CHATHAM, Ont. — Navistar has announced it will close its assembly plant in Chatham early next summer.
The company says the heavy-truck plant closure is necessary to address competitive market conditions, meaning about 1,000 employees will be let go. The plant is currently running on one shift, while 1,200 unionized workers are currently laid off.
"This has been a very difficult decision, but this decision in no way reflects on the performance of our Chatham employees and the quality trucks they build," says Steve Keate, president of the company’s truck group. "Obviously, this decision was made only after exploring every available option to achieve the competitive cost structure needed given industry demand."
The Chatham plant was responsible for assembling International 9000i Series Class 8 trucks. That work will be moved to the company’s Escobedo, Mexico assembly plant.
"We are highly confident that this decision will strengthen our ability to be competitive in the heavy truck business. The Escobedo facility will continue to meet the standard of quality that International products are known for and that our customers expect," Keate says.
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