Ford Motor Co. has restarted its plants in Mexico after weeks of shutdown due to the coronavirus, it said Monday.
The automaker offered little detail on exactly when it restarted its four plants in Mexico or how many shifts it would operate, other than to say the restart is gradual.
"The safety of our workforce is our top priority," said Ford spokesman Said Deep, in an email to the Free Press. "Working closely with government, suppliers and union leaders, Ford de Mexico is gradually resuming operations and production under the strictest protocols to keep our employees healthy and safe. We have resumed operations at our four sites."
Mexico's auto industry is working to catch up to the demand by automakers in the United States for supplier parts and in-demand vehicles after falling behind by weeks because of the coronavirus pandemic. Even now, it must restart amid concerns over rising coronavirus deaths and a fragile economy.
Deep said Ford will continue to collaborate with Mexico's government leaders to comply with established health and safety protocols.
Ford is the last of the Detroit Three to restart operations south of the border. There is a lot of interconnection between the Detroit Three and manufacturing in Mexico. The automakers' operations in Mexico build profitable vehicles that are sold in the United States. They also make parts used on cars built at U.S. assembly plants. In some cases, engines that are made at the carmakers' U.S. plants are sent to Mexico for use in vehicle assembly there too.
Here are Ford plants in Mexico:
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