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LatinNews Daily - 20 February 2019

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In brief: Brazil

* US automobile manufacturer Ford has announced the cessation of production at its São Bernardo do Campo plant in the Brazilian state of São Paulo during the course of 2019, as the company has decided to exit the heavy truck business in South America. In a statement, Ford cites “a comprehensive redesign of its global business” amid losses in its South American business as reason for this decision. “We know this action will have a major impact on our employees in São Bernardo and we will be working closely with our stakeholders on the next steps,” president of Ford in South America, Lyle Watters, said. The mayor of São Bernardo do Campo, Orlando Morando, said Ford had not consulted the local authorities nor warned them of its decision. The leader of the ABC union of metalworkers, Wagner Santana, has said that workers will fight to reverse Ford’s decision and has called for a strike to take place in central São Paulo city on 20 February. According to the union, 3,200 direct workers and around 1,000 contractors will be affected by the closure of Ford’s São Bernardo do Campo factory.