Looks like all this talk of softwood brinksmanship may turn out to be unnecessary. The CEOs of two of B.C.’s largest forestry companies, with enough combined clout (by virtue of their outstanding lawsuits against the U.S.) to kill the deal have spoken out against the proposed agreement for the first time.
They indicated the deal is unacceptable in its current form and in need of change. They haven’t said they’ll kill the deal yet, but with PM Stephen "accountability" Harper steadfastly refusing to even think about any changes, it’s not looking good.
There is one big forest company in the province supportive of the sellout though. Interestingly it’s the company that has its former CEO in the Harper cabinet, and still collecting a company pension. He’s also the guy that negotiated the billion dollar sellout. Who is he? Why he’s David Emerson, of course.
Small world indeed.
SOFTWOOD LUMBER : West Fraser Timber and Interfor say they want Ottawa's deal changed
Gordon Hamilton, Vancouver Sun
Published: Saturday, July 29, 2006
Two of British Columbia's leading forest industry CEOs with enough clout to kill the proposed softwood lumber deal said Friday they don't like the agreement Prime Minister Stephen Harper intends to introduce in the House of Commons in September.
Hank Ketcham, CEO of West Fraser Timber, and Duncan Davies, CEO of Interfor, both said the agreement before Parliament is lacking and they are attempting to have it changed. They refused to say whether they would go as far as exercising the veto they have.
The statements mark the first time industry leaders with enough exporting clout to end the deal have spoken out. Both CEOs made the comments in separate conference calls with investors.