For generations, Ontario’s strong manufacturing sector has secured our role as the economic engine of Canada and provided well-paying jobs and a high quality of life for workers and their families. It has put our province at the forefront of innovation and presented endless opportunities for our continued growth and prosperity. While much of Canada’s economic activity stopped at the outbreak of COVID-19 in March, most Ontario manufacturers continued to operate. They stepped up to the plate to meet the need for essential supplies when we needed it most.
Many manufacturers ramped up or shifted production in response to the crisis to make more food, personal protective equipment, and other health care products.
Now, rather than asking what is made in Ontario, the question has become: why are more things not made in Ontario? Our manufacturers are clearly the key to our economic recovery and our preparedness for future challenges.
Consider these numbers – they tell quite a story.
In 2019, the manufacturing sector in Ontario directly accounted for over 12 per cent of the province’s economy, with over $300 billion in annual shipments, and nearly $200 billion in exports.
More importantly, the sector represents over 750,000 workers and supports their families and communities through stable, high-skill, and high-wage jobs.
Just look at how manufacturing contributed to the Ontario economy. In September alone, manufacturing jobs increased by 51,700 jobs, meaning that 17,000 more people now work in manufacturing than pre-COVID. The Ontario government’s vision of bringing manufacturing jobs back to the province is working, even in the midst of a pandemic.
The government’s support of CME’s Ontario Made Program sends a strong message to the people of Ontario that manufacturing matters once again to this province. Manufactured goods, parts, components, ingredients, and materials are what we sell to the world with pride.
Since launching in July 2020, CME’s SupportOntarioMade.ca website has registered over 4,400 products from over 1,200 local manufacturers. Products with the Ontario Made stamp range from baby wipes to barbecues, and cosmetics to cars.
Building on this success, CME is launching a new Ontario Made Consumer Directory. This guide will make it easier for people to find Made-in-Ontario products, while supporting their local businesses and manufacturers. Consumers can easily find these made-in-Ontario goods in the new online, searchable directory at SupportOntarioMade.ca. The guide features products that are made in local communities, participating retailers and company profiles.
By working together to promote Ontario-made products, we can generate billions for the provincial economy, support good-paying domestic jobs, and ensure Ontario is ready for the future.
Now is the time for action. It’s time for us to stand up and celebrate Ontario manufacturers, Ontario workers, and Ontario-made products. It is also time for us to work together – across the country – to continue to build the framework to emerge from this crisis in a strong position to build a foundation for growth and prosperity.
About Canadian Manufacturers & Exporters
Since 1871, Canadian Manufacturers & Exporters has been helping manufacturers grow at home and, compete around the world. Our focus is to ensure manufacturers are recognized as engines for growth in the economy, with Canada acknowledged as both a global leader and innovator in advanced manufacturing and a global leader in exporting. CME is a member-driven association that directly represents more than 2,500 leading companies who account for an estimated 82 per cent of manufacturing output and 90 per cent of Canada’s exports.