Queen's University hosts PM Justin Trudeau for major regional funding announcement
July 13, 2022
Today, Prime Minister Justin Trudeau announced a $1.5 billion investment that will create hundreds of jobs and boost the economy in the Eastern Ontario region. The funding will support the development of a manufacturing facility in collaboration with Belgium-based Umicore — a leading circular materials and electric vehicle technology company expanding its operations in North America.
“Today’s announcement is about creating jobs, cutting pollution and building a stronger, cleaner economy for Canadians,” says Prime Minister Trudeau. “[It] is another major step forward as we make Canada a global leader in producing electric vehicles. This new facility will play an important role in Canada’s clean automotive sector well into the future.”
Creation of the new facility will employ around 1,000 people during the construction phase, and several hundred once in operation. The investment will come from the federal government’s Strategic Innovation Fund (SIF), which supports transformative projects across all sectors with the aim of driving innovation that will benefit Canadians.
The prime minister was joined at the event by federal, provincial, and other dignitaries who spoke, including Canada’s Minister of Innovation, Science, and Industry, François-Philippe Champagne; Ontario’s Minister of Economic Development, Job Creation, and Trade, Victor Fedeli; MPP for Hastings-Lennox and Addington, Ric Bresee; Umicore CEO, Mathias Miedreich; and Loyalist Township Deputy Mayor, Jim Hegadorn. Belgium’s Ambassador to Canada, Patrick Van Gheel was also among the event’s distinguished guests.
“This important investment by Umicore will turn Ontario into a North American leader in this high-value segment of the EV supply chain and further connect Northern Ontario’s mineral sector to EV manufacturing in the south,” says Minister Fedeli.
Queen’s Principal and Vice-Chancellor Patrick Deane welcomed the announcement and the opportunity it presents for Eastern Ontario and the university’s faculty and students.
“Queen's university is a committed contributor to the regional economy, and we are excited by this important local investment,” says Principal Deane. “We look forward to seeing the project progress and to making new connections while developing opportunities for research partnerships that will contribute to the health, vibrancy, sustainability, and continued innovation of not only Kingston but beyond."
Guests were welcomed to Mitchell Hall with a land acknowledgement by Kanonhsyonne (Janice Hill) Associate Vice-Principal (Indigenous Initiatives and Reconciliation) and opening remarks by Queen’s Vice-Principal (Research), Nancy Ross.