Washington (August 29, 2018) – Senator Edward J. Markey (D-Mass.) released the following statement after the International Trade Commission (ITC) today voted unanimously to reversing tariffs on Canadian newsprint. The tariff would have impacted the entire newspaper industry, including the 170,000 workers it employs. Newspapers in Massachusetts and throughout the New England region import their newsprint from Canada because U.S. mills do not operate there. Without local production capabilities, the proposed tariffs would have raised the costs of production for Massachusetts’s local newspapers. The Department of Commerce had recently upheld the tariffs and, though they revised them to slightly lower levels, the tariffs still would have been unsustainable for newspapers, other printers and publishers and printers.
“The ITC made the right call in reversing these harmful tariffs that would have eviscerated local newspapers,” said Senator Markey. “In many cities and towns, local papers are the only source of community news. Local newspapers are where municipal governments post announcements, where proud parents announce graduations, and where we celebrate the events that bind us neighbors and friends. Unfortunately, the damage to newspapers from preliminary tariffs imposed by the Department of Commerce since January has already been done. I hope today’s ITC reversal will restore stability to the market and that publishers will see a full recovery. Our democracy depends on it.”
Earlier this month, Senator Markey wrote to the ITC, calling on the Commission to take into account the harm the newsprint tariffs would cause, including loss of jobs, local news coverage, and the closing of newspaper in Massachusetts and across the country.