Ford said today it will invest $1.6 billion to build a new plant in San Luis Potosí, Mexico, that will be manufacturing small cars by 2018, making it the latest automaker to expand its presence there.
Ford said construction of the new plant will begin this summer. It expects to begin producing cars there in 2018. Ford’s investment in Mexico will create more than 2,800 jobs by 2020, delivering a blow to the UAW, which pushed for higher wages in its contract talks with the automaker last year, and prompted a swift reaction from the union.
“Today’s announcement…is a disappointment and very troubling,” UAW President Dennis Williams said in a statement. “For every investment in Mexico it means jobs that could have and should have been available right here in the USA.”
Ford’s investment also comes amid a presidential election where the the leading Republican candidate, Donald Trump, has publicly pressured Ford to drop its plans to expand in Mexico.