·  CBC Up North

USW’s Leo Gerard on Softwood and Unfair Trade

USW International President Leo W. Gerard spoke to CBC Sudbury’s Jason Turnbull about softwood lumber, unfair steel trade and NAFTA.

 “Our union has been very aggressive in both Canada and the States tackling unfair trade in steel.”

“The fact of the matter is that on softwood lumber, he’s just wrong. U.S. softwood is working at 100% capacity; it’s at the highest price it’s ever been in 20 years. In order to sustain a tariff, you’ve got to be able to demonstrate injury. If you don’t want Canadian lumber, you shouldn’t get Canadian raw logs to make lumber out of.”

“To tell you the truth about softwood – it’s not about lumber … Canada’s timberlands are owned by the Crown – they’re provincially or federally owned. In the U.S. they’re all privately owned … That forest land has to be carried on your books as an asset … so if I can raise the price of that asset, then the value on my books goes (up). It has nothing to do with how much lumber is getting into the country, it has to do with a bunch of greedy transnational companies, some of which are Canadian, operating on both sides of the border.”

“I think our objective is to work with our members in both countries … we’re not going to let him [Trump] screw our members on either side of the border.”

– Leo W. Gerard

Listen here: CBC’s Up North Sudbury show

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