Canadian manufacturers hope for exemptions to latest Buy American provisions

Canadian manufacturers once again run the risk of being hit by US protectionism and the need to fight for crucial exemptions.

Canadian manufacturers once again run the risk of being hit by US protectionism and the need to fight for crucial exemptions.

The challenge comes after the Biden administration announced new procurement guidelines on Monday that require building materials purchased for federally funded infrastructure projects to be produced in the United States.

Dennis Darby, head of Canadian Manufacturers & Exporters, says Canada will have to work hard to secure exclusions and waivers to protect access to the US market, as it has done in previous challenges.

Key to these efforts will be to emphasize the integrated nature of economies, where materials already flow freely across the border, and how Canada is rarely able to undercut U.S. prices.

Darby says the US provisions are likely intended to be more targeted at countries like China, where there are concerns about subsidized production and the export of products at problematically low prices.

The Buy American rules, part of the US $1 trillion infrastructure package that was signed into law last November, allow for several scenarios in which the requirements could be waived, including if they are inconsistent with the public interest or if the materials are not produced. in sufficient quantities or of satisfactory quality on the internal market.

This report from The Canadian Press was first published on April 19, 2022.

The Canadian Press