TORONTO, April 4, 2018 /CNW/ - The United Steelworkers (USW) is calling for stronger and more decisive action from the federal government to defend Canadian producers and workers from a flood of dumped foreign steel and aluminum.
The Liberal government's recently announced plans fall short of the immediate measures that are needed to combat the expected increase of illegally subsidized, unfairly priced steel and aluminum from China and other overseas producers, said USW Canadian Director Ken Neumann.
"The government must immediately do more to address the impending surge of illegal imports that will no doubt invade our market in coming months," said Neumann.
Canada is expected to become a greater dumping ground for foreign products as a result of new U.S. tariffs imposed on unfairly priced steel and aluminum from overseas producers.
"The federal government must increase the resources to the Canada Border Services Agency to ensure that Canada can investigate and respond to increased dumping of products into the Canadian market," Neumann said.
The government must be able to act more quickly and effectively to prevent so-called "circumvention" or "transshipment" of foreign steel and aluminum that is first dumped into Canada and then diverted to the U.S. market – and vice-versa, Neumann said.
The federal government also must finally grant trade unions – as representatives of steel and aluminum workers across the country – the right to file trade complaints to help combat illegal dumping, Neumann said. Such rights have proven effective in the U.S. for many years, he noted.
"As part of strengthening the approach to enforcement, unions must be given the right to file trade complaints under the Special Import Measures Act (SIMA), a right that has existed in the United States for decades," he said.
"The filing of trade cases by our union in the United States has helped respond to a continuing attack on that market by unfair trading entities."
The Canadian government must aggressively lobby the U.S. administration to secure a permanent exemption from U.S. tariffs for Canadian steel and aluminum, Neumann said. Canada also must be prepared to initiate safeguard actions at the World Trade Organization to defend domestic steel and aluminum producers and workers, he added.
The USW is calling on the Canadian and U.S. governments to work together to protect the integrated North American supply chain from cheap imports from China and other bad actors.
"Canada should signal to the United States that we will not allow dumping and other illegal and unfair trading practices to undermine our markets," Neumann said.
SOURCE United Steelworkers (USW)
For further information: Ken Neumann, USW National Director, 416-544-5951; Bob Gallagher, USW Communications, 416-544-5966, 416-434-2221, [email protected]