OTTAWA Feb 27 Canada said on Monday it has
reduced anti-dumping duties on U.S. drywall imports being used
in Western Canada following criticism that the cost of the
material was hampering recovery efforts in northern Alberta
after last year's wildfires.
An official Canadian trade panel said last month that U.S.
firms had dumped drywall in Canada, but that maintaining duties
of up to 276.5 percent would harm businesses, consumers and the
country's trade interests.
The Finance Department said it was reducing minimum import
prices, which are used to calculate duties, by 32.17 percent.
The new duty level took effect Feb. 24 and will be reviewed
again in a year.
Canadian construction firms have said tariffs on U.S drywall
make it more expensive to build homes out of the material, also
known as gypsum board, and are slowing recovery efforts in the
Alberta town of Fort McMurray, which was ravaged by a wildfire
The government will also put about C$12 million ($9.16
million) in duties it has collected in recent months toward
financial relief for Fort McMurray residents that are rebuilding
their homes, as well as builders and contractors that have been
hurt by the higher drywall costs.
($1 = 1.3098 Canadian dollars)
(Reporting by Leah Schnurr; Editing by Alan Crosby)