WASHINGTON - Ford chief Jim Hackett on Wednesday ramped up his warnings about the tariffs imposed by President Donald Trump, saying his company was seeing profits slashed by $1 billion.
Hackett said the global automaker could face more damage if the trade confrontations were not resolved quickly.
“The metals tariffs took about $1 billion in profit from us,” Hackett said in an interview on Bloomberg Television. “If it goes on longer, there will be more damage.”
Trump in June imposed steep tariffs on steel and aluminum and has hit $250 billion in Chinese products with tariffs, prompting retaliation from US trading partners and raising costs for many industries.
The company earlier this year estimated materials costs would be $1.5 billion over 2017, which had already seen a jump.
And in the July earnings report Ford said it lost $500 million in China in the latest quarter due in part to the tariffs.
General Motors likewise warned the current trade wars should cost it $1 billion this year, mainly due to rising input costs.
Ford recently announced it was scrapping plans to import the compact Focus model from Chinese plants into the US market due to the tariffs.
Joseph Hinrichs, Ford’s executive vice president for global operations, said this week the company was speeding up plans to build some models in China since it was becoming less attractive to export amid the trade tensions.
He also said he did not see any easy resolution to the trade dispute between the United States and China.