Power PlayCanada's role in the electric vehicle transition

Publication - April 2, 2020 - By Cedric Smith, Carolyn Kim, Ben Sharpe, Nic Lutsey

This paper, co-authored by the Pembina Institute and the International Council on Clean Transportation, evaluates Canada’s position in the emerging global electric vehicle industry by analyzing sales and production trends for conventional and electric vehicles and comparing these trends to similar auto markets around the world. By examining Canada’s electric vehicle market and assembly developments, and comparing those with activities in other manufacturing countries, we identify underlying policies that Canada could use to ensure they remain an integral part of the rapidly evolving global automobile industry.

Based on the findings from this paper, Canada holds a prominent stake in the global automotive industry, but that position could be strengthened with stronger action to support the transition to electric vehicles. The analysis reveals the following conclusions and policy recommendations:

  1. Canada’s auto industry lags behind other auto-manufacturing countries in its preparation for an electrified transportation future
  2. Targeted policy support for electrification can future-proof Canada’s auto industry
  3. Canada can build on its early leadership in developing and producing hydrogen fuel cell technology — especially for heavy-duty vehicles


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