Ford is cancelling its plans to build a new plant in Mexico to invest $700 million in Michigan to create more self-driving and electric cars. The move will create an estimated 700 jobs in the U.S.
Ford CEO Mark Fields told CNN on Tuesday that the auto company's decision is a "vote of confidence" in the pro-business environment President-elect Donald Trump is fostering.
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Last year, Ford planned to invest $1.6 billion to transfer production of the Ford Focus from Michigan to Mexico to save costs. The Focus will still be built at an existing plant in Hermosillo, Mexico, but Ford will now expand its plant in Flat Rock, Michigan to make room for new designs.
Fields believes electric cars will outsell gasoline-powered cars in the next 15 years, and the investment will help bring seven new electric vehicle designs into fruition in the next five years.
Trump frequently criticized Ford throughout his campaign for moving jobs to Mexico, saying the auto company was planning "to fire all employees in the United States" to build a plant in Mexico. He specifically targeted General Motors in a tweet Tuesday morning, warning the company to make cars in the U.S. or face a "big border tax." This statement echoes Trump's tweets from last month threatening to impose a 35 percent tariff on companies that manufacture across the border.
"I am thrilled that we have been able to secure additional UAW-Ford jobs for American workers," Jimmy Settles, the vice president of the United Auto Workers union, told CNN.
Ford currently employs 85,000 Americans–up 28,000, or nearly 50 percent, in the last five years–and has 8,800 employees in Mexico, according to CNN.