U.S. Groups Launch Campaign Against Tax On Canadian Lumber

By Agence France-Presse A group of U.S. importers and retailers is launching a media campaign against U.S. plans to impose a 29% tax on Canadian softwood lumber. The companies supporting the ad campaign include Weyerhaeuser Co., Bowater Inc. and Pope and Talbot Inc. -- U.S. forestry firms that have activities in Canada -- as well as retailers such as The Home Depot Inc. and Lowe's Cos. Inc., according to a statement by Weyerhaeuser. The ad campaign will use the slogan "Friends and allies for more than 100 years. Why not now for Lumber?" It is to be launched April 24 in key print media in the U.S. and Canada, a week ahead of the U.S. International Trade Commission's final determination in the softwood dispute. "These duties will no doubt hurt workers and companies in both countries. But just as importantly, they will hurt the millions of consumers who want a warm, secure home built from these products," the companies say in their ads. "We believe that as good friends, Canada and the U.S. can only resolve their differences through good-faith negotiations that will lead to a long-term solution that is fair to both countries." Washington claims -- and Ottawa denies -- that some Canadian provinces unfairly subsidize softwood production. Copyright Agence France-Presse, 2002

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