Ford to end auto production in Australia in 2016 - Yahoo! Finance
SYDNEY (AP) — Ford Motor Co. said Thursday it will close its two Australian auto plants, ending production in the country in 2016, amid soaring manufacturing costs and plummeting sales.
The closure of the U.S. automaker's plants in the state of Victoria will mean the loss of 1,200 jobs and will transform the company into an import-only brand in Australia. Ford began making cars in Australia in 1925 and is the third largest auto manufacturer in the country.
"We understand the very real impact that this will have on our team," Ford Australia President Bob Graziano told reporters at the company's Melbourne plant. "We came to this conclusion only after thoroughly reviewing our business and exhausting all other alternatives."
Australia's stubbornly high dollar has put pressure on the country's auto manufacturers, making locally produced cars far more expensive than those made overseas. Last month, Ford's chief competitor, Holden, said it was cutting 500 jobs amid the high dollar and falling demand.
"The strength of the Australian dollar bears down on Australian manufacturing and it does make it a difficult environment for manufacturing to prosper," Australian Prime Minister Julia Gillard said following Ford's announcement.
The closure comes despite 5.4 billion Australian dollars ($5.2 billion) of government financial support for the auto industry through to 2020. Last year, Gillard announced an AU$34 million subsidy for Ford. Australia has also subsidized General Motors Co., pledging nearly AU$275 million last year to guarantee GM continues to make cars in Australia for another decade through its subsidiary Holden Ltd.
Ford also released its annual financial report Thursday, which showed a loss of AU$141 million after tax for the 2012 financial year. That follows a loss of AU$290 million in 2011, and a total loss of AU$600 million over the past five years.
The end of an Era!
My grandfathers had Fords, My Father also - and myself - heck even my son has a Ford.
I can't support a company who won't manufacture here and employ my fellow Aussies.
I mean we Aussie taxpayers subsidized Ford to the tune of $54M last year and in turn they LOST $141M ????
This sucks and whoever at Ford made this decision needs to be sacked.
Whats almost 100 years worth of brand loyalty worth in a population of 23 Million?
Ford have lost any shred of respect they had left now - and done America no favors along with it.
It's not just that we taxpayers subsidize Ford - its that like good allies we send our young men ad women to fight and die in the US wars of occupation in Afghanistan & Iraq, and now Ford US dumps us like a steaming hot turd.
This decision will bite Ford in the azz in ways they have never imagined.
Things like tenders for supply of vehicles for govt (military) etc that require a certain %age local manufacture content - the Ford product won't qualify.
Nissan tried this shyte (ceasing all Ozzie manufacture) and their brand has NEVER recovered here.
Its not just about Price.... I know Ford US was the only manufacturer NOT to take the US Govt bailouts during the 2008 GFC, and that earned a lot of respect...
Now - it seems they are belt tightening, and WE will suffer as a result.
So be it.
No More Fords for this family - EVER!