Ford Motors announced its intention to expand operations in the US by setting up three major electrical-vehicle battery factories and an auto assembly plant in the country, by 2025. It is estimated that the move will generate jobs for 10,800 people in the US.
The auto manufacturer has partnered with the battery supplying company, SK Innovation, a subsidiary of the South Korean SK Group, to set up the aforementioned facilities. They plan to invest more than $11.4 billion in the initiative.
Ford will build two lithium-ion battery plants in Central Kentucky along with a 3,600-acre campus in Tennessee.
The investment is a part of ‘Ford+’, an initiative by Jim Farley, CEO, Ford. This is part of the attempts to make the Company’s operations more profitable by working on developing its cacity to produce autonomous, electric and connected vehicles. The Company’s move is being funded through profits.
On the other hand, the Company’s recent shutting down of plants in India continues to be a big issue for the Indian auto sector. Around 4,200 Indian employees have been directly affected by the Company’s move. Ford claims that it suffered operating losses of around $2 billion in the past decade in India, and a $0.8 billion non-operating write-down of assets in 2019. The plants will shut down by 31 December, 2021.
Employees who have lost their jobs due to the move continue to stage protests. Ex-ford workers operating two plants in Gujarat and Tamil Nadu continue to seek governmental aid to help them secure their livelihoods. Ford spokespersons have said that they are discussing with the unions and trying to come up with a solution.