The United States government has a new trade beef with Canada


The United States government has a new trade beef with Canada: claims that some pipe products are being dumped on the U.S. market at artificially low prices.

Canada is one of six countries named in a new anti-dumping and countervailing duty probe announced Tuesday by U.S. Commerce Secretary Wilbur Ross.

In a statement, Ross said the trade investigation will look into whether imports of large-diameter welded pipe from Canada, China, Greece, India, Korea, and Turkey are being dumped in the United States, and if foreign producers are getting unfair subsidies. If it finds the imports are hurting its domestic producers, the U.S. could imposed duties.

The U.S. launched the probe after five U.S. companies — American Cast Iron Pipe Company of Birmingham, Ala., Berg Steel Pipe Corp. of Panama City, Fla., Dura-Bond Industries of Steelton, Pa., Skyline Steel of Parsippany, N.J., and Stupp Corporation of Baton Rouge, La. — filed petitions.

In the anti-dumping probe, the U.S. Commerce Department said it will determine if imports of large-diameter welded pipe from Canada, Greece, China, India, Korea and Turkey are being dumped in the U.S. market at less than fair value. The countervailing probe will investigate if imports into the U.S. of products from China, India, Korea and Turkey are getting government subsidies.

The U.S. Commerce Department said Canada shipped about $66 million worth of the pipe products to the United States in 2016.

“With an 81 per cent increase in trade cases initiated since President Trump took office, this administration has made it clear that we will vigorously administer anti-dumping and countervailing duty laws,” said Ross.

Donald Trump complaint

News of the probe comes a day after Trump complained about Canadian trade practices.

“Canada does not treat us right in terms of the farming and the crossing the borders,” Trump said.

“We cannot continue to be taken advantage of by other countries.”

Talking with press reporters Monday, Trump likewise raised the recommendation of some kind of charge tax on some imports into the United States. Trump has actually mentioned an import tax in the past, and stated the other day that more information might be coming today.

“We are going to charge countries outside of our country — countries that take advantage of the United States,” Trump said.

The new case of large-diameter welded pipe imports is just latest source of trade friction between Canada and the United States.

The two countries are sparring over duties on U.S. imports of Canada softwood lumber — a case that Canada has taken to the WTO.

In addition, the U.S. government moved last year to put duties on U.S. imports of Bombardier’s C Series aircraft.

A U.S. trade body rejected the duties, finding that no U.S. producer suffered harm from government assistance provided to Bombardier.

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