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Goodbye JAMA: Japanese Automotive Manufacturers Association set to disband

Toronto, Ontario — Directors and members of the Japanese Automotive Manufacturers Association of Canada (JAMA) have decided that the association has successfully fulfilled its core mandate; and consequently, the office in Toronto will be closing at the end of the current fiscal year—Mar. 31, 2021.

With a successful entry into force of several new trade agreements, including the CPTPP, CETA and the new NAFTA trade issues, are now secondary to more pressing regulatory concerns facing the auto industry—particularly stricter GHG emissions, ZEV mandates and new tech challenges and opportunities in the next generation of sustainable mobility—namely connected, autonomous, shared and electrified vehicles.

Since the organization entered into Canada over 50 years ago, JAMA Canada members have made meaningful and substantial contributions to the Canadian auto industry, the economy, and society overall, and will continue to do so in the years to come.

After increasing localization through extensive investment and their thriving export-based manufacturing facilities in Ontario, as well as disruption, sales, and services operations across the country.

The focus of Japanese automakers in Canada is no longer on trade policies and initiatives, which was the basis of JAMA Canada’s mandate. Instead, it has shifted to more technical, regulatory, and next-generation vehicle challenges—issues facing all automakers in Canada.

In September 2020, the cumulative production of Japanese-brand vehicles built in Canada since 1986 passed 20 million units. Overall production in Canada dropped 29.5 percent to 1,175 million units through the first ten months of 2020 due to the pandemic. Japanese-brand output at 631, 142 units led the industry with a 53.7 percent share of total light vehicle production, up from 46.3 percent in 2019.

JAMA Canada members have collectively built more vehicles in Canada than they sell here, and export more vehicles than they import from Japan, U.S., Mexico and Europe combined. From 1986 to 2019, 19.5 million vehicles were built in Canada.

JAMA Canada was established in 1984, which pushed Canada to become a net exporter of Japanese-brand vehicles every year since 1993, with a cumulative total of 5.2 million net exports through 2019.

JAMA Canada has seven manufacturing plants in Ontario and directly and indirectly employed over 94,000 jobs in vehicle and auto parts production, export/import, distribution, sales/services, with 1, 238 dealerships across Canada.

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