Production has stopped or is slated to stop at 42 out of 44 U.S. auto-assembly plants as the coronavirus blunts new car and truck demand and states curb nonessential business activity.
The closures will affect about 164,000 workers and mark a dramatic expansion from the 15 plants that were idled as of March 20, according to an Alliance for Automotive Innovation email to U.S. lawmakers on Monday, which Bloomberg News reviewed.
The trade association, which represents almost every carmaker that does business in the U.S., said it wants to highlight the impact the virus has had on the sector as Congress negotiates an economic-stimulus package expected to total as much as $2 trillion.
Unlike airlines and other industries that have asked for grants to prop up employment, auto manufacturers and parts suppliers have sought other government measures to weather the crisis. The alliance and the Motor and Equipment Manufacturers Association, which represents the parts makers, last week asked top lawmakers to delay the June 1 implementation of supply-chain rules contained in the United States-Mexico-Canada Agreement on trade. They also asked for several tax-relief measures, including a deduction or credit for companies providing paid sick leave and a temporary employer payroll-tax holiday.
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