Unifor stresses need for robust national auto strategy

TORONTO, June 9, 2015 /CNW/ - Unifor welcomed today's announcement of a new committee to promote investment in the auto sector but stressed that while it is a step in the right direction, there is much more to do.

Today the provincial and federal governments announced the creation of a new sub-committee of the Canadian Automotive Partnership Council, to be chaired by Ray Tanguay, the retired chairman of Toyota Motor Manufacturing Canada Inc.. The Committee will provide advice to the provincial and federal government to help better position Ontario's automotive sector.

"The creation of this CAPC sub-committee is an important step in the right direction. We look forward to hearing more from Mr. Tanguay and Ministers Moore and Duguid about concrete next steps toward an integrated investment program that is so desperately needed," said Jerry Dias, Unifor National President.

"We are encouraged that our provincial and federal governments are finally taking action on what experts in the auto industry, including Unifor, have been saying for years," said Dias. "Canada's auto sector will only thrive with political leadership and coordinated and strategic investment, but today's announcement can only been seen as the most preliminary of baby steps."

"Mr. Tanguay has a strong track record and great credibility across the global industry. He is     an excellent choice," said Dias. "However, we are concerned that the federal and provincial governments now need to ensure that Canada has the right tools to succeed."

"There are many positive signs that Canada's auto prosperity can be regained," stressed Dias, citing growing auto sales, renewed investment in some Canadian locations, 12,000 new auto jobs created since 2009 and a lower dollar. "However, without the political leadership to seize these opportunities, they will be lost. There is an urgent need for the federal and provincial governments to cooperate to develop and implement a consistent and successful national auto strategy."

Unifor also called for the new sub-committee to include representatives from labour and the auto-parts sector.

Unifor's vision of a national auto strategy can be found at www.unifor.org.

Unifor is Canada's largest union in the private sector, representing more than 305,000 workers, including close to 40,000 in the auto sector. It was formed Labour Day weekend 2013 when the Canadian Auto Workers and the Communications, Energy and Paperworkers union merged.

SOURCE Unifor

For further information: contact Sarah Blackstock, Unifor Communications Director at 416-949-1072 or sarah.blackstock@unifor.org

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