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Honda Reveals $750 Million Dollar Ontario Investment

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On: Mon, Nov 10, 2014 at 1:25PM | By: Carl Malek


Honda Reveals $750 Million Dollar Ontario Investment

In an announcement released earlier this week, Honda rvealed that it is investing $750 million ($857 million CAD) in its Ontario-based operations. It's a bid to make the Alliston-based plant there the global leader for production of the company's popular Civic sedan. This would not only cement the crucial importance of the plant, it would also allow the facility to receive the important technical updates and assembly technology needed to keep up with Civic production while also allowing the company to train a new generation of Honda workers.

While the majority of the investment will go towards new assembly technologies and other updates for the plant's automated assembly systems, a portion of this massive investment will for work training and specialized R&D partnerships with locally based colleges and universities. The training program will introduce young people to the assembly process as well as open the doors for possible future employment at the plant. For its part, the province of Onatrio is also chipping in $75 million (CAD) in the form of conditional grants for economic development.

An immediate result of this investment is that the plant will become a teaching plant for all other Honda facilities worldwide. In addition, a bit of history will be made with this decision. According to a report from the Reuters news agency, the plant is the first facility outside of Japan to be designated as a global lead plant, an impressive feat and achievement for all involved. In a statement by Honda Canada President and CEO Jerry Chenkin, he emphasized the importance of this investment and the new opportunities avalible at the plant. He said, "With this $857 million investment, Honda is pleased to extend our commitment and deep manufacturing roots in Ontario. In 1986, we became the first Japanese auto company to manufacture in Ontario. Today, we employ more than 4,000 highly skilled Ontarians in our three plants, have built over six million vehicles in this province, and our total manufacturing investments in Ontario will now reach $3.9 billion dollars. I would like to thank the Government of Ontario for supporting our efforts to innovate and remain competitive in an increasingly aggresive global automobile market".

When the plant first opened back in 1986, it was a piviotal move since it made Honda the first Japanese automaker to formally assemble vehicles in Canada. It also served to inspire rivals, such as Toyota and Nissan, to follow suit; they opened plants of their own in the country during the latter half of the 80s and early 90s.

Meanwhile, look for this investment to not only help the plant prepare the workers of tommorow, but to allow it to be capable of producing the next generation Civic sedan, whenever it eventually arrives.

11-10 arm




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