Hamilton: Hamilton has been officially designated as Foreign Trade Zone (FTZ) point, by Mélanie Joly, Federak Minister of Economic Development and Official Languages, along with the Filomena Tassi, Minister of Labour and Member of Parliament for Hamilton West—Ancaster—Dundas, and Bob Bratina, Member of Parliament for Hamilton East—Stoney Creek.
As Ontario’s most diversified economy, home to world-class post-secondary institutions, a wide range of industries, and at an opportune location for national and international trade, Hamilton is a key contributor to Ontario’s economy.
As the third FTZ point announced in Ontario and one of 14 in Canada, the designation will help position the Hamilton area as a hub for international trade.
The area will be more attractive to businesses and foreign direct investment by offering a single point of access to resources and information relating to programs that relieve duties, tariffs and taxes for business.
This in turn will create local jobs and boost trade and export opportunities for existing businesses, while reinforcing Hamilton’s position as an integral hub and a key contributor to the economy.
FedDev Ontario played a key role in helping to assess and engage with the Hamilton partners to achieve the FTZ designation. The Minister and MPPs also announced support for a local manufacturer to expand its facilities.
With an investment of almost $4 million from FedDev Ontario, the Hamilton-based packaging manufacturer and supplier HT Productions Inc. (Whitebird) will expand its facility, acquire new cutting-edge advanced manufacturing equipment and transition to a new customer-centric online system to better accommodate customer orders.
With this investment, this family-owned company will create 45 skilled jobs and maintain another 105 in Hamilton.
The COVID-19 crisis has had unprecedented repercussions on key sectors of Ontario’s industry. The government of Canada is well-aware of the economic impacts of the health and economic crisis on manufacturing businesses and it will continue to support job-creating businesses, an official release said.
As the local economy continues to grow and diversify, the Government of Canada is helping to bolster Hamilton’s position as a great place to do business, create jobs and invest.
This announcement demonstrates that the Government of Canada, through regional development agencies, is creating opportunities for businesses and trade to help position them for a stable, successful future, the statement added.
Mélanie Joly said:“As the Government of Canada supports workers and entrepreneurs through the crisis, it will continue to support job-creating initiatives. As a trading nation, Canada recognizes the strong connection between trade and good jobs.
“That is why we have designated Hamilton as the newest FTZ Point in southern Ontario as part of our commitment to strengthening this region as an international hub for the global opportunity. In our continued effort to invest in southern Ontario, we are also announcing an investment of nearly $4 million to HT Productions Inc.
“This will allow the company to create 45 and maintain another 105 good, local jobs, which is good for the local economy. The government is proud of the resiliency shown by business owners and workers during the crisis and wants to put in place the right conditions to ensure our economy comes roaring back.”
Filomena Tassi said: “Hamilton is an ideal spot for Ontario’s newest FTZ Point. The city is a gateway for goods, and offers many advantages from its strong manufacturing sector to its leading-edge postsecondary institutions. This designation will build on the area’s strengths and bring new opportunities for trade. This support, along with investments in local businesses like HT Productions Inc. will put Hamilton on the path to a strong recovery for years to come.”
Bob Bratina added: “This announcement is great news for Hamilton. The city’s FTZ designation makes it attractive to more investments to the area. With the FedDev Ontario funding for HT Productions Inc., a company that was there for our frontline workers when needed most, will be able to scale-up and transition to more online business opportunities, an essential task for many of our pivoting businesses.”
Fred Eisenberger, Mayor, City of Hamilton, said: “The announcement naming Hamilton as a Foreign Trade Zone point marks a new chapter in our city’s efforts to attract foreign direct investment and expand markets for our existing businesses.
This new designation will accelerate economic activity and enhance Hamilton’s renowned reputation as a goods movement leader in Canada.”