"We will continue to work with our forest industry, provinces and territories, and communities across Canada to defend this vital sector against unfair and unwarranted USA trade measures and practices".
The American government's imposition of duties on exports of Canadian newsprint will only accelerate the transition from print to digital and threaten thousands of USA jobs, says North America's largest newsprint producer.
Catalyst is a private company, having been bought by a private entity and delisted from the Toronto Stock Exchange past year, so Hodgins wouldn't disclose how much of its newsprint it ships to the U.S.
A petition by a paper maker in Washington state has set off alarm bells at newspapers and printing plants across the country whose leaders say the outcome could drastically increase newsprint costs, adding more financial pressure to an industry already struggling with the drain of advertising and subscription revenue in recent years.
Higgins, joined by fellow U.S. Rep. Elise Stefanik, R-Willsboro, expressed concern this week that the measure will lead to added costs for consumers and potential job cuts at large and small newspaper and book publishing operations across NY state and the nation. This type of paper is used for standard newsprint, bright newsprint, book publishing and other purposes. Even if the tariff was only 10 percent, he said, it would represent a seven-figure cost for the company that was unbudgeted and unanticipated.
More than 1,100 small and mid-sized newspapers - members of the alliance - signed a letter in December to warn Commerce Secretary Wilbur Ross that punitive duties on Canadian newsprint would have a devastating impact.
"As for our customers, many can barely pay their printing bills now", the letter said. The Daily News is printed on paper manufactured at Norpac. But industry officials said that's due primarily to the shift from print to digital media consumption, not to unfair trade practices.
The U.S. International Trade Commission will rule on the tariffs in the summer.
Canada is the largest exporter of newsprint in the world, dominated by Resolute Forest Products, Kruger and Catalyst Paper Corp.
It is the same argument made regarding Canada's softwood industry, which led to the imposition of both countervailing and anti-dumping duties on most Canadian softwood exports to the United States.
"This additional cost resulting from these tariffs will be significant, and yes, they will directly impact us locally here in Jacksonville, Florida, just like any other local newspaper in America", Nusbaum said.
The move comes in response to a petition filed in August in which the Longview papermaker alleged that Canadian paper manufacturers hold an unfair advantage over domestic producers. A week after filing the petitions in August, the company announced that it would shut down one of its three paper machines in October, resulting in an undetermined number of layoffs and reducing the plant's capacity by almost one-third to 540,000 tons per year.
"Manufacturers are strong proponents of free and fair trade and are concerned that this new tariff barrier will affect Canada's trading relationship with its most important partner, the United States", he said, adding that the duties will also drive up the prices of newsprint up in the USA, hurting American consumers.