Orbit Brokers

A Canadian Approach To Protectionism: SIMA And What It Can Do For You

The time has finally come. After much debate about how the first in-person meeting between Prime Minister Trudeau and his U.S. counterpart President Trump would go, we finally have a glimpse into the new dynamic relationship that will hopefully prevail. The two discussed trade, especially NAFTA, and by the sounds of it, the trade relationship between both countries won’t seem to wane all that much. From the initial rhetoric we heard south of the border, President Trump aimed to take protectionist measures to protect their economy. That’s certainly one way to go about things, but Canada has a much different approach to protecting our trade industry, in the name SIMA.

The Special Import Measures Act (SIMA) protects your products in two ways. First, they are protected from being harmed by others selling the same goods at lower prices. This practice is called dumping. In addition, these other importers can benefit from foreign government financial assistance (such as preferential loans, grants and tax incentives). This practice is known as subsidizing.

Fortunately, SIMA was designed primarily to combat these two unsavory practices and give you the opportunity to compete fairly with the imported goods.

Who Is Responsible for Enacting and Enforcing these Duties?

The Canadian International Trade Tribunal (CITT) and the Canada Border Services Agency (CBSA) are jointly responsible for the administration of SIMA. The CITT’s role is to investigate complaints made by Canadian producers of goods that are identical or similar to the competing imports and who suspect that such goods are being dumped or subsidized, causing injury to Canadian industry. Injury may be shown by:

  • decreased profits
  • lost sales or market share
  • reduced prices
  • other such difficulties

If the CITT establishes harmful dumping or subsidizing of imported goods, the CBSA has the authority to impose anti-dumping or countervailing duties on dumped or subsidized imports.

Will Your Goods Be Affected?

The CBSA publishes an up-to-date list of goods currently subject to anti-dumping or countervailing measures on its website. Taking a good look at the measures currently in force is the best way to reliably determine whether your imported goods could be subject to duties under SIMA.

How Can Customs Brokers Help?

As a Canadian customs brokerage with over 25 years in the business, the team at Orbit Brokers is dedicated to helping you with all things customs clearance related. We can help clarify the application of anti-dumping and countervailing duties to any future goods you intend to purchase, or goods you’ve already bought and imported through customs clearance.

Likewise, if you are the subject of an investigation by the CITT or would like to file a complaint with the CBSA regarding competing goods that you suspect are being dumped or subsidized, we can help guide you in relation to the procedure and the evidence you will need to prove your claim.

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