Foreign workers to be involved in construction of new Honda EV plants: report

Even as controversy surrounds NextStar's use of foreign workers at its electric battery plant in Windsor, it appears that Honda will also be employing a significant number of non-Canadians to establish its new EV plants.

Foreign workers to be involved in construction of new Honda EV plants: report
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After last week's announcement that Honda would be committing $15 billion towards producing electric vehicles (EVs) in Canada, it has been revealed that foreign workers will be involved in the construction of the new EV plants, according to the CBC.

Ontario's minister of economic development, Vic Fedeli, confirmed that "short term technical experts" will be required to set up equipment and train Ontarians.

While accepting that foreign workers will be involved in constructing the plants and training Ontarians, federal and provincial officials — along with executives at Honda — have simply spoke of "maximizing" and "optimizing" Canadian jobs, the CBC further details.

The massive $15 billion deal will see four new EV factories built in Ontario, with the federal government claiming it will establish the country's first ever "comprehensive electric vehicle supply chain."

Prime Minister Justin Trudeau took to social media to celebrate the Honda deal, saying his government has "bet big on electric vehicles," and that the industry is now "betting on us."

Conservative politicians like MP Rick Perkins have pointed to the situation with NextStar in Windsor as evidence that Honda could also very well choose to employ foreigners over Canadians.

"We can't trust that his latest announcement of $5 billion in Canadian taxpayer money to another large multinational corporation will be any different," he said.

Canada's Building Trades Unions (CBTU) say that NextStar is choosing foreign workers over Canadians at the Windsor plant, even formally calling on Justin Trudeau to step in to address the situation.

The Trudeau Liberals will be spending $2.5 billion of taxpayer dollars to support the new Honda EV initiative, with the Ontario provincial government also committing another $2.5 billion.

MP Rick Perkins further criticized the deal, saying, "We have seen before where Justin Trudeau announces massive subsidies that are supposed to create Canadian jobs, only to see him turn around and let those jobs be filled by foreign replacement workers and then lie about it."

Production of the Honda EVs is set to begin in 2028 after all four factories are operational, according to Electric Autonomy.

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