Last week, Toronto city council voted overwhelmingly in favor to ban Mexican-made General Motors vehicles from the city’s municipal fleets.
This motion was proposed by left-wing Toronto councillor Mike Layton, who claimed it was to show “solidarity” with workers at GM’s Oshawa Assembly plant, which the automaker recently decided it would close down before the end of 2019.
The City of Toronto ‘s municipal fleet currently consists of around 5,000 vehicles, just 376 of which are made by GM. Of those, just 26 were built in Mexico. Layton acknowledged that it was “not a lot of vehicles,” but hoped that the motion would prevent companies from taking similar actions in the future.
“You know what, our purchasing power as a city is worth something,” he said.
This motion seems unlikely to have any major affect on the future of GM Oshawa. Not only has Toronto purchased less than 200 vehicles from GM in the past two years, the city still seems willing to purchase the company’s vehicles that are made in the United States – this despite the fact that Ford and Fiat Chrysler offer competing products to many of GM’s most popular fleet vehicles.
GM says it remains committed to Ontario and the Toronto area and points to its Toronto Tech Campus as proof, which is currently under construction and slated to open in the near future. The automaker also claims it is Canada’s largest automotive R&D, software and engineering company – largely thanks to its Canadian Technology Center, which is located not far from Oshawa in Markham, Ontario. Its manufacturing plants in Ingersoll, Ontario and St. Catharines, Ontario are also expected to remain open for the forseeable future.
“GM has contributed more than $100 billion into Canada through manufacturing, purchased goods and services, and over $8 billion invested into worker pensions,” the automaker said in a previous statement. “GM’s investment in Canada has also created Canada’s largest automotive software engineering workforce as it continues to add jobs in next-generation automotive engineering, software and testing work in Oshawa, Markham, Kapuskasing and soon in Toronto.”
(source: National Post)