We are stunned that a single U.S. mill in Longview, WA (NORPAC) has been able to manipulate the trade laws to their gain, while potentially wreaking financial havoc on newspapers and other commercial publishers across the country. On January 9, in response to NORPAC’s petition, the Department of Commerce issued a “preliminary” decision to impose countervailing duties on Canadian imports of uncoated groundwood paper. This decision and its associated duties likely will lead to job losses in U.S. publishing, commercial printing and paper industries.
NORPAC petitions do not reflect the views of the domestic paper industry and demonstrate a lack of understanding of the market. The well-documented decline in the U.S. newsprint market is not due to unfair trade, but to a decade-long shift from print to digital distribution of news and information. Now, we will all literally pay for one manufacturer’s manipulation of our country’s trade laws.
These tariffs will saddle publishers with additional costs that will hasten the newspaper industry’s shift to digital and, consequentially, accelerate the decline in both the printed newspaper and newsprint industries. There will be no winners.
We oppose the NORPAC petitions and these tariffs, and we will take every possible measure to fight this misguided case as it moves through the investigation process at the Department of Commerce and International Trade Commission.
David Chavern is former President & CEO of the News/Media Alliance. Chavern has 30 years of experience in executive strategic and operational roles. Prior to the Alliance, he completed a decade-long tenure at the U.S. Chamber of Commerce.