Parliamentary Secretary O'Connell announces support for more than 818 Canadian steel workers in southern Ontario

News release

Government of Canada fulfilling its commitment to support Canada's steel industry and its workers

July 26, 2019 — Whitby, Ontario

The Government of Canada stands with hard-working steel and aluminum workers, their families and their communities. And we are delivering on our commitment to support the steel manufacturing sector and its workers.

Today, Jennifer O'Connell, Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister of Finance (Youth Economic Opportunity), on behalf of the Honourable Navdeep Bains, Minister of Innovation, Science and Economic Development, announced a $20-million investment in an $81.2-million project that will create 108 jobs and maintain 710 more in Whitby and Cambridge, Ontario.

This investment will help Gerdau Ameristeel upgrade its facilities in Whitby and Cambridge to modernize steel production lines, reduce manufacturing costs, reduce the amount of scrap metal going to landfills and improve production capability for billets, which are semi-finished long steel products used to produce other steel-based products such as angles, rebar, flats or channels.

The government's investments in Canada's world-class steel and aluminum producers—such as EVRAZ, Algoma Steel Inc., ArcelorMittal, Elysis (Alcoa Corporation and Rio Tinto Aluminum joint venture), Alcoa Deschambault Aluminerie (in French), Aluminerie Alouette and Nova Tube Inc.—are ensuring they continue to provide thousands of Canadians with good middle-class jobs and remain important contributors to our economy and manufacturing supply chains.


"We are committed to supporting Canadian steel workers and the innovative, world-class products they produce. Our investment in Gerdau will help strengthen the competitiveness of the steel sector for years to come, maintain Canada's position in the global market and support jobs for middle-class Canadians here in Durham region."
— Jennifer O'Connell, Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister of Finance (Youth Economic Opportunity)

"Canadian steel producers and workers form the economic backbone of communities across our country. This investment will support 818 jobs at Gerdau and help it upgrade its facilities to become more competitive and expand its market reach."
— The Honourable Navdeep Bains, Minister of Innovation, Science and Economic Development

"Gerdau is committed to innovation and to the advancement of strategic investments that improve our process efficiency, product offerings and environmental performance. This project will help us continue making world-class steel in Ontario."
— Chia Yuan Wang, President, Gerdau Long Steel North America

Quick facts

  • Gerdau specializes in the transformation of scrap into steel. It is a major supplier of long steel in the Americas and one of the largest recyclers in the world.

  • In 2018, the Canadian steel industry employed more than 23,000 Canadians and contributed $4.3 billion to Canada's gross domestic product. This industry is a vital supplier to the Canadian manufacturing, energy, automotive and construction industries.

  • This investment is being made through the Strategic Innovation Fund, a program designed to attract and support high-quality business investments across all sectors of the economy by encouraging firm expansion as well as R&D that will accelerate the transfer of technology and the commercialization of innovative products, processes and services and will facilitate the growth of innovative firms.

  • In addition to the Strategic Innovation Fund, there are hundreds of programs and services to help businesses innovate, create jobs and grow Canada's economy. With a simple, story-based user interface, the Innovation Canada platform can match businesses with the most fitting programs and services in about two minutes.

Associated links


Dani Keenan
Press Secretary
Office of the Minister of Innovation, Science and Economic Development

Media Relations
Innovation, Science and Economic Development Canada

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