Holden and Toyota have recommitted to manufacturing cars in Australia, with Holden suggesting that more government support could be necessary.
Holden is currently negotiating with the South Australian government over the announcement of 400 redundancies in Elizabeth (out of a total of 500 made public last month) and the accusation that it welched on a deal not to make any lay-offs after receiving $50 million in state government support. The car company has suggested that “swift action” was needed by governments to help the auto industry.
"Holden is working closely with the Australian Government, federal Coalition and the state governments to ensure the viability of the industry in the face of the historically significant economic challenges facing the country," said Mike Devereux, GM Holden’s managing director.
"The industry needs swift action to make Australia's automotive policy settings clear, consistent and globally competitive as quickly as possible."
The future of Holden and Toyota is under question, with some – for example Jac Nasser, a former Ford CEO who predicted a domino effect if one of the three companies making cars in Australia left – predicting its demise.
Ford cited a yearly loss of $141 million after tax yesterday, and that it would stop car-making at Geelong and Broadmeadows in October 2016. CEO Bob Graziano cited expensive labour costs and a “fragmented” market in the announcement.
Toyota has pledged to continue operating in the country, citing its engine factory in Altona, which exports product to China and Thailand, opened in December last year.
“Toyota intends to maintain its operations in Australia,” said Toyota in a statement.
“Manufacturing is an integral part of Toyota’s Australian business.”