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Running on subsidies – Stellantis tries to squeeze more money out of Canadian taxpayers

Published in the Toronto Sun, 29 May 2023

Re: “Trudeau swerves again” (Brian Lilley, Toronto Sun, 27 May): Once again, the deal with Stellantis proves that the “green industry” runs on subsidies, not a viable, profit-oriented business model. In one sense, I can’t blame any business from trying to get what they can from governments, even if I disagree with corporate-welfare. That said, if E/V battery production really was a profitable venture, Stellantis would go ahead with building this factory, so they can start making money, and worry about squeezing subsidies or tax breaks out of the government on the back end.

I know that Unifor members may not like to hear this, but these subsidies aren’t creating jobs. The Canadian taxpayers are effectively funding a make-work project.

The only way I would support subsidies going to private industry, is if governments took an ownership stake in the business, but governments frequently seem to screw that up too by funding unprofitable businesses or selling their stake at a loss, or both.

(It’s one of the challenges with governments, picking winners and losers. If you’re in private industry and governments are willing to shovel taxpayers’ money out the door at you, why wouldn’t you take it?)

About the author

Bruce Forsyth

Bruce Forsyth served in the Royal Canadian Navy Reserve for 13 years (1987-2000). He served with units in Toronto, Hamilton & Windsor and worked or trained at CFB Esquimalt, CFB Halifax, CFB Petawawa, CFB Kingston, CFB Toronto, Camp Borden, The Burwash Training Area and LFCA Training Centre Meaford.

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