United Steelworkers Canada has urged the Canadian government to ensure that only Made in Canada steel is used in the country. USW Western Canada Director Mr Stephen Hunt said “Thousands of Steelworkers were laid off in 2020 not due to the COVID-19 pandemic, but due to the policies of governments across Canada. It’s time that we demand all levels of government adopt Buy Canadian policies to protect Canadian jobs.”
He said “Steel is being illegally dumped in Canada to lower its price. Governments at all levels are failing Canadian workers by allowing major public and private sector projects to import offshore steel and pre fabricated parts, all at the expense of Canadian manufacturers and workers. I find it deeply concerning that government procurement policies for major construction projects like the new Pattullo Bridge in Surrey, the Kitimat LNG project, replacement lines for SaskEnergy and the Northern Alberta TC Energy project do not prioritize the use of Canadian steel. It's disturbing to see that we have bridges, pipelines and other important infrastructure projects being built with foreign imported steel. We can and must do better and that starts with buying local.”
He urged “To have a strong economic recovery plan for 2021, governments will need to commit to investing in creating new jobs and building new infrastructure projects. When those projects are being planned and sent for procurement, let’s remember to Buy Canadian.”
The Canadian steel industry employs 23,000 people directly and another 100,000 indirectly.