This is an overview of Canada's anti-dumping and countervailing law as contained in the Special Import Measures Act (SIMA).
SIMA helps to protect Canadian industry from injury caused by the dumping and subsidizing of imported goods.
The Canada Border Services Agency (CBSA) and the Canadian International Trade Tribunal (Tribunal) are jointly responsible for administering SIMA.
Dumping occurs when goods are sold to importers in Canada at prices that are lower than the selling price of comparable goods in the country of export or when goods are sold to Canada at unprofitable prices. The amount of dumping on imported goods may be offset by the application of "anti-dumping" duty.
Subsidizing occurs when goods imported into Canada benefit from foreign government financial assistance. The amount of subsidizing on imported goods may be offset by the application of "countervailing" duty.
Examples of subsidies:
You have to show that the dumped or subsidized imports are injuring Canadian industry. Injury may be shown by:
The Canadian International Trade Tribunal is responsible for establishing if the dumping or subsidizing of imported goods is causing injury to Canadian industry. The injury must be significant and a positive injury decision by the Tribunal provides the authority for the CBSA to impose anti-dumping or countervailing duty on dumped or subsidized imports.
These duties offset the price advantage caused by dumping or subsidizing and gives Canadian industry an opportunity to compete fairly with the imported goods.
To start the process, you must file a written dumping or subsidizing complaint with the Anti-dumping and Countervailing Directorate of the CBSA.
A Canadian producer of identical or similar goods to the competing imports can file a written complaint if it suspects that the imported goods are being dumped or subsidized and causing injury to Canadian industry. An association of producers may also file a complaint on behalf of its members.
Your written complaint must include information on the Canadian produced goods, the competing imports, the domestic industry and conditions in the Canadian market. Also, you must provide evidence relating to the dumping or subsidizing of the imported goods and the resulting injury to Canadian industry.
We can send you a set of guidelines which will help you in preparing a written complaint. This document, titled "Guidelines for preparing a dumping or subsidizing complaint", is also available from our web site at:
We will evaluate your complaint and may start a formal investigation to determine whether the goods imported into Canada are dumped or subsidized.
To ensure there is sufficient support by Canadian industry for an investigation, the complaint must be supported by producers representing at least 25 percent of Canadian production. As well, there must be more support than opposition to the complaint within the Canadian industry.
If the CBSA determines that an investigation should be started, questionnaires will be sent to exporters, importers, and, in subsidy investigations, to the foreign government involved. The questionnaires are intended to collect detailed information on the alleged dumping or subsidizing of the imported goods and the CBSA will, as needed, meet directly with these parties to examine the information provided.
Following our decision to start an investigation, we send a copy of your complaint to the Tribunal. The Tribunal, independent from the CBSA, assumes the responsibility for the question of injury to the Canadian industry and conducts an inquiry into this question. The Tribunal holds public hearings where interested parties are allowed to present their arguments and question witnesses. Interested parties generally include Canadian producers and importers, as well as foreign exporters.
(refer to the chart on the last page of this document)
The process takes about seven months from the start of an investigation until the final decision of the Tribunal on the injury matter. Our investigation and the Tribunal's inquiry are conducted separately but both are carried out during the same time period.
Our investigation process includes both a preliminary and final decision on the dumping or subsidizing of the imported goods. The Tribunal's inquiry also includes a preliminary and a final decision. The Tribunal holds public hearings at the final stage of the investigation followed by its finding on the question of injury.
In order for an investigation to continue, the Tribunal must make a preliminary decision of injury and we must make a preliminary decision of dumping or subsidizing. Otherwise, all investigation proceedings will be terminated.
We can impose temporary duty on imports of dumped or subsidized goods following a preliminary decision of injury by the Tribunal and our preliminary decision of dumping or subsidizing. This latter decision is normally made within three months of the start of the investigation. This temporary duty is intended to protect Canadian producers until the Tribunal makes its final injury decision.
If the Tribunal issues a final injury decision in favor of the Canadian industry, we impose anti-dumping or countervailing duty on all imports that are dumped or subsidized. This duty is generally imposed for a period of at least five years.
An undertaking is a potential alternative to a full investigation and Tribunal inquiry. It involves a commitment by exporters or foreign governments to change their pricing or subsidizing practices to eliminate the harm to Canadian industry.
Generally, these agreements with the CBSA result in a suspension of our investigation and the Tribunal's inquiry and can provide a faster and less costly solution.
There is no obligation to hire a lawyer or trade specialist to help you prepare your written complaint. However, the complaint must contain certain information and evidence which may require some time and effort to collect. We encourage you to contact our staff who are available to guide and assist you in this task.
It is important to understand that you will be responsible for defending your injury allegations during the Tribunal's injury inquiry. In practice, most parties participating in the Tribunal's inquiry are assisted by a lawyer or trade specialist although there is no legal requirement to do so.
If you want more information on the role and procedures of the Tribunal, you should visit their web site at :
or contact the Tribunal directly:
by phone at 613-993-3595
by fax at 613-990-2439
Contact us at the:
Anti-dumping and Countervailing Directorate
Canada Border Services Agency
100 Metcalfe Street, 11th floor
Ottawa ON K1A 0L8
Web site: www.cbsa-asfc.gc.ca/sima-lmsi/
We are available to assist you in preparing your complaint, as well as answering any of your questions concerning the anti-dumping and countervailing process.