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Interfor says it's shipping more lumber from Canada after China tariffs on U.S.

Logs are seen in an aerial view stacked at the Interfor sawmill, in Grand Forks, B.C., on May 12, 2018. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Darryl Dyck

VANCOUVER — Interfor Corp. says the company has markedly increased lumber shipments from Canada to China as a result of tariffs imposed on its U.S. production.

Barton Bender, vice-president of sales, told a conference call with financial analysts, that Interfor has tried to keep overall lumber shipments to the country constant after China retaliated to U.S. tariffs with its own import tax of up to 25 per cent on some goods.

Bender says it has increased exports from Canada to China despite shipping costs that are roughly 50 per cent higher than from the Southern U.S.

Interfor, along with other Canadian forestry companies, have invested in U.S. lumber production in recent years as they faced log supply issues in B.C. and softwood tariffs on exports to the U.S.

The industry has been on a rollercoaster of prices in the past year as they spiked to record highs last summer before plummeting in the fourth quarter in part over U.S. housing market concerns.

Interfor says 2018 was the company best financial year in its history, despite a fourth-quarter loss of $13.2 million or 19 cents per share.

 

Companies in this story: (TSX:IFP)

 

The Canadian Press