Trump Is Mute as Ford Defies Its Earlier Promise to Build Focus in the U.S.
Ford Motor Company (NYSE:F) is going to be building the “Ford Focus” in China and shipping it to the U.S. This is coming after the company scrapped a plan to build a factory in Mexico at the president’s behest and said that it would instead build the car in America.
In January, President Donald Trump criticized Ford for its intention to ship small-car manufacturing to Mexico. Ford responded by killing the plans to build a $1.8-billion plant in Mexico. But today’s news shows that the company will not be adding jobs in the U.S, instead going to China to access the cheaper labor markets and energy costs.
The company maintains that the cost benefit is simply too high to produce goods in China, while Trump has yet to speak out on the subject.
Ford claims that the move east will save the company $500.0 million in reduced tooling costs.
Part of the motivation for the move is the dwindling interest in Ford vehicles on U.S. soil. The company has seen smaller cars go from being half of all sales in the U.S. during 2012 to 37% of sales this year.
The one bit of good news for the American worker is that the company did say it will invest $900.0 million in the Kentucky truck plant. Bigger cars are selling better than smaller cars in the U.S. market.
This is not the first time that Trump has claimed he had saved jobs when only a few months later the companies seemed to be unperturbed by the president’s outrage.
Carrier Corporation was another business that the president claimed to have saved and kept jobs in the U.S. But only a few short months after Trump made these claims, the company was once more shedding jobs that the president had said he had saved.
Trump ran on a promise for more jobs for U.S. citizens, with emphasis on blue-collar work and manufacturing. So far, the president has yet to have any substantial effect on the jobs situation in the U.S., with most of his “victories” being little more than gloating with little to show besides celebration.
“Ford bets on low oil prices, moves Focus production to China,” Reuters, June 20, 2017.