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GM CEO says R&D separation is for 'long-term ties to Korea'

All Headlines 11:59 October 29, 2018

SEOUL, Oct. 29 (Yonhap) -- GM Korea Co.'s decision to build a separate R&D corporation will strengthen General Motors Co.'s long-term ties with South Korea, GM Chief Executive Mary Barra said Monday.

GM Korea union recently sent a letter to the GM CEO demanding a meeting to clear up speculation around GM's commitment to South Korea. GM Korea plans to separate its engineering and research divisions into a separate R&D company next month. But the union opposes the plan as they see it as GM's initial step to scale down its manufacturing facilities in Korea.

In a reply, Barra said, "A dedicated engineering services company will benefit from focused management, increased transparency on costs and improved operational efficiency that will make it more attractive for GM to allocate future engineering work to Korea."

The demerger is an important step to allow both the engineering services company and the manufacturing unit to stand on their own as profitable and viable businesses, she said.

The CEO expressed her willingness to visit Korea "at some point soon" for meetings with the union leaders and other key stakeholders.

GM CEO Mary Barra (Yonhap)

kyongae.choi@yna.co.kr
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