Harper says disappointed with U.S. lumber duty

Wed Apr 8, 2009 1:38pm EDT
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OTTAWA (Reuters) - Canadian Prime Minister Stephen Harper said on Wednesday he was disappointed with a U.S. decision to impose a duty on imports of some Canadian softwood lumber.

"Obviously we were very disappointed, first of all disappointed with the tribunal decision, also disappointed with the decision of the government of the United States to impose a duty," Harper told reporters in a televised news conference.

An international arbitration tribunal ruled in February that Canada was in violation of a bilateral softwood lumber agreement and Ottawa offered last week to remedy its breach with a payment of C$46.7 million ($37.7 million). The United States government has rejected that remedy and on Tuesday said it would impose a 10 percent duty on some lumber imports.

($1=$1.23 Canadian)

(Reporting by Louise Egan; editing by Peter Galloway)