VACC Statement: Holden

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MELBOURNE – Dec 12, 2013: VACC, the peak automotive industry body in Victoria, is disappointed to learn that GM Holden will cease production in Australia in 2017.

“Holden is an iconic brand and has manufactured wonderful Australian cars for nearly 70 years. This would have been a very difficult decision to make,” VACC Executive Director, David Purchase, said.

“It’s a huge blow to the State and National economies and we trust the 1,600 workers in South Australia and 1,300 workers in Victoria losing their jobs will receive all the assistance they need to transition to new employment.

“The news from General Motors is not wholly unexpected, but this announcement comes at a time when the Productivity Commission is reviewing automotive manufacturing in this country. The last few days of media speculation and public political comment have overshadowed the review process and potentially scuttled the interim report, due for release next week,” Mr Purchase said.

VACC says car buyers should not be put off by Holden’s announcement. Among VACC’s more than 5,000 members are new and used car dealers, many of them Holden dealers.

“History shows us that when Mitsubishi and Ford announced they were ceasing car making in Australia, the popularity of the brands did not diminish. We expect Holden’s VF Commodore and Cruze, in particular, to be just as appealing to car buyers this week, as they were last week. The Holden range includes many great cars and buyers should not be concerned about buying a Holden, the availability of parts, servicing or the brand’s resale value,” said Mr Purchase.

VACC has also reiterated its call for State and Federal Governments to review the whole automotive industry. In support of its national association, the Australian Motor Industry Federation, VACC has repeated its call for a considered approach to how the entire automotive industry will look in the future.

“We are pleased to hear that Holden will retain sales, parts distribution centres and its design studio in Australia after 2017. What we need now is for all automotive industry parties, including the retail sector, to be involved in mapping out a sustainable industry for the future,” Mr Purchase said.

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