Tesla CEO Elon Musk is no stranger to setting up shop on international grounds, as two of Tesla’s five gigafactories are based in Berlin, Germany, and Shanghai, China.
But new documents from the electric car company indicate there may be a new, non-US headquarters in the works.
Next stop, Canada?
Per a filing to Canada’s Office of the Integrity Commissioner obtained by Electric Autonomy Canada, Tesla has begun lobbying efforts with the Ontario government in what appears to be ground setting for opening a new factory.
The filing states that Tesla plans to “engage with the government and its agencies to identify opportunities for industrial and/or advanced manufacturing facility permitting reforms with the intent to increase the competitiveness of Ontario and its ability to attract capital investment through establishing approvals timeframes that are competitive with high-growth manufacturing locations in North America, while also working with government to identify or align incentives programs that could further increase the attractiveness of Ontario for industrial and/or advanced manufacturing investment.”
A Canadian-based factory would be a big deal for the US-based car company, which has difficulties with pandemic-related closures and delays in its Shanghai, China factory. China is also the largest supplier of EV batteries, so having a way to outsource materials closer to home may help to ramp up production.
It would also put Musk and Tesla in direct competition with budding EV developers General Motors and Ford who already have plants set up in the city.
Rumors swirled about a Canadian Tesla facility after Musk made comments during Tesla’s shareholder meeting last week when he asked attendees to shout out where the company’s next gigafactory should be.
“We get a lot of Canada. I am half Canadian, maybe I should,” he mused.
Tesla already operates a branded battery gear factory in Ontario in the city of Markham, which opened in November 2021. Batteries made at the factory are shipped to gigafactories in Berlin and Austin, Texas.
“I’m delighted to share that Tesla Canada is joining our already robust automotive and technology ecosystem by locating a manufacturing facility in the City of Markham,” Markham Mayor Frank Scarpitti said at the time. “The facility will be the first branded Tesla Canada manufacturing facility in Canada and will produce state-of-the-art manufacturing equipment to be used at the Gigafactories located around the world in the production of batteries.”
Tesla was up over 23% in a one-year period as of Thursday afternoon.