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GM to close auto plant in South Korea in restructuring

AP  |  Seoul 

says it will close an underutilized factory in Gunsan, South Korea, by the end of May as part of a of its operations.

The move is a blow to the administration of Moon Jae-in, who has made jobs and wages a priority since taking office in May 2017.

A GM statement said yesterday that it has proposed to its labor union and other stakeholders a plan involving further investments in South that would help save jobs.

"As we are at a critical juncture of needing to make product allocation decisions, the ongoing discussions must demonstrate significant progress by the end of February, when GM will make important decisions on next steps," Barry Engle, GM and of GM International, said in the statement.

The company's has said GM urgently needs better cost performance from its operations in South Korea, where auto sales have slowed.

The factory in Gunsan, a port city about 200 kilometers southwest of Seoul, has been making the Cruze, a sedan, and the model SUV.

It employs about 2,000 workers, and only used about 20 percent of its full production capacity in 2017, rolling out 33,982 vehicles.

GM has made 10 million vehicles since it was set up in 2002. In 2017, it sold 132,377 units in and exported 392,170 vehicles to 120 markets around the world.

Korea's said earlier this month that GM had sought government help. The government has denied reports that South will raise the issue in trade talks with the US.

(This story has not been edited by Business Standard staff and is auto-generated from a syndicated feed.)

First Published: Tue, February 13 2018. 09:25 IST