GM cuts 14,000 jobs in electric car shift

Written by Hannah McGrath

US car giant General Motors (GM) is to axe five plants and around 14,000 jobs in North America as part of plans to discountinue its more unpopular car brands in favour of electric and self-driving cars.

GM said it would make the swingeing cuts to production in order to save $6 billion a year and double the resources spent on green and autonomous driving technology.

US president Donald Trump said he was unhappy about the move, which is at odds with jobs growth in the US economy. The job losses will include some 3,600 production jobs, and 3,000 in Canada, along with 8,100 white-collar roles.

The firm, America’s largest maker, said some workers would be transferred to factories producing SUVs and trucks to respond to growing demand for these models.

GM chief executive Mary Barra said that the company was making the cuts to “get in front of it while the company is strong and while the economy is strong”.

She added that the company is still hiring experts in software, electric and autonomous vehicles as the firm shifts its focus. “We recognise the need to stay in front of changing market conditions and customer preferences to position our company for long-term success.”