GM decision to close Canadian plant causes strong reactions

GM decision to close Canadian plant causes strong reactions

GM decision to close Canadian plant causes strong reactions

The Oshawa plant, however, has been producing an older model, she said.

The head of the union representing General Motors Co. workers in Oshawa, urging Prime Minister Justin Trudeau to do everything possible to save the assembly plant, warning that the USA automaker is heading for a complete divestment in Canada.

"It's come back to haunt us", Nolan said.

"What we're going to implement is that they can work the 20 hours and then they will be allowed to collect EI".

The automaker said that it would shut down propulsion-component plants in Maryland and MI, and idle two additional, unnamed assembly plants outside the US.

"The UAW and our members will confront this decision by GM through every legal, contractual and collective bargaining avenue open to our membership", the union said in a statement.

Production reached its peak in the 1980s after a almost $8-billion investment GM's Canadian manufacturing facilities, making Oshawa "Autoplex" one of the biggest assembly plants in the world, boasting a workforce of over 40,000.

The closures are expected to take effect by the end of next year.

The proposal boosts regional content of tariff-free automobiles to 75 per cent and requires 40 per cent of a auto be made by workers earning US$16 an hour, shifts that favour Canadian and USA plants over those in Mexico and overseas.

Production at the plant in Oshawa, Ontario fell to about 148,000 vehicles previous year from a peak of 940,000 in 2003, a drop of about 85 per cent, according to Dennis DesRosiers of DesRosiers Automotive Consultants Inc.

Unifor said it had been told that GM has not allocated any work to Oshawa past December 2019.

"You will see us have new employees joining the company as others leave the company", Barra said.

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GM could use the announced plans as leverage during upcoming contract negotiations - beginning next year with the UAW.

"I spoke with GM (CEO) Mary Barra to express my deep disappointment in the closure", Trudeau tweeted on Monday.

This is devastating news for the thousands of GM workers in Oshawa.

Prior to the confirmation, Unifor said a decision to close the Oshawa plant would not align with the latest collective agreement, signed in 2016. "We recognize the need to stay in front of changing market conditions and customer preferences to position our company for long-term success".

In October, GM offered buyouts to thousands of blue- and white-collar workers in an attempt to reduce payroll and other costs.

The US$6-billion in savings includes cost reductions of US$4.5 billion and lower capital expenditure annually of nearly US$1.5 billion, GM said.

"We supported GM, as everyone remembers, years ago when they were in trouble ... our history goes back 100 years with General Motors and to say we're disappointed is an understatement".

GM has also been caught in the trade war between the USA and China.

"GM expects to record pre-tax charges of $3.0 billion to $3.8 billion related to these actions, including up to $1.8 billion of non-cash accelerated asset write-downs and pension charges, and up to $2.0 billion of employee-related and other cash-based expenses", the automaker said.

One potential partner could be Honda Motor Co., which already has r&d relationships with GM for fuel cell and autonomous vehicles. "So we're growing faster than anyone in the industry in new technology, at the same time as we're unfortunately going through next year this really hard change with regard to our manufacturing base in Canada".

John Henry, the mayor of Oshawa, said early on Monday on Twitter that he hadn't talked to GM yet, and that a meeting was scheduled to begin at 09:30 a.m. Ontario time between the management and workers.

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