GM has announced that it will close its Oshawa, ON auto plant as part of a global restructuring.
The company is moving to focus on autonomous and zero-emission vehicles and will cease auto production in Ottawa in December of next year.
Unifor, the union representing workers at the plant, was set to meet with GM today and released a statement saying it did not accept GM’s decision, which it said violated an agreement reached in 2016 that averted the closure of the plant.
The Canadian and Ontario governments were informed of GM’s decision late on Sunday. Ottawa says it will analyze the closing and examine possible measures to help the workforce. The Oshawa plant employs about 2500 workers.
In June the former head of GM Canada, Steve Carlisle, was transferred to take over GM’s Cadillac luxury car division. Unifor said that Carlisle had promised the Oshawa plant wouldn’t be closed as long as he was head of GM Canada.
GM was the recipient of several billion dollars in loans from Ottawa and Ontario as it went through bankruptcy protection in 2009. Last month Export Development Canada noted that GM still had an outstanding loan of more than $1 billion.