By THE PULSE NEWS MEXICO STAFF
Nissan Motors announced on Thursday, Dec. 20, that is will lay off 1,000 workers at its Cuernavaca and Aguascalientes plants at the start of 2019.
The announcement, which comes on the heels of the Japanese auto giant’s arrest a week earlier in Tokyo of former Nissan chairman Carlos Ghosn on suspicion that he transferred more than $16 million in personal losses incurred a decade ago to the company, stated that the decision to cut the Mexico workforce was the consequence of a dramatic drop in car sales both in Mexico and the United States.
The majority of the layoffs will be of production line workers, Nissan spokesman Herman Morfin told reporters.
“These layoffs are the direct response to market factors in Mexico, as well as external factors, such as an increase in the cost of raw materials.” Morfin said.
Nissan has three plants in the central Mexican state of Aguascalientes, with more than 8,000 workers and one in Cuernavaca, Morelos, just south of Mexico City, with about 1,000 workers.
In the last 12 months, Nissan’s sales in Mexico dropped by 14.3 percent to just 282,432 vehicles, while production at its Mexican plants fell by 9 percent.
In the United States, the company’s overall sales decreased by 7.6 percent, with sales of the Mexican-made Versa (its most popular vehicle) falling by more than 30 percent.