WASHINGTON, March 30 (Xinhua) -- U.S. President
Barack Obama announced Monday a plan to help the nation's struggling auto
industry restructure for the future, preventing its "sudden collapse."
"We cannot, we must not, and we will not let our auto
industry simply vanish," the president said.
U.S. President Barack Obama makes an
announcement about the American automotive industry in the Grand Foyer at
white house in Washinton, on March 30, 2009.(Xinhua/Zhang
said his administration will offer General Motors (GM) and Chrysler a limited
period of time to work with creditors, unions, and other stakeholders "to
fundamentally restructure in a way that would justify an investment of
additional tax dollars."
During this period, the automakers "must produce
plans that would give the American people confidence in their long-term
prospects for success," he said.
U.S. President Barack Obama (R) speaks
about the American automotive industry while Treasury Secretary Timothy
Geithner stands by in the Grand Foyer at white house in Washinton, on
March 30, 2009.(Xinhua/Zhang Yan) Photo Gallery>>>
GM will get adequate working capital over the next 60
days to produce a reorganization plan acceptable to the administration, while
Chrysler is getting up to 6 billion dollars and 30 days to complete a merger
deal with Italian automaker Fiat.
To support demand for auto sales during this period,
the government will offer tax incentives for auto purchases, and to consumers
trading in old cars for newer fuel-efficient models.
GM and Chrysler, two of the nation's Big Three
automakers, have been hard hit by the economic downturn and the worst decline in
auto sales in 27 years. They got 17.4 billion dollars in emergency loans from
the Bush administration in December last year on the condition that they would
develop plans to restructure.
U.S. President Barack Obama speaks about
the American automotive industry in the Grand Foyer at white house in
Washinton, on March 30, 2009.(Xinhua/Zhang Yan) Photo
the terms of the loan agreement reached during the Bush administration, GM and
Chrysler are pushing the United Auto Workers (UAW) to accept shares of stock in
exchange for half of the payments into a union-run trust fund for retiree health
They also want labor costs from the union to be
competitive with Japanese automakers with U.S. operations.
The two automakers face a Tuesday deadline to submit
completed restructuring plans, but neither company is expected to finish their
Moreover, GM is seeking 16.6 billion dollars more,
while Chrysler wants 5 billion dollars more.
"What we are asking is difficult," Obama said Monday.
"It will require hard choices by companies. It will require unions and workers
who have already made painful concessions to make even more. It will require
creditors to recognize that they cannot holdout for the prospect of endless
"Only then can we ask American taxpayers who have
already put up so much of their hard-earned money to once more invest in a
revitalized auto industry," he said.
The Obama administration also replaced GM's CEO Rick
Wagoner with the company's chief operating officer, Fritz Henderson.
If the automakers fall short, Obama raised the
specter of using bankruptcy laws to force their restructuring.
The other one of the Big Three automakers, Ford, has
said that it has enough cash to survive the downturn without government
CHICAGO, March 30 (Xinhua) -- U.S. automaker General Motors on early Monday
confirmed the resignation of Rick Wagoner as chairman and chief executive
officer of the company, and named Fritz Henderson, its current president and
chief operating officer, as its new CEO. Full story
OTTAWA, March 30 (Xinhua)
-- Canada on Monday rejected the restructuring plans of the Canadian branches of
General Motors and Chrysler as unrealistic" and demanded new plans, but pledging
to extend an interim-loan immediately to help the companies stay alive. Full story
CHICAGO, March 30
(Xinhua) -- The U.S. government rejected Monday the turnaround plans of General
Motors Corp (GM) and Chrysler LLC but gave them a dose of tough medicine -- 60
more days to develop more sweeping restructuring. However, Auto experts believe
the automakers still face an uncertain prospect although their potential for
survival in such a hard time exists. Full story
BEIJING, March. 6
(Xinhuanet) -- The White House task force Thursday grilled General Motors Corp
bondholders in a volley of renewed questions on the proposed terms of a
debt-reduction deal seen crucial to keeping it from bankruptcy.
In a report released Thursday, auditors of General Motors
raised "substantial doubt" about the troubled automaker's ability to continue
operations, and the company said it may have to seek bankruptcy protection if it
couldn't execute a huge restructuring plan. Full story
General Motors assembly workers leave
the GM Powertrain plant at the end of their shift in Warrren, Michigan
March 26, 2009. GM said on Thursday that 7,500 of its U.S. factory
workforce represented by the United Auto Workers union accepted buy out
offers to leave the struggling automaker's payroll. (Xinhua/Reuters
CHICAGO, March 26 (Xinhua) -- General Motors said on Thursday that 7,500 hourly
employees, about 12 percent of the automaker's U.S. hourly work force of 62,400,
have accepted buyout offers and most of them will leave the company no later
than April 1, 2009.
GM indicated it will fill job openings with current
employees whenever possible. In facilities where new employees are needed, GM
will hire individuals at the entry-level wage and benefit structure. The extent
of the new hiring at each facility will be determined on a plant-by-plant
basis. Full story
CHICAGO, Feb. 26 (Xinhua)
-- General Motors Corp. on Thursday reported an annual loss of 30.9 billion U.S.
dollars in 2008, the second-largest in history only dwarfed by a hefty loss of
38.7 billion dollars in 2007.
The future of the biggest U.S. automaker depends on
whether it can get more federal assistance. The company, which has obtained 13.4
billion dollars in bailout loans, requested as much as 16.6 billion dollars in
additional funding on Feb. 17. Full story