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November 22, 2005
  Contact: Meredith Williams/Areaka Foye-McFadden
(202) 482-3809

NAFTA Panel Decision: Fifth Remand Determination
Countervailing Duty Investigation on Softwood Lumber from Canada

Today the Department filed its Fifth Remand Determination implementing the NAFTA Panel's instructions in the countervailing duty investigation on softwood lumber with respect to log seller profit. Although the Department does not agree with the Panel's rationale, the Department has complied with the Panel=s instructions and calculated a country-wide subsidy rate of 0.80 percent, which is de minimis.

"We have serious concerns about the panel's decision. However, consistent with our NAFTA obligations, we have complied with the panel's instructions," said Commerce Secretary Carlos M. Gutierrez. "We will continue to enforce our trade laws to ensure that U.S. industry receives relief from unfair imports and we are reviewing all options to do so. We believe that only a durable, negotiated resolution will resolve this dispute permanently."

The filing of this remand has no immediate effect on the cash deposit and assessment rates. Cash deposits will continue to be required at the rates currently in place, with an average combined AD/CVD duty of 20.15 percent.

Next Steps:
Under NAFTA procedures, there will be a briefing schedule to allow parties to comment on the Department's remand determination. This would occur over the next 25 - 45 days. The Panel will then either issue its decision to affirm the Department's determination, or issue new instructions.

The Department is currently conducting the second and third administrative reviews of the CVD order. The second administrative review will determine the net countervailing duty rate at which all covered entries entered from April 1, 2003 through March 31, 2004 will be assessed and the third administrative review covers entries from April 1, 2004 through March 31, 2005. In the preliminary results of the second review, published on June 7, 2005, the Department calculated a CVD rate of 8.18 percent. The deadline for the completion of the final results of the second administrative review is December 5, 2005. Publication of the final results of the second administrative review will also change the CVD cash deposit rate. The deadline for issuance of the preliminary results of the third administrative review is January 31, 2006




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