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October 27, 2017 5:19 pm

Premier Responds to Federal Forestry Aid Package

Thursday, June 1, 2017 @ 1:58 PM

Prince George, B.C.- Premier Christy Clark has issued a statement in the wake of the Federal Government’s announcement of an $867 million dollar package to  aid communities and forestry workers  that may be hit by the Softwood Lumber trade dispute.

“We appreciate the leadership the Government of Canada has shown on softwood lumber. Today’s announcement is a result of the work put in by Minister James Carr and the provincial forest ministers on the Federal-Provincial Softwood Lumber Task Force. It demonstrates a firm commitment to Canada’s forest-dependent communities and workers, including the more than 60,000 British Columbians in more than 140 communities throughout our province.”

Clark says the Province will continue to work  with Ottawa towards achieving a negotiated settlement with the U.S,  but  that  litigation continues, ” Unfortunately, this process takes time, and workers and communities may feel the impact. The $867 million will help strengthen the forest economy through expanded funding for marketing and innovation, and provide support for workers, if needed.”

NDP leader, John Horgan,  who is  ready to step into the role of Premier  should the Liberals fail a confidence test in the legislature,  also welcomes the  Federal package “It’s a start” says Horgan  “I just want to make sure the Federal Government understands clearly that British Columbia is responsible for over 50% of the softwood lumber trade between Canada and the United States and we are fully  expecting that share of this package to come to British Columbia.”

Horgan  also says once he becomes Premier, he fully  intends to head to Washington to  represent B.C.’s interests in the dispute and that  he has full confidence in  David Emerson, B.C.’s Softwood Lumber Trade Envoy “We have already sent messages to him that we have full confidence in him.”



The liberals in Ottawa and the liberals in Victoria should have seen this coming. The softwood lumber agreement when signed in the mid 2000’s was only good for 7 years with a further two year extension. A similar aid package was rolled out in 2002. Still, the worst happened.

They DID see it coming! Because of the ongoing presidential election Washington indicated that it was neither interested nor willing to start any negotiations before it expired. It is easy to point fingers unfairly! They have used similar tactics in the past. It worked for them because we allowed it.

As usual the liberals sit on their hands when Canada needs leadership.

Two years ago they should have seen it coming

    And do just WHAT about it? The Canadian side would have to agree with the concerns the American side has, and we won’t do that. So where is there any onus on the American side to negotiate a new deal when their concerns are still not going to be dealt with? Obviously, we feel that having tariffs imposed is a lesser detriment than having to implement the kind of changes the Americans want in any new SLA. Since it’s the largest companies that seem to suffer least from duties on softwood, and the smaller, independent ones that run the risk of being put under, we might want to ask ourselves whether that result may be just what’s intended?

Can’t do anything about it as the US was bound by trade agreement timeline. Once it passed they hit Canada with the duties. It would have happened no matter who was elected president. Instead of reacting with outrage over the duties, they already had the framework from the last set of disputes to get their ducks in a row and submit. All of this should have been in the prep stage.

On the part of the feds that is.

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