Reprinted from Campaign For America's Future
Ford Motor Company announced this week that it will close all operations in Japan and Indonesia this year, because it sees "no reasonable path to profitability." Last year GM pulled out of Indonesia. What does it say that they are doing this with the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP) on the horizon?
Ford is giving up on trying to crack the Japanese and Indonesian automobile markets, saying that the upcoming TPP does not address such problems as currency manipulation and other non-tariff barriers. the BBC reported, in "Ford pulls out of Japan and Indonesia":
"In 2015, Ford sales accounted for just 0.1% of the Japanese market and only 0.6% in Indonesia.
"In a statement, Ford spokesman Neal McCarthy said: 'Japan is the most closed, developed auto economy in the world, with all imported brands accounting for less than 6% of Japan's annual new car market.'
"'The 12-nation Trans Pacific Partnership trade agreement in its current form would not improve Ford's ability to compete there,' he added."
Sen. Sherrod Brown (D-Ohio) also blamed TPP. The Hill reports in, "Dems blame trade deal as Ford exits Japan":
"The TPP's lack of any meaningful currency protections means that it will be more of the same... We need our government to fight for companies in the global marketplace in the same manner as some other countries do. This business decision by Ford is further evidence of the impact of unfair currency manipulation....
"'The ink isn't even dry and we are already seeing proof that this massive agreement will sell out American workers and roll back the remarkable recovery of our auto industry,' Brown said."
Rep. Debbie Dingell (D-Mich.) joined Brown:
"Dingell said that 'this business decision by Ford is further evidence of the impact of unfair currency manipulation.'
"'Until our trade agreements meaningfully address currency manipulation, the mother of all trade barriers, American companies will continue to be threatened and disadvantaged by foreign governments who attempt to tilt the global playing field in favor of their industries and against the United States,' Dingell said."
In fact Steve Biegun, Ford's vice president of international government affairs, said TPP would "lock in" our auto trade deficit:
"'By our assessment, this TPP would lock in place a $50 billion annual auto trade deficit with Japan,' he said at a hearing held by House Ways and Means Committee Democrats on Jan. 7.
"'We do not expect that any global automaker will meaningfully increase exports to Japan as a result of this TPP agreement,' he said."
TPP Opens U.S. Market While Not Helping U.S. Carmakers In Other TPP Countries