Not even in Tokyo in the middle of the “largest ever” forestry-focused Asian trade mission could B.C. Forests Minister Doug Donaldson and industry leaders avoid talking about U.S. softwood lumber duties. Last week, during a mid-mission teleconference from Japan, Donaldson spoke of the importance of increasing B.C. lumber exports to China and Japan. But it was softwood lumber duties and the North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA) that dominated the discussion with reporters. The point of the mission was to expand markets in Asia for B.C. wood products to reduce the province’s reliance on the U.S. – which imports four times the volume of B.C. lumber that China does.