The American carmaker Ford has struck a tentative agreement with a Canadian Labor Union which will feature new investments, but also the ceased production of one of the company’s models.
Unifor, a Canadian Labor Union has been negotiating ever since the summer with a number of three big automakers, Fiat Chrysler Automobiles, General Motors, and Ford.
The latter automaker marked the final new work contract signed between the union and the car representatives as Unifor is trying to boost the Canadian auto market.
As the country’s automotive industry has been declining, the three newly signed deals should ensure future investments from the three car builders in their respective plants based in Canada.
The negotiations with Ford were the last to be closed, as a contract pattern has been set after the September and October four-year deals with GM and Fiat Chrysler.
The tentative agreement was reached sometime around midnight on Tuesday, as the last minute negotiations could have potentially led to a strike, the deal still having to face member ratification.
According to Jerry Dias, Unifor president, the majority of the new investments agreed on will target Ford’s Essex engine plant which is located in Windsor.
The same Dias declared that the plant will be producing the most fuel efficient engine, which will benefit from the highest available technological procedures. The product such obtained will be used in the company’s best-selling vehicle, which Dias refused to name, but which will probably enter production in 2018.
Besides the Essex Windsor-based plant, Ford will also be investing in its Oakville Assembly after the MKX and Edge models will be updated in a number of years.
The Oakville plant houses the assembling lines of the Ford Edge and Flex, and the Lincoln MKX and MKT models. Still, union officials have stated the company’s plans of phasing out in 2020 the Ford Flex model.
As besides the Essex Engine Plant, Windsor also housed the company’s Windsor Engine facility, the latter’s fate is still quite uncertain.
According to Dias, the 6.8 liter, V-10 engine will continue to be produced by the plant. The engine, which is used to power large commercial vans and F-Series pickups will still most probably be phased out.
The same Dias announced that Unifor will be trying to push for investments in the Windsor facility. Even if the engine production will be stopped, the workers will be able to transfers to the Essex Engine factory located in the same Windsor.
The tentative agreement also touched on the monetary subject, as the four-year agreement will come with an increase in wages for both old and new plant employees.
As the tentative agreement has been reached, spirits seem to have also calmed down as Unifor’s tactics of assuring a deal with Ford were quite contested by a number of local union leaders.
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