Weeks after General Motors CEO Mary Barra declared U.S. trade uncertainty will “eventually” affect the automaker, GM North America President Alan Batey opened up on the automaker’s thoughts over current situations with the North American Free Trade Agreement and China.
On NAFTA, Batey told Automotive News in an interview published Monday that “there’s lots of uncertainty.” He called the automaker’s supply chain like a “Rubik’s Cube” and said anytime the company hears something, GM evaluates the effects and reports back to the Trump administration to explain its findings.
Batey doubled down on GM’s stance that the automaker is in favor of a modernized NAFTA agreement that is “good for North America.”
“An exit from NAFTA, we don’t think is going to be good for the U.S. It’s not going to be good for the industry,” he said.
On China, the executive noted the country is more important than ever. China is the world’s largest auto market, while the U.S. is number two. Batey said GM hopes both countries can reach a position that’s beneficial to the U.S. and China. New tariffs imposed on China will affect the Buick Envision, which is imported from China. The 25 percent tariff could raise the crossover’s price by $8,000.
He admitted some decisions are simply out of GM’s hands and said, “We’re focused on what we can control and running the business on a proactive basis.”