The North American automotive value chain: Canada’s role and prospects
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This paper deals with the North American automotive value chain and analyses the prospects for Canadian automotive sector upgrading. The size and importance of the automotive industry in Canada’s Ontario Province is a legacy of its historic ties to the ‘Big 3’ US automakers and its proximity to the traditional heartland of the US industry in Michigan. Canada continues to have marginally lower operating costs than the USA and a strong industrial culture that attracts investment. But Mexico’s integration into the North American production system, the rise of new centres of automotive production in the southern USA and rapidly growing flow of automotive parts from China to North America have begun to erode this advantage. Because the North American market is saturated, consisting mainly of sales of replacement vehicles, locational shifts in production and employment within North America are essentially ‘zero-sum games’. If the market share of the Big 3 continues to fall and the southward shift of the industry within the USA is maintained, the sustainability of the Canadian industry could be undermined. The paper concludes with a set of policy recommendations for Canada to maintain its comparative advantage in the industry. © 2009 Inderscience Enterprises Ltd.
Published Version (Please cite this version)10.1504/IJTLID.2009.021955
Publication InfoGereffi, Gary; Sturgeon, TJ; & Van Biesebroeck, J (2009). The North American automotive value chain: Canada’s role and prospects. International Journal of Technological Learning, Innovation and Development, 2(1-2). pp. 25-52. 10.1504/IJTLID.2009.021955. Retrieved from https://hdl.handle.net/10161/11559.
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Professor Emeritus of Sociology
Gary Gereffi's major ongoing research projects are: (1) a book (co-authored with Frederick Mayer) on the uptake of the global value chain paradigm by major international organizations in the economic and social development arena; (2) a forthcoming co-edited volume with Valentina De Marchi and Eleonora Di Maria on Local Clusters in Global Value Chains: Linking Actors and Territories Through Manufacturing and Innovation (Routledge, 2017); (3) work with the World Bank and the Inter-Ame