Advertisement Advertisement The screening will be at the soon to be reopened Ontario Place Cinesphere, the world’s first permanent Imax theatre.Following the screening, Nolan will participate in a conversation with Cameron Bailey, the artistic director of TIFF. Dunkirk writer-director Christopher Nolan plans to attend the Toronto International Film Festival for a screening of the Second World War epic.The free event on Sept. 10 will celebrate the 50th anniversary of Imax Corp. Dunkirk, which hit theatres in July, was shot almost entirely with Imax cameras.It will screen in Imax 70mm at the event during TIFF, which runs Sept. 7 to 17. Associated Press Advertisement Nolan is said to have pioneered the use of Imax cameras in major motion pictures, beginning with The Dark Knight.Dunkirk follows the evacuation of Allied soldiers as they’re surrounded by enemy forces on a beach in France in 1940. Facebook In this March 29, 2017 file photo, Christopher Nolan, director of Dunkirk, discusses the film in Las Vegas. Nolan will be in Toronto next month for a free screening of the film as part of TIFF. (CHRIS PIZZELLO / CHRIS PIZZELLO/INVISION/AP) LEAVE A REPLY Cancel replyLog in to leave a comment Login/Register With: Twitter
Advertisement Facebook NEW YORK (AP) — Real life will imitate art this spring at the USA series “Suits” when series regular Meghan Markle bids farewell to the legal drama in a wedding — and then goes off to marry her prince in real life.Show creator and show runner Aaron Korsh has written an on-screen wedding for Markle’s paralegal-turned-lawyer Rachel Zane, who will finally exchange vows during the April 25 season seven finale with her longtime love Mike Ross, played by Patrick Adams. The two have been lovebirds for years and had one previous wedding date collapse.Both actors will then exit the show, which starts filming season eight this month. The wedding will be a sort of dress rehearsal for Markle’s real one to Prince Harry at Britain’s Windsor Castle on May 19. “I think we had to do this,” said Korsch. “It’s something that we owed and had to do. Obviously, I’m so happy for Meghan in her personal life and that it landed sort of similarly. It just happens.”Korsh said he was thankfully given enough warning that Markle’s real-life romance might trigger changes in her character’s plotline and he didn’t have to scramble to undo anything.“When you start a show, they definitely don’t tell you to anticipate that one of your actors is going to marry a prince. That’s just not in the handbook,” he said. “But a lot of time, these things kind of force you to open up the box and get creative and invite new characters into your world and explore them.”One new character who joins in season eight will be Katherine Heigl, a veteran of “Grey’s Anatomy” and “State of Affairs.” She’ll star alongside regulars Rick Hoffman, Gabriel Macht and Sarah Rafferty. Dule Hill will also become a series regular. There’s also a “Suits” spinoff planned starring Gina Torres, a former series regular.Macht, who plays Harvey Specter on the show, has already texted and emailed Heigl to welcome her. “I think she’s going to fuel a lot of fire for a lot of the characters in the show and there’s going to be a lot of conflict going on,” he said.Macht said it was a bittersweet time for the show with the arrival of a film star to the cast but also the loss of Markle and Adams, two actors from the core ensemble.“Their intelligence and their humor and just the weight that they bring onto set will be sorely missed. It’ll be a new space. It’ll be a new rhythm that we’ll all have to find,” he said. “That brings opportunity for us but it also brings a sense of loss.”Korsh said at least he could give the long-engaged couple a happily-ever-after “in a climactic way, which is very satisfying.”“The good thing is if they didn’t ride off into the sunset together, we would have to break them up and we didn’t want to do that,” he said. “That was one fortuitous thing that happened with them both leaving at the same time: We got to give them a happy ending.”___Mark Kennedy | Associated Press LEAVE A REPLY Cancel replyLog in to leave a comment Advertisement Login/Register With: Advertisement Twitter
Evermore Theatre Company is pleased to announce that Christef Desir has joined the Toronto premiere production of Dry Powder.Desir will star as Seth, a junior partner with a plan to rescue KMM Capital Management, a private equity firm struggling to make a comeback from a PR disaster. “Christef is electric. Seth is a very complex and conflicted character, and Christef really has an amazing and intuitive grasp of that complexity.”, said Evermore producer Greg White.The same week his private equity firm forced massive layoffs at a national grocery chain, Rick Hannel threw himself an extravagant engagement party, setting off a publicity nightmare. Fortunately, Seth, one of Rick’s partners, has a dream of a deal to invest in an American-made luggage company for a song that will rescue his boss from the PR disaster. Twitter Login/Register With: LEAVE A REPLY Cancel replyLog in to leave a comment Advertisement Advertisement Facebook Advertisement
Login/Register With: Advertisement Q: You closed your eyes in the episode when you were waiting to find out if you were going to be picked, as if you couldn’t bear to look. What was going through your mind?Michelle Treacy: “I had so much anxiety. Throughout the whole show, I had been really confident. I trusted in who I was, and what I did, but that was the one moment where I was like, ‘Oh my God, what if it’s not me?’ So I just said to myself, ‘Girl, close your eyes and take a deep breath.’ ”Q: For the purposes of building up the tension on a TV show, they really drag out those moments, don’t they?Michelle Treacy: “They leave pauses between everything, really long pauses! There’s this awkward silence, and everyone is thinking, ‘When is he (Scott Borchetta) going to say something?’ ”Q: You had a record deal before this, so what was your path to deciding to try out for THE LAUNCH?Michelle Treacy: “I had taken a year off music, got dropped from my label, kind of didn’t know who I was any more. I just wanted to be normal for a minute. I got a job at the mall. I also had a long-distance boyfriend, and when that ended, it all kind of crashed around me. I felt as if I had put everything into that. I actually went to the hospital for anxiety, because I didn’t know what to do. I had a week to kind of restart my life. The nurse said to me, ‘Be more selfish and go out and get exactly what you want.’ And I said, ‘Well, there’s this TV show that I’ve thought about auditioning for, and tomorrow is the last day to apply – so can I leave?’ And she said, ‘Okay, you can leave.’ The next day came, I remember being picked up, going home, putting my makeup on, driving to my guitar player’s house, recording the audition, filling out all the questions online, and hoping to God I made it before midnight. And I did!”Q: When you were recording “Emotional”, there was an interesting development in the studio when Marie-Mai and Bebe Rexha came in, and you said that the whole vibe changed. It got me thinking, is the recording industry still really male-dominated in terms of producers, technicians and engineers, and is that something the music business maybe should think about?Michelle Treacy: “We always need more females. The more females, the better it is. Just think about it: A lot of the songs you hear on the radio, with these women singing about their bodies and stuff, have been written by men. Hey, they tell a story and they make their money and it’s beautiful, but we need women to stand up and say what they want to say, wear what they want to wear, and be who they want to be. It’s important. When you put three women like that in a studio, it’s magic. We look into each other’s eyes and we just know, because we’re on the same wavelength. The majority of my sessions, for sure, have been just men in the studio. I’m not sexist, I want to work with the best of the best. But I really do wish more women would stand up. We could dominate the industry.”Q: There was an interesting moment when Scott was debating which artist to choose, and he said, “I will always take the artist that is too much, because you can reel them back.”Michelle Treacy: “Let me tell you, I’ve always been the wildcard. I wanted to come into this vulnerable. I wanted to show the world, this is why you can support me. Because think about it, I’ve already had it all, I’ve already had the deal, I’ve already had the songs, why choose me, right? Why give me another chance, I’ve already done it. But I wanted to come in and say, ‘Yeah, I did it, and I messed up.’ I was too young, I didn’t know what I was doing, I had too many people around me telling me who I should be, and it didn’t work for me. But now I’ve come back and I’m grounded and I’ve decided who I want to be, and I won’t compromise that for anyone. I wanted to show everyone that I am a good person, I can do this, and I deserve it as much as anyone else. I’m not a naive little girl any more. I want to be honest and I want to be an independent, strong lady.”By Bill Harris | Special to The Lede Advertisement Emotions were raw during this week’s episode of CTV’s THE LAUNCH, as Michelle Treacy’s version of the song “Emotional” wowed the mentors and “launched” a fresh stage of her career.Treacy, a 22-year-old singer from Ottawa, took full advantage of the rare opportunity for a second chance in the music business, having previously been under contract with a record label. But Treacy said she felt as if the song “Emotional” had been written for her and about her, and that was a powerful combination for world-renowned music executive Scott Borchetta, Québec pop icon Marie-Mai, producer Nile Rodgers and celebrity mentor Bebe Rexha.We spoke with Treacy about the “Emotional” roller-coaster of appearing on THE LAUNCH: LEAVE A REPLY Cancel replyLog in to leave a comment Twitter Advertisement Facebook Michelle Treacy
Advertisement LEAVE A REPLY Cancel replyLog in to leave a comment Facebook Advertisement Twitter OTTAWA – A new report says foreign companies nearly doubled their share of the film and television production done in Canada over a 10-year period, and accounted for more than half of the $8.92 billion generated in 2017-18.The Canadian Media Producers Association says foreign location and service companies working in this country accounted for a record $4.77 billion of the industry’s total volume for the 12 months ended March 31, 2018.That’s up 26 per cent or $991 million from the previous 10-year high of $3.78 billion set in 2016-17 and more than triple the $1.45 billion generated by foreign location and service companies in the year ended March 31, 2009. Login/Register With: Independent Canadian production volumes fell for the first time in five years in 2017-18 but accounted for 34 per cent of the total. In-house production by broadcasters accounted for 13 per cent of Canadian volume after shrinking to the lowest level in nine years.The annual score card comes as the Canadian media landscape shifts — with mobile devices on wireless networks becoming stronger alternatives for viewing television, film and digital video content in homes and theatres.The report shows the overall volume of screen media produced in Canada has grown nearly 62 per cent over the decade, from $5.12 billion in 2008-09, but the strongest growth has been from foreign location and service companies. Advertisement
APTN National NewsThe federal government has asked the Canadian Standards Association to help define who is a member of the Metis Nation.The organization that will put the Metis information together also sets the standards for many household products.That is not sitting well with Metis leaders across the country.Clement Chartier is the president of the Metis National Council and he spoke to APTN National News about the issue.
(APTN National News reporter Kenneth Jackson walks with Cindy and Darrin Murch as they leave an Ottawa court room Thursday where the man accused of killing Cindy’s sister Pam Kosmack June 4, 2008 made his first court appearance on two murder charges.) By Kenneth JacksonAPTN National NewsBefore the man accused of killing her sister left an Ottawa court room Thursday he stopped and looked Cindy Murch in the eyes.Murch stared right back.“I didn’t blink,” she said, her eyes still glistening from the tears she wiped away from seeing Marc Leduc, 56, for the first time after learning he is accused of killer Murch’s older sister Pamela Kosmack, 39, June 4, 2008. Her body was found next to a west end bike path. She had been choked to death.Leduc also faces first-degree murder charges in connection to the death of Leanne Lawson, 23. Her body was found downtown Ottawa and lived at a local shelter.Police said she was involved in the sex trade and said the same about Kosmack.The family takes offence to this.“She wasn’t a prostitute. She didn’t need money. Her family helped her out,” said Cindy’s husband Darrin Murch.Kosmack had her own apartment and was a mother.She hit dark times when getting shingles and was prescribed Oxycontin painkillers. She got hooked.A few weeks before she died she attempted to get treatment but couldn’t find a bed.The Murch’s sat in the front row of the court room Thursday to get a good look at Leduc.“Let him see your eyes. He already knows me,” Darrin whispered to Cindy. Darrin works at the local detention centre where Leduc as been since November on charges of sexually assaulting a young women at knifepoint. The woman was able to wrestle the knife away and flee.She is lucky to be alive police said.When Leduc entered the room he was disheveled with grey hair and beard. He kept looking at someone across the room.Police linked Leduc to the two murders through DNA as reported Wednesday by APTN National News.When Leduc sat down Cindy broke down in tears wiping them away with a Tim Horton’s napkin.“It’s OK sweetie,” Darrin whispered to her again this time putting his hand on her knee to comfort her. “It’s OK.”Darrin didn’t take his eyes off the man police alleged killed his sister-in-law known in the family as “the Rose.”Police held a press conference after the court appearance but wouldn’t release any new information. They said the investigation is on-going.They are trying to link Leduc to other murders in the city. Two of them were First Nation women.Jennifer Stewart was found stabbed to death in the Vanier suburb in August 2010. Kelly Morrisseau was also from Vanier but was found stabbed to death in Gatineau across the river in December 2006.She was seven months firstname.lastname@example.org@afixedaddress
UPDATE: Elsipogtog Chief Aaron Sock moved burnt-out trucks Sunday night with two friends, a shovel and a local tow-truck company. War Chief John Levi says still wants RCMP to ground surveillance flights to move camp to Hwy 116 site. Mi’kmaq Warrior Society spokeswoman Suzanne Patles says group needs mandate to continue participating if camp moves.By Jorge Barrera APTN National News ELSIPOGTOG FIRST NATION–The remaining encampment along Route 134 that was the scene of a heavily-armed raid Thursday will be dismantled if the RCMP grounds its surveillance aircraft, said Elsipogtog’s War Chief John Levi.Levi said stopping the surveillance flights would be an act of good faith and allow people in the community to heal.Levi said he spoke with RCMP officers Sunday who also wanted free passage to remove the burned-out shells of their vehicles torched during Thursday’s raid.“I told them, get rid of that plane. We are trying to heal and you are still there poking us with a stick,” said Levi. “They are not willing to call off the plane and I told them I am not backing them up on cleaning up their mess. It works both ways, when you negotiate something, you get something.”He said he came away frustrated from the meeting, but hoped to convince the police to do the right thing Monday.“Let our people heal, don’t agitate any more, it is so simple,” said Levi. “Yet they can’t even do that.”New Brunswick RCMP could not be reached for comment.Levi is the war chief specifically for Elsipogtog and is not connected to the Mi’kmaq Warrior Society which was in charge of security at the encampment at the time of the RCMP raid by camouflaged tactical units.Levi was a prominent spokesperson for Elsipogtog’s anti-fracking movement throughout this past summer.Levi said there are plans to move the encampment and light a sacred fire in an open area used during the summer. The area, which was once the nerve centre of the region’s anti-fracking movement, sits just off Hwy 116 which runs through Elsipogtog First Nation’s territory.“We are planning on going to the 116 where the sacred fire was before and do our healing there and get ready for the next round,” said Levi.Levi said there is no longer any point to the Route 134 encampment after the raid freed the exploration trucks it was blocking.“There is no sense to being on the side of the road, it’s only a danger for our people,” said Levi.Many of the Warrior Society’s core members were among the 40 arrested during the raid. At least two involved in its leadership are still in custody. The RCMP also seized three hunting rifles, ammunition, knives and crude improvised explosive devices.The encampment is less than a kilometre away from a high school.“For the safety of the students there, we don’t want anything to escalate here anymore,” said Levi.Levi said he’s never advocated the use of weapons or violence.“I told my supporters, let’s kill them with kindness. The only weapons we carry are drums, sweetgrass and sage,” said Levi.A community meeting was held in Elsipogtog Sunday afternoon to discuss the trauma experienced by community members as a result of the raid.Levi said the community hall would remain open 24-7 throughout the week for people who need counselling as a result of the events.“We have to help our people heal,” said Levi, in an interview with APTN National News by the burned out police cruisers as the RCMP’s surveillance plane circled overhead.Elsipogtog Chief Aaron Sock also asked the community to allow RCMP members to return to the detachment on the reserve, said Willi Nolan, from Elsipogtog.“There is great disappointment, there is mistrust of (the RCMP by) the people,” said Nolan.Nolan said Thursday’s raid, which triggered widespread chaos and clashes between police and demonstrators, left many people shaken.“The community suffered terrible trauma. We saw our elders, youth and women being injured, being hurt by the police because a corporation wants to poison everything,” she said. “They saw what the law does.”But there was another sentiment just beneath the pain, said Nolan.“It was also celebratory. One elder said, ‘we are winning,’” she said. “Even though it doesn’t feel like it now, it feels like we are all traumatized, but he said we are winning and I want to believe him.”The encampment along Route 134 continued to hum with life late Sunday evening as volunteers split and piled fire wood while others sat around fires chatting and smoking cigarettes. In one area, a group of warriors were called into a circle and told that their job was not to instigate, but to keep the peace.There was an air that this could all continue indefinitely, even as they opened the road back to two lanes of traffic. The day before, over 100 Mi’kmaqs and their supporters marched from the site and for about an hour blocked Hwy 11, which passes over Route 134.Some people, who did not want to be named, criticized the meeting held earlier in the day. One long-time supporter said he thought the meeting was going to map out the next steps in the protest and came away disappointed. He said he planned to dig in for the long haul.Assembly of Manitoba Grand Chief Derek Nepinak visited the site late Saturday night and attended the meeting Sunday after participating in a ceremony on the community’s Sundance grounds with Sock. The two exchanged gifts and smoked a peace pipe.Nepinak said he suspected there was collusion between the RCMP and Houston-based SWN Resources Canada, which had its vehicles trapped by the encampment. SWN is conducting shale gas exploration in the region. Shale gas is extracted through fracking, a controversial method many believe poses a threat to the environment.“How is it that during this process that the company was able to come in untouched and remove their equipment?” said Nepinak. “There was obviously a degree of collusion.”email@example.com@JorgeBarrera
The Canadian Press WINNIPEG – The Manitoba government faced another call Thursday for a public inquiry into the death of an Indigenous girl whose body was found in the Red River.Chief Derrick Henderson of Sagkeeng First Nation, where Tina Fontaine grew up, said only a public inquiry can examine all the issues that contributed to the 15-year-old’s death.“I think (an) inquiry would be a step to get the right answers that we need,” he said.Tina left her home in the summer of 2014 to reconnect with her birth mother in Winnipeg. The girl soon became sexually exploited, and repeatedly ran away from a youth shelter and hotels where social workers had placed her.She was last seen leaving a hotel Aug. 8. She told a private contract worker employed by child welfare that she was going to a shopping centre to meet friends.Her body was found just over a week later wrapped in a duvet cover and weighed down by rocks in the river. The man accused of killing her, Raymond Cormier, was found not guilty of second-degree murder in February.The Opposition New Democrats and many Indigenous leaders have already called for a public inquiry to examine the actions of Child and Family Services workers, police and others.In question period Thursday, NDP legislature member Nahanni Fontaine asked Justice Minister Heather Stefanson three times to commit to an inquiry.Stefanson said she would leave the work to the provincial children’s advocate, who is already reviewing how Child and Family Services handled Tina. That report is expected in a few months.“We need to allow that process to take place,” Stefanson said.“We will await the results of that process.”Grand Chief Arlen Dumas of the Assembly of Manitoba Chiefs said he supports Chief Henderson’s call for a public inquiry.Dumas said he is disappointed with the province’s decision.“How is the miscarriage of justice in the death of a young girl not worth an inquiry?,” he said in a release. “Our children need to know that we value their lives.“It would benefit the Province of Manitoba to show our First Nation citizens they mean it when they speak of reconciliation.”NDP Leader Wab Kinew said earlier this week that a public inquiry would be more thorough than the children’s advocate review, because it would involve sworn testimony at public hearings.The last public inquiry into Manitoba child welfare concluded in 2013 and found continued failures by social workers leading up to the murder of Phoenix Sinclair. The five-year-old girl was beaten to death by her mother and mother’s boyfriend in 2005 after social workers decided she was safe and closed her file.
Willow FiddlerAPTN NewsThe Cat Lake First Nation in northern Ontario says the province of Ontario has offered help with its mould issues – but not details outlining what kind of support is coming.The community is dealing with dozens of homes containing mould.Chief Matthew Keewaykapo says he has been in touch with Ontario’s Indigenous Services Minister Greg Rickford.“He was going to work on something but didn’t say what it was,” Keewaykapo told APTN News.Keewaykapo said he told Rickford that the community could use another 10 to 14 units to avoid an evacuation but no commitment yet.“The province hasn’t offered any kind of assistance as of yet and haven’t done anything,” he said.Cat Lake is located 600 kilometres north of Thunder Bay.In an agreement worth $10 million reached with the federal government, it will be getting some news houses for families in mould infested homes.But the province has yet to say what it will do to help.On Monday, NDP MPP Sol Mamakwa called on the province to assist with the housing crisis.“Last week this government claimed that it funded an infectious disease specialist to conduct a full medical assessment of the community and that additional nurses had been deployed to the community,” Mamakwa said in the legislature.“I spoke with the chief, medical specialists were sent but by the Federal government and there are no additional nurses.”In February, Cat Lake declared a state of emergency because of the mould.“When a social emergency is declared the Ministry of Indigenous Affairs plays a coordinating role in efficiently responding to these emergencies,” said Finance Minister Victor Fedeli. “Speaker we do know that while the provision of housing on reserves remains the responsibility of the federal government we have reached out to the community to offer Ontario’s full support.”The community is waiting to hear what form that support will come in.More than 100 houses in Cat Lake were inspected late last year and in early January.Mould in homes is believed to be the cause of severe health problems for many people in the community.In February, NDP MP Charlie Angus went to cat late and immediately called for a full medical assessment of the community.Indigenous services said it’s waiting for reports from epidemiology and respiratory specialists who were there last month.Mamakwa said the province and Ottawa need to work together to make sure the community has access to medical specialists.“Will this government stop playing games with the lives and health of children and families of Cat Lake and send up the emergency health team up to the community it so desperately needs now?” he asked.The community is set to received materials to build 15 new homes, repair 21 existing homes and 10 portable housing units are to be installed while the winter road is still firstname.lastname@example.org@willowblasizzo
The federal government vowed to aggressively defend Canada’s softwood lumber industry after the U.S. International Trade Commission unanimously voted that American producers have been harmed by imports of subsidized Canadian lumber.“We will stand shoulder to shoulder with the forestry sector in Canada,” Natural Resources Minister Jim Carr told reporters in Ottawa.Carr called the duties unnecessary and said Canada has already launched challenges under both the North American Free Trade Agreement and at the World Trade Organization. The NAFTA dispute panel has to make a ruling by next fall. The WTO process could take years.“We have fought them before and we’ll continue to defend Canada’s interests,” Carr said.He added the government is helping the industry by offering a support package, including loan guarantees at commercial rates, and working to expand export markets and transform the industry.In a 4-0 vote Thursday, the agency sided with the U.S. lumber coalition, which complained that Canadian lumber was subsidized and that it was dumped into the American market at artificially low prices.Most Canadian producers will now pay a combined countervailing and anti-dumping rate of 20.83 per cent, down from 26.75 per cent in the preliminary determinations issued earlier this year.Canadian producers have paid about $500 million in deposits for the duties thus far.The duties have added to the cost of building a home in the United States. Canadian unions and lumber companies fear the issue will eventually cause layoffs.West Fraser Timber (TSX:WFT) pays the highest duties at 23.7 per cent. Canfor (TSX:CFP) is next at 22.13, followed by Tolko at 22.07, Resolute Forest Products (TSX:RFP) at 17.9 per cent and J.D. Irving at 9.92 per cent.A Resolute Forest Products spokesman said the U.S. will now hold large industry deposits as “ransom” in hope of pushing the Canadian government to sign a “bad deal.”“Sorry U.S., that’s not going to happen. Canada is not going to be bullied into submission,” Resolute’s Seth Kursman said in an interview from Washington, D.C.He added that the financial health of American firms is clear evidence that no injury has been suffered.“The U.S. industry has been crowing about its prosperity for over a year. It is making more money than at any previous time in history.”The B.C. Lumber Trade Council said the ruling, while not unexpected, is “completely without merit.”Council president Susan Yurkovich said the process is biased in favour of the U.S. industry.“We are confident that this latest decision by the ITC will again be reversed,” she said in a news release.ITC decisions in the two previous softwood lumber trade disputes didn’t survive appeals, Yurkovich noted.Between 2001 and 2006, when the last softwood lumber dispute took place, it’s believed about 15,000 jobs disappeared in the softwood industry.Yurkovich said the U.S. Coalition’s claims of injury “ring particularly hollow” given the strong financial performance the U.S. industry is facing and Canadian imports are lower than in 2006 when imports were deemed non-injurious.New Brunswick Trade Policy Minister Roger Melanson said the province remains “deeply disappointed” by the vote.“Our government strongly feels that these duties against New Brunswick and Canada’s softwood lumber producers are unfair and unwarranted,” he said in a statement.British Columbia Premier John Horgan said the province believes an independent tribunal will determine the U.S. allegations are unfounded.“Today’s ruling, though not unexpected, means that B.C. and Canadian forest companies must continue to pay unfair and unwarranted duties, to make U.S. lumber companies and land owners even richer at the expense of Canadian exporters and American consumers and builders,” he said in a news release.The U.S. Lumber Coalition, which launched a petition nearly a year ago, applauded the vote.“The evidence presented to the ITC was clear — the massive subsidies that the Canadian government provides to its lumber industry and the dumping of lumber products into the U.S. market by Canadian companies cause real harm to U.S. producers and workers,” stated co-chairman Jason Brochu.“Now, with a level playing field, the U.S. lumber industry, and the 350,000 hardworking men and women who support it, can have the chance to compete fairly.”Fellow co-chairman Joe Patton added U.S. lumber mills will be able to make investments to expand production to meet demand.Reasons supporting the vote are expected to be released by mid-January, the commission said Thursday.Trade data from the United States Department of Agriculture shows the amount of Canadian softwood imported was down eight per cent for first nine months of 2017, compared with the same period in 2016.Trade data from Statistics Canada shows British Columbia producers are bearing the brunt of the drop, with softwood exports to the U.S. down about 33 per cent. The value of those exports was down 28 per cent.British Columbia’s wildfires last summer cut exports in July and August to about half what they were a year earlier.Quebec exports to the U.S. actually went up three per cent and Ontario exports are up 11 per cent so far this year.Quebec and Ontario wood exporters rely almost exclusively on U.S. markets, with 99 per cent of Ontario shipments of softwood and 98 per cent of Quebec’s going to the United States.In 2016, about 81 per cent of B.C. softwood was exported to the United States, while in 2017 that fell to 63 per cent.
OTTAWA – Canada’s metal producers are urging the government to push back against an American plan to slap steep tariffs on aluminum and steel imports, saying they are being unfairly targeted in a sweeping strategy aimed at protecting U.S. companies from state-sponsored Chinese producers.President Donald Trump announced Thursday he intends to impose duties of 25 per cent on steel and 10 per cent on aluminum, with no mention of excluding Canada, which is the main supplier of both metals to the U.S.The tariffs will be felt most heavily by workers and consumers in the United States as the “collateral damage” spreads throughout the American economy in the form of higher prices and stunted growth, said Jean Simard, head of the Aluminium Association of Canada.“We’re not part of the problem,” Simard said. “The problem is China and the U.S. knows it.”Canada exports to the U.S. 90 per cent of the 3.2-million tonnes of aluminum it produces annually, which represents two thirds of America’s total aluminum imports.The proposed import duties would boost primary aluminum smelting jobs by an estimated 1,900, while at the same time destroying 23,000 to 90,000 jobs downstream, according to a report released Friday by Harbor, an aluminum industry consulting firm.The tariffs will have repercussions north of the border regardless of whether the U.S. grants Canada an exemption, said Joseph Galimberti, president of the Canadian Steel Producers Association.Diverted steel previously destined for the U.S. could swamp Canada’s domestic market and will also drive down prices in other countries, making it more difficult for Canadian producers to sell elsewhere, Galimberti said.“There is a significant volume of steel that will be displaced into the global market, which is already widely understood to be over capacity.”Numbers released by the steel producers association indicate the steel trade between Canada and the U.S. is balanced, with $6 billion of the product that moved in both directions across the border in 2017. Canada receives half of all American steel exports, while the U.S. receives 90 per cent of Canadian steel exports, the association said.The epicentre of Canada’s steel industry is Hamilton, Ont., and the surrounding region, where at least half of the country’s steel exports originate, said chamber of commerce president Keanin Loomis.“Steel to us is everything. It’s our identity. It’s our legacy,” Loomis said, adding he and other chamber members were “gobsmacked” by Trump’s announcement.The president is expected to get around free-trade obligations between the two countries using a U.S. law that allows him to introduce the tariffs for reasons of national security.Loomis pointed to the last time the U.S. imposed tariffs on Canadian steel imports, which occurred under former president George W. Bush. They were quickly reversed after the negative downstream effects on the American economy became apparent, he said.“This has been tried before. It failed. It would be foolish to try … this again.”Prime Minister Justin Trudeau called the trade measures “absolutely unacceptable.”“It just makes no sense to highlight that Canadian steel or aluminium could be a security threat to the United States,” he said.While there is scant detail on what the tariffs would look like, the North American automobile industry stands to be seriously affected.“The auto sector really doesn’t have a border,” said Flavio Volpe, head of the Auto Parts Manufacturers’ Association. “It’s like a plate of spaghetti. It’s not always that easy to pull one strand out.”It takes time to ramp up steel production, meaning that in the short term American consumers bear the costs of paying the tariffs, Volpe said. He added that boosting steel capacity is also capital intensive, the cost of which would also fall on American consumers.Mark Nantais, president of the Canadian Vehicle Manufacturers’ Association, said he didn’t want to speculate about the tariffs in the absence of more details, but he encouraged Canadian officials to push for exemptions.— Follow @gwomand on Twitter
TORONTO – Google and Facebook continue to be the juggernauts that dominate how Canadians use the Internet but a new “non-duopoly” trend may be emerging, suggests a report by the measurement firm comScore.When looking at how Canadians used the internet throughout 2017, growth in time spent with the Top 100 most popular online properties excluding Facebook and Google sites was consistently strong.“What we’re starting to see in Canada is folks outside out those two are showing some increases … there’s a growth outside of the duopoly,” said Bryan Segal, comScore’s vice-president of sales, in advance of Thursday’s release of the Global Digital Future in Focus report.“Time on the internet is not decreasing, it’s just you see there’s other channels (growing) and time is being proportioned (there). There’s definitely a shift.”Earlier this year, Facebook reported that it saw its numbers of daily active users in the U.S. and Canada decline for the first time ever.Meanwhile, the growing social media platform Snapchat was highlighted in the comScore report for its growth.While Snapchat has not yet cracked the Top 5 apps used by the most Canadians — those are Facebook, FB Messenger, YouTube, Google Search and Google Maps — it is No. 5 in the U.S. and U.K.But among Canadian users, comScore reported that Snapchat accounted for over 10 per cent of the overall time spent on social media apps, more than Instagram and Twitter combined (although Facebook was still far and away the leader at approaching 80 per cent).Segal said he wasn’t surprised by Snapchat’s growth and “significant slice” of the market, given the app’s younger base of users.“The core population Snapchat goes after is a highly, highly digitized millennial audience that is severely app-focused … and they spend a lot of time (online),” he said.“Canadians are definitely spending time on this entity and I think it’s encouraging to see additional players.”The comScore report looks at digital trends in 13 markets, including Argentina, Brazil, France, Germany, India, Indonesia, Italy, Malaysia, Mexico, Spain, the U.K. and the U.S., and found that while there’s a global shift toward “mobile-only” consumers who have given up completely on using computers, Canadians were still keen users of laptops and desktops.A little over 10 per cent of the Canadian market was mobile-only as of December 2017, which was an increase of 4.8 percentage points over the course of the year. Meanwhile, mobile-only users represented about 30 to 40 per cent of the markets in Brazil, Italy, Mexico and Spain, and nearly 80 per cent in India.The report did find that Canadians spent almost twice as much time with smartphones (nearly 4,000 minutes in December, or a little over two hours a day) versus how long they were using computers (just over 2,000 minutes, or about an hour a day). The time Canadians spent on computers was the highest of all the countries studied, which Segal admitted he found a bit surprising.“It’s not a mobile-only world, it might be a mobile-first world, but desktops are still really, really key,” he said.When it came to online video consumption, Canada ranked third in most videos viewed per user, and second in most hours spent watching video content on computers.Segal said when he talks to his international comScore counterparts about the Canadian market they find many of the stats linked to video streaming “quite eye-opening.”“We’ll always get asked, ‘Hey, was that a rounding error?’ And it’s like, ‘No, they’re pretty serious business.’”
DES MOINES, Iowa — American farmers still working to get out their remaining soybeans after a weather-plagued harvest season are struggling to figure out what to do with a record crop now their traditionally dominant export market is largely closed.Usually by this point in the year, 100-car trains filled with North Dakota soybeans would be moving to ports on the West Coast destined for China. This year is different because that leading soybean customer has all but stopped buying American soybeans in response to President Donald Trump’s trade tariffs.Some farmers are storing unsold beans, hoping prices will improve and markets open. But with farmers already in debt due to high costs but falling net income, economists are warning they could be forced out of business by the export crisis.David Pitt, The Associated Press
BRUSSELS — European Union authorities want internet companies including Google, Facebook and Twitter to file monthly reports on their progress eradicating Russian-backed “fake news” from their platforms ahead of elections next year.EU officials unveiled the measures on Wednesday as part of an action plan to counter disinformation in the lead up to the continent-wide vote in the spring.The internet companies will have to submit their reports from January to May, when 27 EU member countries are scheduled to vote.Officials from the EU’s executive Commission said they’ll add a “rapid alert system,” beef up budgets and add expert staff and data analysis tools to help combat fake news.Google, Facebook, Twitter and browser maker Mozilla signed up in September to a voluntary code of conduct on fighting disinformation.The Associated Press
BEIJING — China has announced a 90-day suspension of tariff hikes on $126 billion of U.S. cars, trucks and auto parts following its cease-fire in a trade battle with Washington that threatens global economic growth.The tax agency said the suspension that takes effect Jan. 1 is intended to carry out the agreement reached by Presidents Donald Trump and Xi Jinping during a Dec. 1 meeting in Argentina.The agency said Beijing will suspend a 25 per cent import charge on $66 billion of cars and trucks and a 5 per cent charge on $60 billion of auto parts.Trump agreed earlier to suspend planned U.S. tariff hikes due to take effect Jan. 1 on Chinese imports while the two sides negotiate.The Associated Press
SEATTLE — Washington Gov. and likely presidential candidate Jay Inslee proposed Tuesday a public health insurance option for state residents, the latest action by a Democratic governor to address Trump administration health policies they say are keeping people from getting the care they need.Inslee said he will ask lawmakers to consider a plan that would direct the Washington State Health Care Authority to offer public health insurance statewide to anyone in the individual market who is not covered by their employers. Inslee said reimbursement rates would be consistent with federal Medicare plans.Inslee’s move comes a day after California Gov. Gavin Newsom proposed state-funded health care coverage for 138,000 young people living in the country illegally and reinstating a mandate for everyone to buy insurance or pay a fine — part of former President Barack Obama’s health care law that congressional Republicans eliminated last year.Inslee said 14 counties in Washington are at risk of losing any access to individual health insurance options. Rising costs are causing some insurers to abandon the individual market in largely rural counties.“We are on the knife’s edge,” he told reporters.Washington Insurance Commission Mike Kreidler said the President Donald Trump’s administration has put up “real roadblocks” to health care access.The Trump administration said in July that it would freeze payments under an “Obamacare” program that protects insurers with sicker patients from financial losses, a move expected to add to premium increases.Supporters of Inslee’s plan didn’t immediately reveal cost estimates for the proposal, but the governor said “we need to write another chapter of health care reform.”State Sen. David Frockt, a Democrat from Seattle, said he would sponsor legislation for a public option.“The Trump administration has done everything in its power to undermine the health care coverage advances we’ve made in Washington,” Frockt said in a statement.Sally Ho, The Associated Press
Prime Minister Justin Trudeau flew back to Ottawa last Sunday to meet with both premiers to try solve the impasse, but the meeting ended with no clear resolution.Trudeau said after the meeting that the federal government was prepared to financially back the pipeline, and he had directed Finance Minister Bill Morneau to sit down with the company to discuss the matter.Kean confirmed on the call that discussions have begun, but said he was not going to make any details public until a definitive agreement has been reached or the discussions have ended.(THE CANADIAN PRESS) CALGARY, A.B. – The CEO of Kinder Morgan says events in recent days have reinforced his concerns about the viability of the Trans Mountain expansion project.Speaking on an earnings conference call, Steve Kean said the company suspended work on the project earlier this month because the investment may be “untenable for a private party to undertake,” and that events in recent days have “confirmed” those views.The political wrangling around the project has significantly escalated since Kinder Morgan halted work, with Alberta Premier Rachel Notley pushing to restrict oil shipments to British Columbia while B.C. Premier John Horgan stands firm in his opposition to the project.
FORT ST. JOHN, B.C. – Fort St. John City Council has decided to defer a decision on whether or not to proceed with building a dog park and its associated amenities in Toboggan Hill Park after the lowest tendered bid for the project came in over $200,000 over budget.In a report to Council, staff said that the City received three bids for the dog park project, all of which came in well over the City’s $500,000 budget for the project.Knappett Industries’ bid totalled $705,947, while bids from S. Young Enterprises and DGS Astro Paving totalled $1,060,034 and $1,275,862.11 respectively. Staff had recommended to Council that the tender be awarded to the lowest bidder – Knappett – and that Council approve an additional $368,000 from last year’s capital budget reserve for the project to cover consulting fees, contracting costs and contingencies.Councillor Byron Stewart stated that he was at first surprised to hear about the large sticker price tag, but that after looking at the scope of the work to be done, said that the price wasn’t necessarily overblown.However, councillor Trevor Bolin expressed concern about the large increase in the budget, and said he wasn’t able to support the recommendation until a breakdown of the costs for the project was given.Mayor Ackerman also asked about the City’s capital reserve, which contains funds from projects that come in under the budgeted amount.Finance Director Shirley Collington said that currently, the City’s general reserve contains an estimated $40 million, though a large amount of those funds are earmarked for other projects, including the new RCMP detachment.Council voted in favour of tabling the motion until the next council meeting on August 13th, when staff will be presenting a breakdown for the costs associated with the features of the new dog park, as well as a breakdown of earmarked funds in the City’s reserve.
Rome: The owner of Italian fashion giant Gucci is set to pay a record fine of nearly 1.5 billion euros ($1.7 billion) in a tax evasion case, according to media reports Friday. “Lawyers are still negotiating with the tax authorities over a few hundred million euros, but the fine that the (French luxury) Kering group is about to pay is the highest (in Italy),” the La Stampa newspaper said. “It’s a cheque for nearly 1.5 billion euros,” it added. It follows a probe by Milan’s public prosecutor into the fashion house on suspicion of declaring several years worth of Italian sales in Switzerland, thereby saving around 1.3 billion euros in domestic tax. Also Read – Thermal coal import may surpass 200 MT this fiscalKering is expected to sign an agreement on the amount due on May 2, according to the financial newspaper Il Sole 24 Ore. “At this stage, no agreement has been reached on any specific amount,” the French group said. Earlier this year, Kering said it faced a claim for 1.4 billion euros in unpaid Italian taxes, adding it contested the preliminary findings. The group has consistently denied avoiding tax, saying its activities were fully compliant with all tax obligations. Also Read – Food grain output seen at 140.57 mt in current fiscal on monsoon boostThe company’s Swiss-based Luxury Goods International (LGI) subsidiary has been under investigation for allegedly avoiding tax on earnings generated elsewhere. Most of the allegations centre on Gucci, whose offices in Milan and Florence were raided by Italian police in late 2017. In November, Milan prosecutors wrapped up their probe into alleged tax evasion of more than 1 billion euros by Gucci for revenues booked in the years between 2010 and 2016. The prosecutors say that revenues booked through LGI should be taxed in Italy and not in Switzerland. By agreeing to a settlement, Kering would be spared from having to pay interest and sanctions for late tax payments, which one source said would have added around 500 million euros to the final bill. Gucci’s Chief Executive Marco Bizzarri and former CEO Patrizio Di Marco are under investigation in the case. That investigation is expected to conclude with a separate settlement once the agreement on the tax dispute has been signed, one of the sources added. Lawyers for Bizzarri and Di Marco declined to comment.