As part of their bailout package, General Motors agreed that at least 16 percent of its North American production would take place in Canada. The closing of the Oshawa consolidated line may cause GM to be in violation of those terms.
A report in the Globe and Mail states that unless GM can find more capacity, whether at the Oshawa flex line or elsewhere, GM will only be building 13 percent of its North American-produced vehicles in Canada once production of the Impala and Equinox moves to factories in the United States. Currently, the two Oshawa lines and the CAMI plant in Ingersoll, Ontario account for a 21 percent share.
GM says it intends to honor its commitments, but no government officials would divulge the penalties or mechanisms in place to ensure that GM complies. Negotiations with the CAW are scheduled to begin this summer, and the union is hoping to save the roughly 2,000 jobs at stake by reversing GM’s decision on the consolidated line and convincing them to add a third shift to the Oshawa flex line, something that GM says is not in the cards.