John Robbins, Bullet News
It was mostly smiles and applause Tuesday as officials from a Chinese company announced details of their plans to spend $25 million and create up to 250 jobs by establishing a facility for manufacturing wind turbine towers in Thorold.
Federal, provincial and municipal politicians gathered at the former Dana Canada plant Tuesday morning for the official announcement by TSP Canada Towers Inc., whose officials praised all three levels of government for their encouragement and support leading up to the company’s decision to locate in Niagara.
But absent from the ranks of well-wishers was Fort Erie Mayor Doug Martin, who, although he was invited, decided not to attend the event. That’s because Martin has spent nearly a year worrying about the future of a similar turbine tower manufacturer in Fort Erie, DMI Industries, and wonders why the region and province would work to bring a competing company to Niagara at the risk of hurting an existing operation.
“This has a direct and negative impact on a company in Fort Erie,” Martin told Bullet News Tuesday afternoon.
“There’s only a limited number of these towers going up. We’re very concerned about the decision of the province and Niagara Economic Development (Corporation) to bring in direct competition,” the mayor added. While officials Tuesday said luring the Chinese company to Niagara was a two-year process, Martin said he only recently learned about it and by then it was a “done deal.” Read article