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JANUARY 29, 2019


OTTAWA – On Tuesday morning, NDP Industry and Auto Critic Brian Masse (Windsor West) secured a key demand to invite General Motors Chairwoman and CEO Mary Barra to appear before the Standing Committee on Industry, Science and Technology.

“This is an important step so that the committee members ask the questions that are on the minds of Canadian GM workers who will lose their jobs with the Oshawa plant closure,” said Masse. “The Canadian automotive and manufacturing industry took a disproportionate hit compared to the USA. We need an explanation from GM about the future of Canadian workers and industry.”
Masse’s motion requesting to invite GM CEO passed in Industry committee this morning.

GM USA is losing 3805 jobs out of 103,000 employees which is a 3.7% of the workforce in contrast to GM Canada which is losing 2900 jobs out of 8614 employees which is a 33.7% reduction of its workforce.
The last time that GM was in trouble was during the 2009 fiscal meltdown with the Canadian federal government providing a bailout which totaled $10.8 billion in loans, share purchases and subsidies. The net loss on the package is between $4 billion to $5 billion — including a $1 billion loan write-off that Ottawa buried deep in its books.

GM claims the need to close the facility is to generate additional resources to invest in innovation but during the first three quarters of 2018 the company generated $ 6 billion in profits and has received multi-billion dollar investments from Honda ($3.35 billion US) and the Softbank Vision Fund ($2.25 billion US) for its autonomous vehicle unit. Analysts have speculated that since the division, which is a considered a leader in the field, has separate reporting it could be spun off at a valuation of $30 billion US. The automaker is producing the self-driving cars at its Orion Assembly plant in suburban Detroit. It is the only mass-production facility to manufacture such vehicles. The testing of the cars takes place in San Francisco, Arizona and Michigan.

“GM is investing in the future, just not in Canada. It is our responsibility as parliamentarians to get the answers that all Canadian deserve. From GM workers to suppliers to our researchers to the local entrepreneurs. Significant investment in innovation is needed to ensure the country’s economic future,” Masse stated.

For further information, please contact: Mohummed Peer 519.982.8816

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