“Earlier today, the U.S. Department of Commerce announced increased rates for the forestry companies participating in the second administrative review.

“Plain and simple: higher tariffs for our forestry companies is completely unacceptable.

“Affected Alberta companies will pay between 11.12 per cent and 19.54 per cent on future exports and will be assessed additional duties between 2.15 per cent and 14.92 per cent for exports that were made between Jan. 1, 2019, and today to account for the difference in rates.

“Alberta is home to a world-class forest sector and this has never been more evident than during the pandemic.

“The U.S. is a critical customer for us, with 91 per cent ($1.2 billion) of our softwood lumber exports going there. It’s estimated that $5.6 billion in softwood lumber duties has been collected from Canadian forestry companies since 2017.

“Any amount of duties unfairly targets our softwood lumber exports and these decreasing and then increasing rates create uncertainty on both sides of the border.

“We cannot lose sight of our ultimate goal to ensure Canadian softwood lumber is treated fairly and recognized for the benefits it creates for both countries.

“Alberta will continue to support Canada in its ongoing efforts to push for the free flow of trade to ensure prosperity for both nations and Alberta’s forest industry.”