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Snyder hails auto "re-consolidation" in Michigan; wants "positive relationship" with Trump

Gov. Snyder and Lt. Gov. Brian Calley at the Detroit auto show.
Sarah Cwiek
Michigan Radio
Gov. Snyder and Lt. Gov. Brian Calley at the Detroit auto show.

Governor Snyder and Lieutenant Governor Brian Calley took in the auto industry’s latest, at Detroit’s annual North American International Auto Show Monday.

“We’re leading the world here” in the “mobility industry,” Snyder said, noting the number of start-ups related to autonomous vehicle technologyat this year’s show.

Snyder also hailed what he called “great announcements” recently that signal the “re-consolidation of the auto industry back in Michigan.”

That includes Fiat-Chrysler’s confirmation this week that it will invest $1 billion in two Detroit area plants; and Ford’s announcement last week that it will invest $700 million in its Flat Rock Assembly Plant as part of a plan to bring 13 electrified cars to market (all come attached to state incentives packages; so far no one will comment on the details of packages, and Snyder again declined to do so Monday).

It’s not entirely clear how much President-elect Trump and his tweets have to do with this timing; some of these “announcements” just added details to previously-announced plans.

“I wouldn’t say it was just about Trump,” Snyder said. “But again, we’re seeing great announcements for Michigan. That’s huge.”

Snyder said he would take a “wait and see” approach when it comes to Trump’s threat to impose tariffs on automakers who continue to move manufacturing out of the U.S. But he said those same automakers are certainly acting with the idea that they will see something from Trump in return.

“When Ford made their announcement, I believe they spoke of their interest in seeing President-elect Trump really create a more investment-friendly environment here with regulatory, tax reform. I think Michigan’s a great role model for that kind of success,” Snyder said.

Snyder also said he wants a “positive relationship” with the incoming President.

“As government, our role is to partner together to give better services to our citizens, including our companies, in terms of creating a great environment for success. And I look forward to having the opportunity to try and build that partnership with the new Trump administration,” he said.

Sarah Cwiek joined Michigan Public in October 2009. As our Detroit reporter, she is helping us expand our coverage of the economy, politics, and culture in and around the city of Detroit.
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