Crossing the border
The Co-Chief Executive Mark Fields announced today that the entirety of the small-car production is being moved to Mexico to lower costs.
Fields spoke to Wall Street analysts at an investors conference, saying “we will have migrated all of our small-car production to Mexico and out of the United States over the next two to three years”
The move will involve building a $1.6 billion auto assembly plant which will generate about 2,800 jobs in the area.
This announcement comes at a time when moving jobs south of the border has become a hot button issue in the current Presidential campaigns.
No details have been released yet about which models will be built in the new Mexico- based plants but the United Auto Workers Union predicted that the Focus and the C-Max were likely to be on the list, citing lower production costs and more profit as the reasons behind the move.
This announcement comes less than a year after the UAW signed a four year contract with Ford. That contract guarantees new vehicles for the Michigan-based plant as well as a $700 million deal that will preserve the plants current 3,924 jobs.
Under the current contract, workers in Michigan get around $60 per hour. Auto workers in Mexico are estimated to make about $8 an hour, according the to the Center for Automative Research.
The Ford President of the Americas said that Ford “is a global company that builds cars where it makes the most financial sense” as part of an interview with the Associated Press earlier this year.
The new plant is expected to start production in early 2018.