Published: Fri, December 07, 2018
Economy | By

GM CEO Mary Barra was forced to shut United States plants: Bob Nardelli

GM CEO Mary Barra was forced to shut United States plants: Bob Nardelli

"We will be forever grateful for the assistance that the USA government provided General Motors and we're trying to make sure we're good corporate citizens and continue to provide jobs and provide vehicles and transportation that customers want in this country", Barra said.

A week after announcing huge job cuts and factory closures that enraged U.S. President Donald Trump, GM's CEO met members of Congress from OH and Maryland on December 5. "I informed the members that many hourly employees at the impacted U.S. plants will have the opportunity to work at other U.S. GM plants and that we are committed to working with them to minimize the impact on the communities", the executive said.

Mary Barra emerged from the Washington meeting Thursday, saying it was "very productive".

Asked about Trump's comments, Barra did not directly answer but said she understood the strong reaction in Washington.

MI will bear a brunt of the cuts with the possible loss of the Hamtramck Assembly plant and Warren Transmission Operations plant outside Detroit. Barra, who met with MI lawmakers on Thursday, was advised to utilize US based GM plants for the production of new products before going to Mexico.

Senator Gary Peters, a Michigan Democrat, questioned why GM was launching production of its new Chevrolet Blazer SUV in Mexico as it was cutting production in the United States and said the company needs to move the vehicle to the United States.

She cast the decision to downsize as critical to keep GM competitive.

Rep. Brenda Lawrence, whose district includes the Detroit-Hamtramck factory, says GM "didn't show any compassion" for workers in its announcement last week.

"I'm hopeful that we will get a new product here", Green said in a telephone interview.

Democratic lawmakers told reporters that they focused the meeting on workers. "And we're going to fill up those factories, or rip them down and build brand-new ones". Salaried workers will receive outplacement assistance "to help them transition to new jobs". After GM announced its plans, Trump threatened to eliminate subsidies for GM in retaliation. "Product decisions made by the company have left U.S. and Canadian plants with low volume".

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