DETROIT (CP) - General Motors Corp. plans to close nine North American assembly, stamping and powertrain plants - including two in Canada - and cut 30,000 jobs over three years, the world's biggest automaker announced Monday.
The closures will affect a plant in Oshawa and one in St. Catharines, Ont., but most will be in the United States, Rick Wagoner, GM's chairman and CEO, announced.
GM will remove the third shift at Oshawa Car Plant No. 1 in the second half of 2006 and Oshawa Car Plant No. 2 will cease production after the current product runs out in 2008.
In St. Catharines, the Ontario Street West powertrain components facility will cease production in 2008.
Canadian job cut numbers were not immediately available.
The other plants that will close are in Oklahoma City, Lansing, Mich., Spring Hill, Tenn., and Doraville, Ga. Wagoner said GM also will close three service and parts operations facilities.
Wagoner said last month the automaker would announce plant closures by the end of this year to get its capacity in line with U.S. demand. GM plants currently run at 85 per cent of their capacity, lower than North American plants run by its Asian rivals. The plant closings aren't expected to be final until GM's current contract with the United Auto Workers expires in 2007.
GM has been crippled by falling U.S. market share, high labour and health care costs and other issues. It lost nearly $4 billion in the first nine months of this year.
The automaker could be facing a strike at Delphi Corp., its biggest parts supplier, which filed for bankruptcy protection last month. GM spun off Delphi in 1999 and could be liable for billions in pension costs for Delphi retirees. GM also is under investigation by the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission for accounting errors.
Last week, after the automaker's shares fell to their lowest level in 18 years, Wagoner sent an e-mail to employees saying the company has a turnaround strategy in place and has no plans to file for bankruptcy.