B.C. builders protest rebar tariffs that could raise prices 41 per cent
The B.C. government and the province's builders are protesting a Canada-wide tariff on Asian rebar imports. Shipping costs from domestic rebar producers make Canadian product unaffordable, they claim.
By Steve Payne
You might not be losing any sleep at night over the price of rebar in your home province, but B.C. builders who use Asian rebar to save money are unhappy about a new rebar tariff decision. In concrete structures, rebar can account for 6 to 10 per cent of construction costs.
The decision by the Canada International Trade Tribunal to levy a tariff of up to 41 per cent on rebar coming into Canada from China, South Korea and Taiwan, unfairly punishes B.C. builders, they say.
B.C. builders are hurt by shipping costs when they try to buy Canadian-made rebar, they argue. A tariff that might make sense elsewhere in Canada is unfair to Pacific Rim builders like those in B.C.
The protest is being led by the B.C. government and the International Contractors and Businesses Association of B.C. (ICBA).
The ICBA says that, if the tariff goes ahead, it could add up to $10,000 to the cost of constructing a 2-bedroom condo in Vancouver.