Ford warns of job losses from imbalances in free trade
Brussels, Belgium (AHN) – The head of Ford Motor Co. operations in Europe and several other automakers have warned that a new free trade agreement between the European Union and South Korea poses a threat to jobs.
Ford notes that it is an advocate of free trade, but that there are non-trade barriers to doing business in South Korea that create trade imbalances.
During the past 11 months, the new agreement resulted in allowing 450,000 vehicles built in South Korean to be imported into Europe for sale while only 75,000 cars made in the European Union were exported to Korea.
Ford is the fourth-biggest car maker in Europe by sales. It pointed out that some of the non-trade barriers include the government policy in South Korea of only buying Korean-made cars, along with problems with doing business in Korea and currency problems.
The issue of auto sales in European nations is particularly sensitive know because the ongoing problems from the financial crisis have caused a decline in auto sales there for five consecutive years.
That decline in sales has affected by a financial crisis, auto sales are on track to decline in 2012 for a fifth consecutive year. The slump has caused decreased in sales for automakers, including:
- General Motors Co. GM European operations -2.02
- Fiat SpA, F.MI -2.19 percent
- Renault SA RNO.FR -1.41 percent
- Ford Motor Co. F European operations -1.16 percent