A storage safe manufacturer is reportedly planning to shut down two Illinois factories and move to Mexico in response to President Trump’s tariffs on Chinese metal imports.
Stack-On Products will close its two Chicago-area plants in October and lay off 153 people, according to the Chicago Tribune.
Al Fletcher, human resources director for the manufacturer’s Las Vegas–based parent company, told the newspaper that the company decided to relocate the operations to Mexico after Trump announced tariffs on steel and aluminum, as well as other products, from China.
“The operation is really not profitable,” Fletcher said. “Mr. Trump is part of this.”
Stack-On has operated in Chicago — its only two U.S. plants — for four decades, according to the Tribune, which added that the company already has factories in Mexico and China.
Fletcher told the newspapers that some of the employees will be given the option to relocated to El Paso, Texas, across the border from its Stack-On factory.
The company is one of a growing list that has announced layoffs, closures or price increases as a result of Trump’s tariff disputes with other countries.
The president announced massive tariffs on aluminum and steel imports earlier this year, and has engaged in a back-and-forth with China, as well as angered key U.S. allies like Mexico, Canada and the European Union, over the taxes.
He has repeatedly complained that other countries are treating the U.S. as a “piggy bank” that’s being “robbed” by their trade policies.
But his decision to impose steep tariffs has prompted other nations to retaliate, and many U.S. industries have expressed concerns that the levies will destroy their market.
The Department of Agriculture last month announced a $12 billion plan to aid farmers hurt by Trump’s trade battles.
BY AVERY ANAPOL – 08/15/18