Reporting "Asre Khodro", China's BYD has announced that it will build a new electric truck factory in Ontario. The pant will be BYD's first in Canada. BYD, which specializes in electric vehicles, says it will open the plant sometime next year. The factory will hire about 40 employees to start, but that figure is expected to rise. BYD has not announced in which city in will build the plant.
BYD will initially build electric commercial vehicles in Ontario with parts and technology shipped from China. However, the company says it will eventually source more components from Canada.
"BYD is a global company, but we like to localize," BYD Canada spokesman Ted Dowling told Bloomberg. "It doesn't make sense to build everything in China and then ship it. It makes more sense to utilize the incentive programs and policy changes and create jobs in different markets."
BYD opened an electric bus plant in Lancaster, California in 2013, but Dowling says the company is eying more investments in Canada following its Ontario plant announcement. That's because Canada offers a friendlier business environment than the U.S. when it comes to green technology companies.
"There is less of a barrier to entry when it comes to having Chinese products in Canada compared to the U.S.," Dowling said.
Canada was once home to a thriving automotive sector, but the country has lost a number of jobs to Mexico and the U.S. in recent years. The country is hoping it can bring back vehicle manufacturing with a shift to electrification.