Sunday, 16 June 2019

Macron: France will force Ford to revitalise site of plant closure

PESSAC: French President Emmanuel Macron pledged to force automaker Ford to pay to help create new jobs on an industrial site the US firm plans to close in southwestern France.

The French government has denounced Ford’s decision to shut its plant making gear boxes after the company rejected a takeover bid that could have saved some of the 800 jobs at the site in France’s southwest.

“We shall force the firm to revitalise” the industrial site at Blanquefort, near Bordeaux, “to invest for its industrial make-over”, Macron told local lawmakers.

“The law allows us to force a firm to pay” for this, he added.

Ford has previously said it would fund a broad “re-industrialisation plan” to reduce the impact on the region’s economy.

Government spokesman Benjamin Griveaux on accused Ford executives of taking a “shameful attitude” in refusing a final offer from Franco-Belgian equipment manufacturer Punch Powerglide on Monday.

French officials had hailed the improved bid lodged by the Strasbourg-based company last week, which could have allowed around half the employees to keep their jobs.

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