Construction of the new foreign plant is set to begin this summer and will start producing cars by 2018. The new plant will bring Mexico at least 2,800 new jobs by the year 2020, the Detroit Free Press reported, and the move has left many with a bad taste in their mouth.
"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."
In response, the company claims that they will also be investing in the United States and creating jobs here as well, despite the economic gift to Mexico. The company claims to have hired 25,000 people in the US over the past five years.
"We have to make decisions on a global scale because we compete globally," Joe Hinrichs, a Ford vice president told the Free Press. "But let’s be clear: We are a proud American company and the majority of our investment happens here in the US."
Ford Motor Company has been a hot topic during the 2016 presidential race, as GOP frontrunner Donald Trump has specifically said he would stop the publicly-traded multinational corporation from producing cars in Mexico, and slap a 35% tax on everything imported to the US.
"Within 24 to 48 hours I will get a call from the head of Ford and he will say, 'Mr. President, we have decided we're going to build our new plant in the United States.'… That's 100% sure," Trump said during a campaign stop last month. "They're going to say, 'We're moving back. You want us to move to Michigan?' And I'll say, 'Yeah.'"
Many blame the migration of auto jobs to Mexico from the US on the North American Free Trade Agreement of 1993, which was ratified by President Bill Clinton.
"This is another example of what’s wrong with NAFTA and why the TPP would be a disaster for the citizens of the United States," Williams stated. "Companies continue to run to low-wage countries and import back into the United States."