Volkswagen, Europe’s largest automaker, announced that its subsidiary PowerCo will establish an electric vehicle (EV) battery manufacturing facility in St. Thomas, Ontario.
It will be the third Volkswagen Group-owned plant worldwide and PowerCo’s first cell factory in North America. It will equip the Volkswagen’s BEVs in the region with cutting-edge battery cells ‒ and is part of a larger plan that Volkswagen and PowerCo agreed upon with Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau’s government in August last year. The Memorandum of Understanding signed back then focusses on battery value creation and raw material security in order to promote e-mobility in the country.
According to Volkswagen, Canada offers ideal conditions, including the local supply of raw materials and wide access to clean electricity.
“Our North American strategy is a key priority in our 10-point-plan that we’ve laid out last year. With the decisions for cell production in Canada and a Scout site in South Carolina we’re fast-forwarding the execution of our North American strategy.,” said Oliver Blume, CEO Volkswagen Group.
“Today’s announcement by Volkswagen is a true testament to our highly skilled workforce and Canada’s strong and growing battery ecosystem,” said François-Philippe Champagne, Canada’s Minister of Innovation, Science and Industry. “VW’s decision to establish its first overseas gigafactory in Canada speaks to our country’s competitiveness when it comes to attracting major investments. It is also a vote of confidence in Canada as the green supplier of choice to the world. With Volkswagen and PowerCo, our government looks forward to working together towards a cleaner, more sustainable and resilient economy.”
Added Vic Fedeli, Ontario’s Minister of Economic Development, Job Creation and Trade: “This historic investment by Volkswagen and PowerCo SE is a massive vote of confidence in our plan to build and will strengthen our made-in-Ontario electric vehicle supply chain to create more good-paying jobs for workers in St. Thomas and across the province. Whether it’s investing in clean steel or unlocking the economic potential of our critical minerals, our government is on a mission to create the right conditions for businesses and workers to succeed as we build the economy of the future. Thank you, Volkswagen, for choosing Ontario.”