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Cement Association upset carbon tax not addressed in B.C. budget

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February 21, 2014 by STAFF REPORT

The Cement Association of Canada (CAC) is disappointed with the B.C. provincial government’s decision not to change how the carbon tax is applied to the cement sector in its 2014 budget.

The B.C. cement industry has traditionally provided more than 2,000 family supporting jobs across the province. However only domestically manufactured cement pays the carbon tax under the current structure, while imported cement coming from the U.S. and Asia is exempt.

According to the CAC, local producers have lost nearly a third of the market share to imports since the inception of the carbon tax in 2008. B.C. cement facilities are now running at 65 per cent capacity, compared to five years ago when they were running at near full capacity.

Michael McSweeney, CAC’s president and CEO, said the way the carbon tax is currently structured is jeopardizing the sustainability of B.C.’s cement industry.

“That the government of B.C. has chosen to not correct the critical deficiency of the carbon tax after having acknowledged that it is not working is very disappointing,” he said. “We have been working with government officials to find a solution for six years, and we will continue to look for opportunities for further discussions.”

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