General Motors sent out a release this morning saying the United Auto Workers have reached a tentative agreement on a new national labor contract, covering approximately 74,000 represented employees. The agreement is subject to UAW member ratification. Hopefully this means the recent strike will be extremely short.
The tentative agreement includes a memorandum of understanding to establish an independent retiree health care trust, as well as other changes to the national agreement. Following ratification, implementation of the memorandum of understanding is subject to approval by the courts, and satisfactory review of accounting treatment with the Securities and Exchange Commission.
"There's no question this was one of the most complex and difficult bargaining sessions in the history of the GM/UAW relationship," said Rick Wagoner, GM Chairman and CEO. "I'd like to thank UAW President Ron Gettelfinger, UAW Vice President Cal Rapson, and their bargaining team for their leadership and hard work in negotiating the agreement."
The national agreement paves the way for General Motors to improve its manufacturing competitiveness, while also providing the basis for maintaining and strengthening its core manufacturing base in the United States.
"This agreement helps us close the fundamental competitive gaps that exist in our business," Wagoner said. "The projected competitive improvements in this agreement will allow us to maintain a strong manufacturing presence in the United States along with significant future investments."