2006 Softwood Lumber Agreement Expiry

As first published in your Madison’s Lumber Reporter September 25, 2014, the 2006 Canada-US Softwood Lumber Agreement expires in a year. So far the apparent position of Canada is simply to renew as is, even though the US Lumber Coalition has already said it has grave concerns about key points of the Agreement and does not support a simple renewal:

SLA Agreement Expires October 2015

“A simple extension won’t provide a platform for a stable agreement moving forward,” said Zoltan van Heyningen, Coalition representative and speaker at the FEA conference, during a phone interview with Madison’s Tuesday. There are three main issues the Coalition membership has with the current SLA:
• there has been a dramatic shift in North American log prices due to market forces since the Agreement was signed in 2006;
• continued concern over the exit ramp and market conditions in Quebec; and,
• enforceability of the SLA in light of the recent grade 4 decision.”

This weekend an article in the Financial Post delved further into this important issue:

The granddaddy of all Canadian-U.S. trade disputes is about to rear its ugly head again


“The preponderance of the betting is that there won’t be an extension,” said Paul Lalonde, a trade lawyer with Dentons Canada LLP in Toronto. “If there is to be a new deal, it will be on different terms. There’s just too much unhappiness with the deal on the U.S. side. … No one can see a political dynamic in which the deal as it is now could be continued.”