade relations

At the heart of Canada-U.S. trade problems is the wildly fluctuating Canadian dollar

Fixed exchange rates an easy fix to Canada-U.S. trade relationsCanadians have expressed relief that U.S. President Donald Trump only wants to “tweak” trade relations with Canada and not rewrite our portion of the North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA). This is partly pragmatic, since trade between the U.S. and Canada is huge, worth upwards of $540 billion in 2015. In fact, it's clear that the…

Canada can play hardball on softwood

Strong demand and reduced supply is pushing up the price of lumber

Canada can play hardball on softwoodFor the last half of the 20th century, one could easily and accurately predict conditions in the British Columbia economy using just one number. That number was U.S. housing starts. The dividing line was 1.6 million starts per year. At this level or higher, the softwood-lumber driven B.C. economy was doing very well, thank you.…