Photo: Gage Skidmore

After a widely publicized sit-down with President Trump, the “Big Three” automotive manufacturers all commented after their meeting at the White House on Tuesday. The discussion’s key agenda was no secret: bring manufacturing back to the U.S. and create more jobs.

President Trump (@realDonaldTrump) tweeted about the meeting just prior, saying, “Will be meeting at 9:00 with top automobile executives concerning jobs in America. I want new plants to be built here for cars sold here!”

The potential 35% percent tax Trump has suggested on vehicles imported from Mexico was also on the minds of General Motors, Fiat Chrysler Automobiles (FCA) and Ford, but there were no direct comments from any of the manufacturers about this specifically. Though Ford has denied Trump was the reason it cancelled its plant in Mexico, it is clear that Trump’s insistence on bringing more jobs to the U.S. is on the minds of automotive companies who sell vehicles in the U.S.

Multiple news outlets reported the meeting lasted roughly an hour, and CNN reported on Field’s response shortly after the meeting, saying, “As an industry we’re excited about working together with the president and his administration on tax policies, on regulation and on trade to really create a renaissance in American manufacturing,” Fields said.

General Motors Chairman and CEO Mary Barra made a formal statement after the meeting, saying, “We had a very constructive and wide-ranging discussion about how we can work together on policies that support a strong and competitive economy and auto industry, one that supports the environment and safety,” said Barra in a press release. “The U.S. is our home market and we are eager to come together to reinvigorate U.S. manufacturing. We all want a vibrant U.S. manufacturing base that is competitive globally and that grows jobs. It’s good for our employees, our dealers, our suppliers and our customers.”

FCA also sent out a formal statement following the meeting, with CEO Sergio Marchionne noting the shared vision FCA has with the current administration:

Following a meeting today at the White House, Sergio Marchionne, Chief Executive Officer, Fiat Chrysler Automobiles N.V., reiterated that President Donald J. Trump’s desire to build a strong manufacturing base in the United States is a common goal shared by FCA US.

“I appreciate the President’s focus on making the U.S. a great place to do business. We look forward to working with President Trump and members of Congress to strengthen American manufacturing.”

In total, FCA US has committed investments of more than $9.6 billion in its U.S. manufacturing facilities and created 25,000 new jobs to date since 2009.

We will certainly hear more about the future of the automotive market and President Trump’s plans moving forward, but for now it’s positive to see some sort of open dialogue.

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