VANCOUVER, B.C. — B.C. Premier Gordon Campbell was a keynote speaker at the Truck Loggers Convention in Vancouver this weekend, and he suggested loggers seek out new markets for their products.
Campbell told the delegates, “That this dispute has made it irrevocably clear to all of us that we have to broaden our (lumber) market reach. We can’t be solely dependant on the U.S. market for access any longer.”
Campbell vowed that the B.C. Liberals are working hard on opening up the lumber market in Asia, particularly in China.
“China is an enormous marketing opportunity for us in B.C.,” says Campbell. “Their economy grew at seven per cent last year, but more importantly, their residential housing was up by 29 per cent. If we can access that market as soon as possible I think everyone in B.C. will benefit.”
If the B.C. forestry industry is successful in penetrating the Asian markets, truckers can probably count on more East-West travel than the traditional route down into the U.S.
Campbell also took the opportunity to assure the independent loggers that there should soon by some progress in the softwood lumber dispute.
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