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Monday, March 30, 2015


Intergovernmental and Aboriginal Affairs Minister Berny Wiens,

Agriculture and Food Minister Eric Upshall and Justice Minister John

Nilson today responded to a U.S. preliminary decision not to impose a

countervailing duty against imports of Canadian cattle by resolving to

continue to defend against this unfair trade action.

The decision not to impose a duty was announced today by the United

States Department of Commerce in the subsidies/countervail case

initiated by the Ranchers-Cattlemen's Action Legal Fund (R-CALF), a

U.S. group of cattle producers. R-CALF members claim that the import

of unfairly subsidized Canadian cattle is depressing American prices.

In addition to defending against this action brought under U.S. law,

Saskatchewan continues to work with the federal government in its

proceedings at the World Trade Organization. These proceedings

question whether the U.S. had sufficient grounds to initiate this

action in response to allegations by a small organization such as


"Saskatchewan has known all along that we have not been unfairly

subsidising our cattle producers," Wiens said. "As the proceedings

progress, we will continue to defend against this action by the United

States government against our cattle producers."

Upshall said, "American and Canadian cattle producers have much

in common and the differences this action fosters will benefit no

one. We realise that this preliminary ruling is not the end of

the process and that a final decision is yet to come. We are

however encouraged that the Department of Commerce will continue

to agree with us that the R-CALF claims have no merit. In the

meantime our concern remains the potential effect these kinds of

actions could have on Saskatchewan cattle producers."

Nilson said, "We continue to retain U.S. legal counsel to assist

in defending our position in Washington. We have instructed them

to vigorously defend this action and to take all available steps

to show the U.S. that the R-CALF action should be dismissed. We

will continue to work with Canada and other provinces to defend

against this action."

Saskatchewan is also working with U.S. border states to improve

trade relationships. Wiens recently led a delegation of

officials to Montana to discuss a range of issues of mutual

concern. Wiens will be travelling to North Dakota this week with

the same objectives.

This preliminary decision is an early step in a longer legal

process which is investigating whether Canadian cattle are being

exported with unfair subsidies and also whether they are being

dumped in the U.S. market. Final decisions in both the

countervail and dumping cases are not expected to be made until

January 2000.

Canadian cattle exports currently amount to less than 5 per cent

of the total U.S. market for cattle.


For more information, contact:

Robert Perrin

Intergovernmental and

Aboriginal Affairs


Phone: (306) 787-2171

Hal Cushon

Agriculture and Food


Phone: (306) 787-5961
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