General Motors wants to shut down production in the Canadian city of Oshawa, Ontario by 2019. On Monday, GM chairman and CEO Mary Barra revealed during a conference in Detroit that the auto maker is planning to end production at the Oshawa assembly plant, along with two other facilities in Detroit and Warren, Ohio. The company apparently is looking to focus more on autonomous and electric vehicles.
According to Barra, GM's restructuring of its product manufacturing process will result in cost savings of an estimated $6 billion for the company by 2020, and might include slashing its global salaried and salaried contract staff by 15 per cent. (as reported by Canada’s CBC). But it is not yet fully clear exactly how many of the 2,500 jobs at Oshawa will be lost.
Unifor, which represents 315,000 unionized workers in Canada, said late Sunday that while it does not have the complete details yet, it knows that no GM product has been allocated to the Oshawa Assembly Plant past December 2019. The union also mentioned in the Sunday note that it had been informed that GM will "make a major announcement" on Monday that would likely affect global operations. “Based on commitments made during 2016 contract negotiations, Unifor does not accept this announcement and is immediately calling on GM to live up to the spirit of that agreement," Unifor said.
Monday morning, thousands of General Motors assembly plant workers in Oshawa, Ont., halted production. The union is planning to hold a meeting with GM later in the day.
More than 16 months ago, GM was reportedly considering "whether to cancel at least six passenger cars in the U.S. market after 2020, including the Chevrolet Volt hybrid, Buick LaCrosse, Cadillac CT6, Cadillac XTS, Chevrolet Impala and Chevrolet Sonic," according to Reuters, citing unnamed sources familiar with the matter. The carmaker’s steps seem to be a response to a slowing demand in the auto market.