New Trade Deal Could Lead To Major Growth For Local Auto Industry

Canada's Minister of Innovation, Science and Economic Development is calling the new trade deal with the US and Mexico a huge win for Windsor.

Navdeep Bains told AM800's The Afternoon News that the local auto industry could see as much as a 20% increase in business and the federal government plans to help companies scale up production.

"Since we formed government, we've seen $5.6-billion worth of investments in the automotive sector and that's been attributed to our Strategic Innovation Fund where we partner up with the automotive sector," says Bains. "So we've done so in the past. We'll continue to do so going forward. There's enormous growth opportunities that are available."

As part of the new United States, Mexico, Canada Agreement, the requirement for vehicle content made in North America will increase to 75% from 62.5%.

He says there's a chance for some major growth in the sector.

"There's $23.5-billion worth of auto parts that we produce. We have the potential to export $32.4-billion. So enormous growth potential," says Bains. "So we look forward to partnering up with the sector to help workers and businesses and the families in the Windsor region and across Canada."

Bains says the new agreement provides wage protection as well.

"For example, a significant percentage of the value of the vehicle must be produced by workers earning at least $16 an hour," he says."This new agreement has the potential to improve Canada's automotive manufacturing competitiveness vis-a-vis Mexico. So that was a very important part of the deal."

Bains says US imposed steel and aluminium tariffs remain in place for now, but works continues with the US government to try to find a better path forward.

Canada does $2-billion in trade everyday with the United States.