Canada: Masse pushing federal government to match U.S. electric vehicle incentives

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Local MP Brian Masse (NDP — Windsor West) is calling on the federal government to match incentives being provided to buyers of zero-emission electric vehicles that are being provided by the U.S. government.

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Under the announced United States’ Inflation Reduction Act, there is a tax incentive for Americans of US$7,500 if the battery components are made, mined, or processed with North American critical minerals. The legislation has also proposed a new US$4,000 incentive for Americans purchasing used electric vehicles.

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“I commend the Americans for recognizing the importance of the North American automotive industry in this new proposal which will include Canadian batteries and vehicles, including our own Windsor-built Chrysler Pacifica,” Masse said.

“I hope the Canadian government will see the need for action to help Canadian consumers and for devising a long-term plan for the industry.”

Masse, his party’s industry and international trade critic, made the request in a letter on Friday to Prime Minister Justin Trudeau and relevant cabinet ministers.

“With the current inflation rate, so many Canadians are just trying to make ends meet and electric vehicles are not a priority if you cannot put food on the table, pay for prescriptions or pay rent,” said Masse in his letter.

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“I ask the Canadian government to match the U.S. proposals for electric vehicles as a start in working towards this government’s 2026, 2030, and 2035 light-duty zero-emission vehicles (ZEV) sales targets.”

Masse made his request on the heels of an agreement reached this week by U.S. Democrat Sen. Chuck Schumer and Sen. Joe Manchin to do away with a tax-credit plan that favoured American-made electric vehicles under a Buy American policy of U.S. President Joe Biden.

An amendment to Joe Biden’s climate and health bill will expand the credits to include all of North American auto-related products which has provided a huge relief to Canadian automakers and parts suppliers.

Biden, under Buy American, had wanted to save the tax incentives for electric vehicles only assembled in the U.S. with that country’s union workers.

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