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Under restructuring, GM to build more cars overseas

Posted Friday, May 8, 2009, 2:01 pm in Employee News

The U.S. government is pouring billions into General Motors Corp. in hopes of reviving the domestic economy, but when the automaker completes its restructuring plan, many of the company’s new jobs will be filled by workers overseas, the Washington Post reported.

According to an outline the company has been sharing privately with Washington legislators, the number of cars that GM sells in the United States and builds in Mexico, China and South Korea will roughly double, the Post said. The proportion of GM cars sold domestically and manufactured in those low-wage countries will rise from 15 percent to 23 percent over the next five years, according to the figures contained in a 12-page presentation offered to lawmakers in response to their questions about overseas production, the paper said.

As a result, the long-simmering argument surrounding U.S. manufacturers expanding production overseas—normally arising between unions and private companies—is about to engage the Obama administration and the UAW, the Post reported.

On Tuesday and Wednesday, GM chief executive Fritz Henderson met with legislators and sought to ease their concerns regarding the overseas operations, the Post said. He emphasized that the company, which is shuttering factories at home, also is canceling projects in Mexico, Russia and India. Henderson also assured legislators that none of the figures are final and that negotiations with the union are ongoing, the story said. (Washington Post)
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