GM may slash American jobs because of Trump tariffs

Although a tariff on cars would apply to foreign-made cars shipped into the U.S., American automakers have voiced concerns that the European Union and other regions could retaliate.

Friday is the deadline for public comments on Trump's call for a Commerce investigation into whether auto imports pose enough of a threat to US national security to justify tariffs, according to the Associated Press.

President Trump is looking to add severe tariffs of as much as 25 percent on imported steel and aluminum, which would lead to retaliatory tariffs that could spark a global trade war.

The largest US carmaker said in comments filed with the US Commerce Department that overly broad tariffs could "lead to a smaller GM, a reduced presence at home and overseas for this iconic American company, and risk less - not more - US jobs".

GM operates 47 US manufacturing facilities and employs about 110,000 people in the United States. "Tariffs will lead to increased producer costs, increased producer costs will lead to increased vehicle costs, increased vehicle costs will lead to fewer sales and fewer tax receipts, fewer sales will lead to fewer jobs, and those fewer jobs will significantly impact many communities and families across the country". The EU, for example, has a 10% tariff on vehicles imported from the U.S. China's imposes a 25% duty on U.S. cars.

The group cited studies on the impact tariffs would have on the United States economy, warning the Trump administration about "substantial job losses".

In May, Trump called for an investigation into whether auto imports pose national security risks.

The National Foreign Trade Council (NFTC) said auto tariffs will raise costs for automakers, which will eventually hit customers.

President Donald Trump has repeatedly pressed both USA and foreign auto makers to build more vehicles in the US, which would create jobs in rust-belt states that helped elect him.

Last year, the United States exported 2 million automobiles but, Yerxa said, that number can grow if the government focuses on opening foreign markets "instead of raising barriers and costs here at home".

"Ultimately, this cost will likely be passed along to consumers in the form of higher prices", the Japanese auto giant said.

The remarks were made to the Department of Commerce, which is investigating whether to recommend the tariffs.

Some automakers have already expressed their written concern, the most adamant of all being Toyota, which said on Thursday that " a hundred and thirty-seven thousand Americans" are not " a national security threat".

"We urge the U.S.to work with its trading partners to support policies that remove rather than create new barriers to trade", the company said. Similarly, a third of Honda vehicles delivered in the USA throughout 2017 were built overseas.

Toyota, in an emailed stated reported by Bloomberg, said it has 10 USA manufacturing plants.

GM's comments on the proposed tariffs represent some of the strongest pushback on the administration's tariff proposals yet by major auto companies, all of which face the potential of significant duties on imported vehicles or components.

"In its filing on Friday, The National Association of Manufacturers (NAM) said Trump's tariffs stand to undermine the sector, ultimately "[giving] an edge to foreign production at the expense of US manufacturing, job growth, our economy and ultimately USA national security".

Friday is the deadline for public comments on Trump's call for a Commerce investigation into whether auto imports pose enough of a threat to US national security to justify tariffs.

U.S. auto production has doubled over the past decade, and the sector employs almost 8 million Americans - almost 50 percent more than it employed in 2011, according to the U.S. Chamber of Commerce.

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