Honda invests in Canadian Auto Industry with help from Federal & Provincial governments

The auto industry in Ontario is getting another boost this month. Honda is investing nearly $500 million in their Alliston, ON facility for the manufacture of their Civic and CR-V models. This new investment, said the company, will bring their total investment in Canadian auto manufacturing to $4.7 billion.

Investments from both the Ontario and Federal governments of $41.8 million each will make up a portion of the total funding.

“Our government’s support for advanced-manufacturing platforms and clean technology in the auto sector is a key part of our plan to drive economic growth through innovation to create a better Canada,” said Navdeep Bains, federal Minister of Innovation, Science and Economic Development in a release. “That means better jobs, better opportunities and better living standard for all Canadians.”

Jerry Chenkin, President and CEO of Honda Canada Inc. says the funding will allow the company to create “an environment which will allow [Honda Canada] to further modernize our manufacturing facilities and make innovative upgrades possible.”

Those upgrades include a new paint facility that will reduce greenhouse gas emissions from the paint process by 44 per cent.

“As a result of these upgrades, HCM will continue to provide thousands of well-paying, high quality jobs in Alliston and throughout Canada,” said Chenkin. Honda employs more than 4000 people at its Alliston facilities.

This news comes as rumors spread that taxes against imported vehicles into the United States intended for Mexico could include those vehicles coming from Canada as well. According to Bloomberg, the United States imported $37 billion worth of passenger cars from Canada last year, or what amounts to a 12 per cent increase. The United States imported only  $19 billion from Mexico.

Sean Spicer, spokesman for US President-elect Donald Trump, told reporters in a conference call that their policy isn’t specific to any one country. “When a company that’s in the U.S. moves to a place, whether it’s Canada or Mexico, or any other country seeking to put U.S. workers at a disadvantage,” Trump will “do everything he can to deter that.”

National Bank Financial, based in Montreal, told the Financial Post that a 10 per cent tax on goods crossing the American border would take nine per cent off the value of Canada’s
exports there.

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