Magna, Linamar and Martinrea reach agreement with the province
Emily Jackson, Financial Post
March 27, 2020
Three of Canada’s largest auto parts manufacturers, the Automotive Parts Manufacturers Association and the province of Ontario have agreed to focus much of their ventilator building efforts on three projects.
Auto parts manufacturers have been working with government officials to see how they can help build medical equipment such as ventilators, necessary to treat COVID-19 but in limited supply in countries grappling with a spike in hospitalizations.
Magna International Inc., Linamar Corp. and Martinrea International Inc., along with the APMA, reached the agreement with the province after meeting earlier this week, Magna spokeswoman Tracy Fuerst confirmed in an email.
The three projects include ventilators built by Toronto-based Thornhill Medical, Brampton, Ont.-based O-Two Medical Technologies Inc. and General Motors Co. and Ventec Life Systems, which partnered to build ventilators at the GM plant in Indiana.
Magna is supporting the initiative with some components, logistics and purchasing, Fuerst said.
AMPA president Flavio Volpe praised the government for its efforts.
“There has been an unprecedented mobilization by government that is going to save lives. We are singularly focused on equipping the people who will do that promptly and confidently,” Volpe said in an email.
Thornhill was one of the medical equipment makers singled out by the federal government last week as part of its plan to make ventilators in Canada to ensure there’s enough supply. Its high-tech, portable ventilators were originally designed for military use.
O-Two also makes portable, transportable ventilators. It will be building the E700 model, a light weight ventilator with long battery life that provides ICU level care, according to its website.
GM and Ventec are aiming to build 200,000 ventilators, according to Reuters.