OTTAWA – Compelling evidence from Canadian union members is being cited as a key factor in a federal government ruling that defends domestic manufacturing jobs and imposes anti-dumping duties on foreign steel.
Following a months-long investigation, the Canadian International Trade Tribunal (CITT) has imposed anti-dumping duties on various types of carbon and alloy steel pipe imported from South Korea.
The CITT cited evidence from members of the United Steelworkers (USW) who testified about the impact of illegal dumping on Canadian jobs, communities and the future of domestic steel manufacturing.
The tribunal also suggested Canadian unions have an important role to play in government investigations into harmful trade practices such as steel dumping.
“Four witnesses from the USW testified at the hearing to the significant reductions in employment and wages that severely impacted members of the USW,” states the CITT ruling on South Korean dumping of steel pipe.
“Their testimonies expanded on the evidence of the domestic industry as to the impact of the subject goods on employment and put a human face on many of the harms identified by the domestic industry. The intervention of the USW in this proceeding illustrates the important and useful role that unions can play in injury inquiries.”
The CITT heard evidence from Mike Day, president of USW Local 5890 representing employees at the Evraz pipe-making operations in Regina; Cody Alexander, president of USW Local 9548 representing employees at Tenaris Algoma Tubes in Sault Ste. Marie, Ont.; and Robert Gosse, president of USW Local 7226 representing workers at the Tenaris Prudential facilities in Calgary.
Union members testified about plant shutdowns, significant job cuts, adverse effects on families from the loss of benefits and pension security, as well as productivity issues arising from the permanent loss of skilled workers.
The evidence provided by union members helped to prove that dumping of South Korean steel pipe “negatively impacted employment levels, wages and productivity,” the CITT ruling states.
The anti-dumping duties imposed by the CITT will be in place for five years and will be subject to possible adjustment on an annual basis.