Province calls meeting to protect Catalyst Paper and paper export industry

The provincial government met with Richmond-based Catalyst Paper and community stakeholders from across the province on Thursday, to brainstorm protections against U.S. duties on the company’s exports.

"These duties are unfair, especially to the people, families and communities who make their livelihood in this industry," said Premier John Horgan in a press release. "We're listening to our industry partners, community stakeholders, and working alongside our federal colleagues to support the forestry and newsprint industry and do everything we can to ease the impact of these duties."

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Horgan invited Green Party leader Andrew Weaver, opposition leader Andrew Wilkinson, representatives from Catalyst, MLAs, mayors and union representatives to join in the discussion. The roundtable was the latest initiative to overturn the tariff, following two teleconference consultations with federal officials in Ottawa and at Canada's embassy in Washington.

"I want these workers, their families, and their communities to know we are standing shoulder to shoulder, fighting for their jobs and their livelihoods," said Bruce Ralston, minister of jobs, trade and technology.

"Catalyst Paper supports thousands of jobs on B.C.'s coast, and that's why we need to work closely with all of our partners, including the federal government to ensure this issue remains a priority."

In March, the U.S. Department of Commerce imposed an anti-dumping duty of 22.16 per cent on Catalyst Paper’s newsprint exports to the U.S.

Catalyst Paper is B.C.’s only producer of newsprint and has mills in Croft, Port Alberni and Powell River.

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