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PM Morrison slams GM Holden for wasting $2b of taxpayer money

Published: (Updated: ) in Australian News by .

‘They let the Holden brand wither on their watch’

Prime Minister Scott Morrison has slammed General Motors, accusing them of wasting taxpayer money by failing to keep the Holden brand viable.

At a press conference Mr Morrison said he was "very disappointed" that the Holden brand would no longer exist after a raft of government measures were brought in to save the business.

"Over many years more than $2 billion was directly provided to General Motors for the Holden operations," said Mr Morrison.

READ MORE: The one reason why Holden failed in Australia

"I'm disappointed, not surprised, but I think the fact they took money from Australian taxpayers for all those years just to let the Holden brand wither on their watch."

This afternoon General Motors announced it was retiring the Holden Brand by the end of 2021 as the American-based automaker phased out production of right-hand-drive vehicles.

The announcement results in the loss of 600 local jobs, with only a skeleton staff to remain behind to service Holden's ongoing warranty obligations to customers.

Mr Morrison pledged to support the workers who will be offered redundancy packages in the coming months.

"We will look after the workers who have been left behind, we will work with them to make sure they will be able to move into new industries as I have already seen in South Australia," said Mr Morrison.

"At the end of the day it showed throwing all that taxpayer money at them they were never going to respect that."

Government “going green” with hybrid fleet

In December last year the government upgraded it's Comcar fleet of locally-produced Holden Caprice sedans to luxury BMS's and Hybrid Toyotas.

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In 2017 the last Australian made vehicles – the venerable VF Commodore – rolled off the line at Adelaide's Elizabeth plant.

Currently Holden imports General Motors vehicles into Australia from its sales headquarters in Port Melbourne.

Holden is also supported by a national parts distribution centre, a global design studio and its traditional car proving ground at Lang Lang.

Source: 9News

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