Twenty key players from across Canada’s zero-emission vehicle (ZEV) landscape came together to launch Accelerate, Canada’s first ZEV supply chain alliance. Accelerate will establish a forum for members to collaborate, strategize, and advocate for priorities to support the accelerated development of a ZEV supply chain in Canada.

The automotive industry is currently undergoing its biggest change since the invention of the internal combustion engine. Charged by the global push to net-zero, the transition to ZEVs is accelerating. This is demonstrated by the aggressive ZEV sales targets being adopted in various jurisdictions around the world.

Canada, a long-time automotive powerhouse with rich resources, talent and infrastructure, is primed to take its place as a global leader in the new auto industry with a robust supply chain.  Accelerate’s mission is to ensure Canada capitalizes on this opportunity.

Moe Kabbara, acting executive director of Accelerate.

“We’re in a race to become a global ZEV leader,” said Moe Kabbara, acting executive director of Accelerate. “Accelerating Canada’s ZEV supply chain comes down to competitiveness and jobs. Acting now to create this alliance and to position ourselves for success in the rapidly changing automotive sector will ensure we not only retain existing jobs in Canada but also add new ones.”

Canada currently lacks a cohesive strategy and the necessary industry alignment to take its rightful place in the ZEV transition and ensure its long-term competitiveness. Accelerate will fulfill this vital industry need and provide critical support as markets transition towards ZEV technology.

“As we continue to decarbonize our transportation sector, having a unified vision for all Canadian players in the industry is very important. Initiatives like Accelerate will allow us to strengthen our domestic supply chain and contribute to a successful green economy while lowering costs, creating benefits for EV manufacturers in every category, including heavy-duty OEMs like Lion. Now is the time to act if Canada wants to be a global leader in electrification and we are happy to be on board with the alliance,” said Patrick Gervais, vice president of marketing and communications at Lion Electric and chair of Accelerate.

The first alliance of its kind in Canada, Accelerate will develop an industrial roadmap to build out the supply chain, engage in policy advocacy, and enable collaboration among ZEV players, helping to attract investment, secure public support and create a talent pipeline to power the emerging supply chain.

“Canada’s ZEV shift presents an historic opportunity to grow our auto industry and create a larger stable of good, union jobs. But this transition won’t come easy, and will require strategic planning and active government policy, all across the new supply chain,” said Jerry Dias, national president of Unifor, Canada’s largest private sector union, with more than 315,000 members across the country.

Jerry Dias, national president of Unifor. Image credit: OFL via Flickr.

“Accelerate will play a critical role in identifying these opportunities and advocating for new investment to maximize the benefit for workers and the economy.”

Accelerating Canada’s ZEV supply chain is especially important as other countries and jurisdictions like the United States and Europe jockey to become leading global ZEV manufacturing hubs. Canada must adapt quickly to the rapidly changing industry landscape to ensure a just transition for existing automotive industry workers and create additional well-paying jobs in the sector.

Several major ZEV industry players have already joined the alliance, and a complete list of founding members can be found here.

For further information on Accelerate, visit acceleratezev.ca.

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