Before he’s even taken office, President-elect Donald Trump has proven to be quite the job creator.
Ford Motor Company announced Tuesday it will cancel a $1.6 billion plant planned for Mexico and will instead invest $700 million in a Michigan assembly plant, directly tying the decision to “pro-growth policies” championed by President-elect Donald Trump.
Trump had previously been critical of Ford’s plans to build in Mexico. After the announcement, Trump tweeted a link to a story about the Ford decision and then added in a subsequent message: “Instead of driving jobs and wealth away, AMERICA will become the world’s great magnet for INNOVATION & JOB CREATION.”
“We’re doing this decision based on what’s right for our business,” Ford CEO Mark Fields told Neil Cavuto on Fox Business Network. “As we think about the investments here in Michigan, as you can imagine, Neil, we look at a lot of factors as we make those. One of the factors that we’re looking at is a more positive U.S. manufacturing business environment under President-elect Trump and some of the pro-growth policies he said he’s going to pursue. And so this is a vote of confidence.”
Fields said Ford would have gone ahead with the decision whether or not Trump was elected president, however, he did say that he alerted both Trump and Vice President-elect Mike Pence ahead of the announcement on Tuesday.
The investment in the Flat Rock Assembly Plant is set to create 700 jobs, according to Fields. The money, which was taken from the $1.6 billion earmarked for the Mexico plant, will be used to open a new factory that will build high-tech autonomous and electric vehicles as well as the Mustang and Lincoln Continental, the company said in a press release.
“I am thrilled that we have been able to secure additional UAW-Ford jobs for American workers,” UAW Vice President Jimmy Settles said in the release. “The men and women of Flat Rock Assembly have shown a great commitment to manufacturing quality products, and we look forward to their continued success with a new generation of high-tech vehicles.”
The Ford news was the latest in a string of pre-inauguration successes for Trump in the manufacturing sector.
In early December, air conditioner and furnace maker Carrier agreed to stay in Indiana after weeks of negotiations headed by Pence. The decision reportedly saved about 700 jobs that would have been shifted to Mexico.
Later in the month, wireless provider Sprint and Internet company OneWeb announced they would be adding thousands of jobs in the U.S. Both companies are controlled by SoftBank founder Masayoshi Son, who had previously met with Trump.
Earlier Tuesday morning, Trump took aim at another auto giant: General Motors.
General Motors is sending Mexican made model of Chevy Cruze to U.S. car dealers-tax free across border. Make in U.S.A.or pay big border tax!
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) January 3, 2017
GM, however, quickly pushed back on Trump’s assertions.
General Motors manufacturers the Chevrolet Cruze sedan in Lordstown, Ohio.
All Chevrolet Cruze sedans sold in the U.S. are built in GM’s assembly plant in Lordstown, Ohio.
GM builds the Chevrolet Cruze hatchback for global markets in Mexico, with a small number sold in the U.S.
Now we await Trump’s counter response.