This comes on the heels of Toyota Motor saying last Wednesday that it will invest $1 billion in a new Mexican car factory and Honda Motor recently opened a plant there.
What’s more, according to the USA Today, Audi, not content to share a factory with corporate cousin VW, is building a separate plant in Mexico. Hyundai corporate affiliate Kia is building the first plant in Mexico from a South Korean maker.
On the Ford announcement, United Auto Workers president Dennis Williams stated:
“The announcement by Ford to invest 2.5 billion in Mexico is disappointing but not any more disappointing than GM’s decision to invest $5 billion in Mexico or similar investments like FCA Chrysler, Nissan, Mazda, Honda, and now both Toyota and Kia which have announced investments in Mexico.
The fact is that these companies are taking advantage of slave-like wages and corruption permissible through bad trade agreements. All Americans should be angered that these products are sold in the United States, where American manufacturing workers could have had good paying jobs that respect basic human dignity. It is another example of why the American people should call Congress and say no to Fast Track; say no to more bad trade agreements and demand fair play.
And as consumers shop to buy cars, they should ask their car dealers where their vehicle of choice is made and choose to buy cars and trucks made and assembled by union members in the USA. It’s time for the American people to use their buying power to help rebuild the middle class and make the United States a strong manufacturing country once again.”
Even prior to the announcements by Ford and Toyota, there were more Mexicans employed in the Mexico’s burgeoning auto industry than there are members of the United Auto Workers.
Now with even greater competitive pressures coming from Mexico and the UAW’s less-senior membership wanting to end the two-tier wages and more seasoned members wanting an increase in pay in a new contract with the Detroit Three, Williams and his fellow UAW negotiators may find meeting members’ expectations increasingly difficult as the UAW’s contracts with the Detroit Three near expiration.