The provisional government of British Columbia (BC) may halt imports of US wine to the province in retaliation for US restrictions on softwood lumber according to BC's forest minister Mike De Jong.

BC local newspapers are reporting comments by De Jong that BC and Canada should exploit recent World Trade Organisation rulings that would permit some retaliation by Canada over the dispute.

The federal government had "some authority now" for such retaliation, he said, claiming a block on wine imports could take effect immediately, especially given provincial governments control alcohol imports into Canada.

"Regarding wine and beer, wine at least in British Columbia, there may be a discussion around whether or not the government's purchasing habits should change," he said.