After getting Obama to slap a tariff on tires, now labour unions are going after paper. After all, they’re really not in favour of free trade in any respect, so why would they stop after just one victory.
Specifically, the United Steelworkers say that China and Indonesia are dumping underpriced, shiny, coated-paper onto our shoars, the likes of which is used in brochures in such. WSJ notes the clever coincidence of putting out this latest complaint on the eve of the G-20 summit, which will be tense enough, though the union says that wasn’t the idea.
The Steelworkers represent about 6,000 hourly workers at paper mills in nine states operated by the three companies that joined in the complaint. The filings claim that imports of coated paper grew nearly 40% in the first six months of 2009 — to 185,422 tons — compared with the same period last year; shipments by domestic producers, at the same time, were estimated to have fallen by about 38%.
China and Indonesia are thought to account for nearly 30% of the U.S. market for coated paper in the first half of 2009, nearly double their share from the first half of 2008. Total U.S. sales for coated paper in 2008 were estimated at $1.8 billion.