WASHINGTON, D.C. – Following his letter to the Obama Administration, U.S. Sen. Sherrod Brown (D-OH) has called on the Canadian government to end illegal trade subsidies that threaten cement jobs in Paulding County. Brown has previously called on the Obama Administration to examine Canada’s trade practices and ensure they are complying with international trade law.
“These unfair subsidies threaten Ohio manufacturing and jobs in Paulding County,” Brown said. “It’s simply unacceptable that other countries cherry pick which trade rules they choose to follow. That’s why I’ll continue fighting for workers in Paulding County – and throughout the U.S. – to ensure American workers have a fair shot.”
The Canadian federal government and the Province of Quebec are seeking to offer a nearly half billion dollar financial package to McInnis Cement to help its startup in Port-Daniel-Gascons, Quebec. The size and nature of these subsidies could violate Canada’s World Trade Organization (WTO) obligations and give its cement industry an unfair advantage in the U.S. market. That is why Brown is calling for the Quebec government to rescind these subsidies and allow Paulding County’s workers and businesses to compete on a level playing field.
In July, Brown urged United States Trade Representative (USTR) Michael Froman to crack down on the subsidies package, which would specifically target the U.S. market, hurting the ability of local manufacturers to compete. U.S. cement companies would be affected, including Lafarge North America, which has a plant in Paulding.
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