UPDATE: Ford Australia To Close Shop in 2016

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By Esther Tanquintic-Misa | July 30, 2012 5:08 PM EST

That Ford Australia recently slashed ­production to about 33,000 cars a year and laid off 440 employees are by means already telltale signs it will soon be padlocking the doors of its plants permanently in Australia.

"Ford will still be here selling cars but it will not be manufacturing cars in Australia," PPB Advisory partner Stephen Longley, a receiver for collapsed automotive supplier companies, told The Australian Financial Review.

In fact, "I don't expect them to be here after 2016 when the Euro 5 standards kick in."

Ford Australia's demise has actually been a forecast long in the making made by the industry's very own companies and experts.

For one, the sector's third largest player from local shores has been on life support for years, continuously strained under pressure from falling tariffs, more competitive imports and not to mention an increasingly growing cautious consumer.

"They are going to be closing within two to three years," James Kaias, director of automotive and defence manufacturer Abcor Group, said in the report.

"That is the consensus. I think it is pretty obvious," Mr Kaias said, noting that Ford Australia will close as soon as the Falcon nears the end of its life.

Ford Australia is one of three remaining car makers in Down Under after Nissan left in the early 1990s and Mitsubishi ended local production in 2008, the report said.

Mr Longley likewise revealed that components makers have completely written out Ford Australia from their business plans four years from now.

"It's going to be a slow death, or nearly a death by 1,000 cuts for some of the suppliers," he told ABC local radio. "There's been no announcements. The expectation though, is that this will happen.

"And without any announcements, all the people I deal with in the supply chain are assuming this is going to be the case. So decisions are being made on the basis that Ford Australia will definitely not be around from 2016."

Read more:

Automaker Ford Cuts More Than 400 Jobs in Victoria, Australia

Australia Made "Wrong" Decision on Cash Injection - Hockey

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