Today, Premier Kathleen Wynne joined Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau and General Motors executives to announce that General Motors has chosen Ontario, Canada, to significantly expand its engineering and software development work. The company’s investment will also boost the province’s economy and create more than 700 jobs.
According to Kathleen Wynne, Premier of Ontario, “GM’s decision to develop next-generation vehicle technologies in Ontario is a vote of confidence in our province’s highly skilled workers and strength as an innovation hub. Our government welcomes this investment, which will help Ontario play a leading role in building the auto industry of the future.”
As the top vehicle producer in North America, Ontario has quickly become a global automotive hub. The province’s robust automotive presence is the primary reason General Motors chose Ontario for this investment, which will allow the renamed Canadian Technical Centre to play a leading role in the development of the next generation of connected, autonomous and alternative-fuel vehicles.
“Today’s announcement sends a positive signal to the global auto industry that Ontario is the ideal location for developing and commercializing disruptive technologies. Our government will continue its close partnerships with industry, labour, and the innovation sector to secure the province’s long-term future as a leader for auto innovation and advanced manufacturing. Congratulations to GM Canada on this significant achievement, and we look forward to our continued partnership” says Brad Duguid, Minister of Economic Development, Employment and Infrastructure.
In fact, Ontario is the only sub-national jurisdiction to have five major global automotive assemblers: Chrysler, Ford, General Motors, Honda and Toyota. The province’s success in this industry is largely due to Ontario’s vast engineering and research talent and the climate of innovation driven by leading sectors in automotive, information technology and clean technologies.
In addition to the investment, General Motors will build a major software development centre in Markham and upgrade its cold weather testing facility in Kapuskasing, doubling the length of its test track. The company will also expand its Ontario-based engineering team by more than 700 new positions over the next few years.
According to Stephen Carlisle, President and Managing Director, General Motors of Canada Company, “GM selected Ontario to be a key software engineering hub for the future because of its wealth of talent and focus on innovation. Ontario is a leader in STEM graduates, artificial intelligence and mobile security and has shown its commitment to taking a regulatory approach that enables innovation.”
Ontario has been a longstanding and proactive partner to the automotive sector, investing over $1.1 billion since 2004 to leverage more than $12 billion in total industry investment. Ontario is also the first Canadian province to allow on-road testing of automated vehicles to help foster the development and commercialization of disruptive technologies that will define the industry’s future.
- GM Canada is headquartered in Oshawa and employs about 9,000 people in Ontario, with assembly plants in Oshawa and Ingersoll, plus an engine plant in St. Catharines.
- Ontario is one of the top jurisdictions in North America for vehicle production and the only sub-national jurisdiction to have five major global automotive assemblers: Chrysler, Ford, General Motors, Honda and Toyota, as well as truck manufacturer Hino.
- Auto manufacturing — vehicle assembly and parts — directly supports more than 100,000 jobs in Ontario with hundreds of thousands more spin-off jobs in communities across the province.
- Ontario assembly plants produced nearly 15 per cent of North American vehicles over the last five years and the auto industry contributes around $16 billion annually to the province’s GDP.
- Strengthening the auto sector is part of Ontario’s five-year, $400-million Business Growth Initiative that is helping to grow the economy and create jobs by promoting an innovation-based economy, helping small companies scale-up and modernizing regulations for businesses.