The closure of a single automotive assembly plant can be devastating on the local economy. But in Australia, they're dealing with what effectively amounts to the shutdown of its entire automotive sector. Mitsubishi closed its factory there a few years ago. Ford announced just months back that it would cease manufacturing in Australia, and now General Motors is following suit. That effectively leaves just Toyota manufacturing on any substantial scale in Australia, but who knows for how much longer.

The more immediate question is what will happen to the two plants (assembly in Adelaide and engines in Melbourne) that GM's Holden division will no longer need once it winds down production in 2017 – and the workers who count on them (and the surrounding suppliers) for their livelihood. It may still be three years off, but local officials aren't waiting around to see what will happen.

According to reports coming in from Oz, several other automakers have expressed interest in taking over the Adelaide assembly plant. The development wouldn't be unprecedented, as Mitsubishi took over Chrysler's manufacturing facilities in Australia in 1980 before itself shutting down in 2008. But there are also some prospects being discussed from associated industries, including armored vehicle manufacturing and LPG conversion.

In the interim, local and federal government bodies are earmarking hundreds of millions of Australian dollars (currently worth 89 cents on the US dollar) to help reinvigorate the manufacturing sector, as well as government works projects in the shipbuilding and train-line construction sectors that could create "tens of thousands" of jobs, according to South Australian premier Jay Weatherill.


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    • 1 Second Ago
  • 11 Comments
      Daniel D
      • 11 Months Ago
      Meanwhile GM is destroying the Holden brand in Australia with the most insensitive advertising ever done by a car company in Australia. They have effectively destroyed sixty plus years of brand equity in less than a month and are looking to drop permanently out of the top five brands in Australia and quite possibly struggle to stay in the top ten. Well done GM management.
        Kahz
        • 11 Months Ago
        @Daniel D
        Perhaps they shouldn't have sold it to an American company then
        Robert Ryan
        • 11 Months Ago
        @Daniel D
        It makes the Chicken Dance look like a Michelangelo masterpiece. Incredible stupidity on the behalf of GMNA..
      edward.stallings
      • 11 Months Ago
      Socialist idiots have made most manufacturing unprofitable in Australia and the US as well.
        Brodz
        • 10 Months Ago
        @edward.stallings
        Not Socialists. Bureaucrats.
        Daniel D
        • 11 Months Ago
        @edward.stallings
        Do you even know anything about Australia? Your comments suggest you don't.
        --
        • 10 Months Ago
        @edward.stallings
        Moronic statements from someone who doesn't know what the hell they're talking about. This shutdown has been coming for years, well beyond the last couple of changes of government and leadership, spanning both parties. Mazda3 became the top selling car; Ford dropped the Falcon wagon; Holden discontinued the comprehensive variants from VZ and prior (Monaro, Cross8, cab/chassis Ute); Ford dumped Fairlane/LTD; aside from a facelift, Territory has only been "tweaked" since its original introduction, with no sign of a second "all-new" generation model; Holden has been manufacturing Cruze, a worldwide car, in place of Commodore numbers. All of these things have been happening for more than a decade. And the "socialist governments" in both Australia and the U.S. invested significant amounts of money to prop the industry up. Capitalist principles would actually require the car industry - and the financial industry, for that matter - to have been allowed to collapse during the GFC, as part of the strongest-survives, no-government-interference basis of capitalism. Your words just are ridiculous.
      • 11 Months Ago
      [blocked]