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Union Praises Trade Commission Finding for Coated Sheet Paper Dumping

Press release from the issuing company

Dec 19, 2006 -- News From USW: Leo W. Gerard, International President of the United Steelworkers (USW), said last Friday’s preliminary finding by the U.S. International Trade Commission (ITC) of injury to the industry producing coated free sheet paper is an important first step in safeguarding American jobs from unfair foreign competition. “Our paper workers are pleased with the ITC’s initial finding that coated free sheet paper from Indonesia, China and South Korea is harming American jobs and the paper industry,” Gerard said. He expects the next investigative phase by the U.S. Commerce Department will establish that foreign producers are dumping and foreign governments are subsidizing expanded paper-making capacity. Tom Caldwell, a sheeter operator and President of USW Local 676 representing 1,100 workers at the Luke Paper of NewPage Corp., testified at the ITC’s November hearing that 130 jobs are being eliminated due to unfair imports. “The Luke mill is the largest private employer in Allegheny County (MD),” he said. “It’s going to be very difficult for our members who are laid off to find new jobs in the area.” USW-represented workers producing coated free sheet paper are employed at the following mills: Appleton Coated, Combined Locks, WI.; Bowater Co., Catawba, SC.; Glatfelter Co., Spring Grove, PA.; International Paper Corp., Courtland, AL.; NewPage Corp., Wickliffe, KY., Rumford, ME., Luke, MD., and Escanaba, MI.; Sappi Fine Paper, Skowhegan, ME., Muskegon, MI., and Cloquet, MN; Smart Papers Co., Hamilton, OH.; Stora Enso, Kimberly and Wisconsin Rapids, WI. ; and Wausau Paper Co., Jay, ME. Gerard says, “The Commerce Department took an important first step in initiating a countervailing duty case to examine Chinese subsidies. We believe our government must enforce the anti-subsidy laws with all countries. Exempting China from the application of U.S. countervailing duties would make a mockery of our trade laws.” Coated free sheet paper is used in many high-end commercial printing applications. End uses include annual reports, coffee table books, magazines and brochures. The USW represents more than 275,000 workers in the paper and forestry products industries.