The fate of General Motors operations in Australia is hanging in the balance as GM presses the Australian government for financial assistance to prop up the money-losing Holden unit.
GM has made no decision yet on whether to continue building cars in Australia beyond 2016, the managing director of the Holden subsidiary told a parliamentary commission while laying out the case for government subsidies.
Over the past decade, most automotive manufacturers have closed shop in Australia, turning to imports instead. Currently, only GM Holden, Ford Motor Co. and Toyota Motor Co. maintain production operations – and they are struggling in the face of both a huge run-up in the value of the Australian dollar and increased competition from foreign-made products.
“It’s hand-to-hand combat there,” said Mark Reuss, president of GM’s North American operations, and formerly the chief of Holden.