British Columbia buyers and retailers grapple with sticker shock amid high furniture prices

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In the wake of an already difficult pandemic year, furniture retailers in British Columbia are now grappling with the effects of new high tariffs targeting China and Vietnam.

“It was a very difficult time. People’s orders were canceled because we couldn’t bring them at the high rate anymore, ”Love Dodd, operations manager of Vancouver Island-based Dodd’s Furniture and Mattress, told Global News.

“The customers are quite unhappy. They see it as a tax.

Read more:

Canadian furniture industry’s manufacturing and retail sectors at odds over Asian dumping outcome

The Canada Border Services Agency implemented the tariffs on May 5, in response to allegations of anti-competitive dumping by the two Asian countries.

Tariffs on China are climbing to over 295%, while tariffs on Vietnam are as high as 101%.

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The move left struggling retailers and consumers reeling from the stickers.

“We had a couple right before the fares and they were looking for a recliner for $ 698. They came back two weeks later and it’s $ 2,498. So that’s a huge, huge increase, ”Dodd said.


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Sofas, recliners from Vietnam and China subject to tariffs of up to 300% by CBSA


Sofas and recliners from Vietnam and China subject to tariffs of up to 300% by CBSA – May 18, 2021

Dodd said his company canceled 35 containers, the equivalent of about $ 1 million worth of merchandise, but ended up with an invoice for $ 200,000 for products already shipped to Canada.

“We couldn’t go back to our customers and tell them that you owe us 296% more because we were affected by this tariff,” he said.

“We honored orders as much as we could, but we actually had to take the hit ourselves as a company.”

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In a statement, the CBSA had completed the preliminary stages of an investigation, which found that imports of upholstered seats from China and Vietnam had been dumped and subsidized.

The temporary duties, he said, were in place to “offset the harmful effects of dumping and subsidies”.

Read more:

Sofas, recliners from Vietnam and China subject to tariffs of up to 300% by CBSA

Retail Council of Canada President and CEO Diane Brisebois said the functions had a “serious” impact on the ability of retailers to serve their customers.

“Our retailers don’t even have another place to buy this furniture. Most Canadian manufacturers have told retailers across the country that there are three, six and nine month deadlines to get furniture, ”she said.

“So it’s a double whammy for our retailers and certainly a double whammy for consumers. “


Click to play the video:







Canadian furniture industry’s manufacturing and retail sectors at odds over Asian dumping outcome


Canadian furniture industry’s manufacturing and retail sectors at odds over Asian dumping outcome – June 1, 2021

The council has formed a coalition of retailers to oppose the tariffs, which Brisbois has called unreasonable.

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The CBSA is expected to make a decision on whether to extend the tariffs by August 3.

Back in British Columbia, Dodd says his company is now trying to figure out what to do next, in order to stay afloat through the summer.

“It will be a challenge over the next few months trying to figure out which direction to take for the business, if the tasks don’t decrease or get removed we don’t know what’s going to happen,” Dodd mentioned.

“You might see a lot of empty furniture stores in the next few months.”

-With files from Kyle Benning

© 2021 Global News, a division of Corus Entertainment Inc.



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