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Trade inquiry launched over mill deal

The U.S. trade representative has started an inquiry under the North American free-trade agreement to determine if the Nova Scotia government has offered improper subsidies to a Cape Breton paper mill.

October 4, 2012  By  John Tenpenny

Acording to the Canadian Press, Ron Kirk, in a letter released Thursday by Maine congressman Mike Michaud, said reports about the province’s $124-million financial aid package for the Port Hawkesbury Paper mill have raised “troubling questions” about potential injury to U.S. businesses.

Mr. Kirk also said he will be seeking information from the Canadian government, saying the United States plans to raise the matter at meetings this month at the World Trade Organization.

Mr. Michaud issued a statement saying the Cape Breton deal, struck last month, could have a significant impact on U.S. paper mills and the small businesses they support.

Nova Scotia Premier Darrell Dexter says the province obtained legal advice regarding a potential NAFTA challenge before the deal was struck.


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