Court authorities assess social damage of Ford’s departure from Brazil

The car maker announced the end of operations this week

Published in 15/01/2021 - 11:56 By Daniel Mello - São Paulo

Brazil’s Labor Prosecution Service (MPT) has opened three civil inquiries to gauge the social impacts of the shutdown of Ford plants in Brazil. This week, the car maker announce the end of operations of factories in Taubaté, São Paulo; Camaçaria, Bahia; and Horizonte, Ceará.

An MPT meeting was held with representatives from the Ministry of the Economy and Ford to start a dialog and collect information on the closures. Three labor prosecutors are conducting the inquiries.

The prosecutors are concerned not only with the plight of workers from the closed plants, but with the production chain of suppliers that will be impacted by the changes.

Shutdown

In a note released Monday (Jan. 11), Ford mentions the impacts of the crisis brought about by the pandemic of the novel coronavirus to back up its decision to close its plants in the country. “The global COVID-19 pandemic expanded the business challenges, with persistent idle capacity in the industry and a reduction in sales in South America, especially in Brazil.”

The Labor Prosecution Service reported that the company representatives clang to these arguments throughout the hearing and agreed to submit the data requested by the prosecutors and the federal government.

The company should now focus its vehicle production in South America on plants in Argentina and Uruguay. The firm, however, will retain its administrative headquarters for South America in São Paulo, its Product Development Center in Bahia, and its Proving Grounds in Tatuí, São Paulo.

Translation: Fabrício Ferreira -  Edition: Nádia Franco / Nira Foster

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