BMW boss’s comments on Holden demise criticised

John Camillo, the South Australian secretary of the AMWU, has spoken out against recent comments by BMW Australia's Phil Horton that GM Holden was certain to end its car making in Australia.

Horton, speaking at the launch of the BMW Z4 in Cairns, said that a Coalition victory in the upcoming federal election, to be held on September 7, would speed up the demise of Holden’s manufacturing in this country.

“It makes no logical sense for Ford and Holden to have a manufacturing operation in a country like Australia,” Horton said, according to Fairfax.

“There are some massive economic factors that you just can’t get away from: we are a very, very long way from anywhere else and, right at the moment, even though the dollar has weakened, it’s still a very expensive place on a worldwide basis to do anything,”

Camillo, describing Horton as an “outsider”, and whose company received “high levels” of government support from Germany, said it was “a bit rich” for Horton to have made  his comments.

"This is a real kick in the teeth," Camillo told News Corp. Camillo mentioned the car makers’ workforce agreeing last month to a three-year pay freeze to help it remain viable.

"Comments like those from the boss of BMW Australia are not helpful to the workers of Holden or any other car manufacturer or component manufacturer in Australia. These people and their families depend on this industry. Just like BMW factory workers in Germany depend on their company to survive."

The Coalition is likely, according to recent polls, to win the federal election this weekend. It has pledged to reduce automotive assistance by $500 million, which Holden’s managing director Mike Devereux has said would see Holden end its factory operations in Australia.


Leave a Reply