Chilkat Valley News - Serving Haines and Klukwan, Alaska since 1966

Tariffs stall timber sale indefinitely


August 29, 2019

President Donald Trump’s tariffs on U.S. exports to China are apparently to blame for an indefinitely stalled timber sale in the Haines Borough.

The University of Alaska’s land office announced Tuesday that the interested buyer of roughly 6,000 acres of forest in the Chilkat Valley “is now choosing to wait until the tariffs improve on U.S. exports to China.”

On Wednesday, the U.S. trade representative’s office announced that it will increase tariffs on Chinese goods from 10 percent to 15 percent beginning Sept. 1. This year, the U.S. has imposed tariffs on $250 billion of goods from China in an effort to encourage domestic consumerism, according to a recent report. China has retaliated with tariffs on $110 billion of U.S. goods.

University-led negotiations for the timber sale, a process that began in March 2018, were first delayed months after the University sale was announced. Last year university officials told the public that a contract would be signed and approved by summer 2018. In November, with a contract still unsigned, the university blamed delays on illegal timber harvests on its land.

According to the university’s land office, the buyer will continue to obtain required permitting for infrastructure connected with the sale, though it does not “foresee negotiations resuming until there is a change in the tariffs.”


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