Premier Kathleen Wynne released a statement following a roundtable with leaders from Ontario’s automotive sector today:
“Ontario’s auto sector is essential to our economy and to people’s lives. It drives innovation and supports hundreds of thousands of families across the province. Today, Minister Chan, Minister Del Duca and I met with key industry leaders to talk about the future of our auto sector and the steps our government is taking to support Ontario’s automotive businesses in this changing economy.
Canada’s decision to sign the Comprehensive and Progressive Agreement for Trans-Pacific Partnership (CP-TPP) will bring new opportunities for trade, investment and job creation in Ontario.
But while more free trade with more global partners is a welcome development, we should not allow these new opportunities to be created at the expense of Ontario’s auto sector. That would not be fair to the hard-working men and women who rely on these jobs, and it would undermine Canada’s economic competitiveness in the years ahead.
Last October, I sat down with key leaders in Ontario’s automotive industry to discuss the ongoing pressures from the U.S. that could impact our auto sector’s success, namely concerns over NAFTA renegotiations. I made a promise to keep doing everything I can to support the businesses and people in our auto industry, which is exactly what I am doing.
In the days following Canada’s decision to sign the CP-TPP, I have spoken with key stakeholders and leaders in Ontario’s auto industry. I have listened to their views as to the challenges and opportunities the CP-TPP creates for Ontario, and reassured them that I will continue to advocate for and support this important sector. We are working closely with our federal partners to understand the potential impacts of the CP-TPP, and continue to tirelessly promote Ontario’s interests at the NAFTA negotiating tables.
Today, I heard from many in our auto industry about the impact of the new CP-TPP, ongoing NAFTA negotiations and the implications of U.S. tax reforms. I deeply value the honest, expert advice and perspective they offer. I share their concerns. And I know we will find a way forward. I leave today’s roundtable more committed than ever to standing up for the people and businesses that depend on the province’s auto sector. Our work together will achieve the best possible deal for Ontario, and a competitive auto sector for the decades ahead.”