Canada files almost 200 trade complaints against US

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"Canada's claims are unfounded and could only lower USA confidence that Canada is committed to mutually beneficial trade". "Canada's complaint is bad for Canada". It also accuses the United States of using a trade-panel voting system that's biased against foreigners.

In the 32-page complaint, Canada detailed areas where they argue that the United States' tariff investigations and reviews have been inconsistent with its obligations under several WTO agreements.

The 32-page filing not only accuses the US of improperly imposing duties on Canadian products but also on those of other trading partners, including Brazil, China, EU and India.

The announcement of the case comes ahead of the January 23 start of the next round of trade talks on the North American Free Trade Agreement in Montreal. This goes for trade negotiations with China, with Comprehensive Progressive Trans-Pacific Partnership parties, and with the United States.

"Canada is acting against its own workers' and businesses' interests", he said.

However, Canada's strategy is "particularly unwise", Warner told Xinhua. One of the United States' demands in the NAFTA renegotiation is chapter 19's elimination.

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Canada has launched a wide-ranging trade dispute against the United States, challenging Washington's use of anti-dumping and anti-subsidy duties, according to a World Trade Organization filing dated December 20 and published Wednesday.

Across the negotiating table, the United States argues that chapter 19 is unnecessary because the WTO exists, (it did not when NAFTA came into force) and because the United States system is not biased in favour of US firms.

Canada-U.S. trade lawyer Mark Warner said the complaints might have some merit, and Canada is well within its rights to complain to the WTO.

"These rates tabled lby the USA on uncoated groundwood paper represent the third action that stands to hurt hard working men and women in our mill communities across Canada", says Derek Nighbor, CEO, Forest Products Association of Canada.

The reason Canada did this, says Boscariol, is in large part because of the softwood lumber, but by taking on the entire US trade remedies system, Canada is taking the position that the USA, as our most important customer, must be held to WTO rules when it imposes these anti-dumping and countervailing measures that hamper free trade.

Ideally, Canada would want to keep both chapter 19 and the United States' commitment to the WTO, since it gives it more ammunition in disputes. The disputes over paper, lumber, aerospace, and now trade in general are occurring just as the countries prepare to meet in Montreal later this month for a potentially pivotal round of NAFTA negotiations.

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