US President-elect Donald Trump and Vice-president elect Mike Pence have reportedly reached a deal with United Technologies (UTX) to keep up to 1,000 jobs at Carrier Corp air conditioner plant in Indiana, which is owned by UTX.
Carrier had previously announced plans to move production from a factory in Indiana to Mexico, which would put around 1,400 individuals out of work in the area.
The company tweeted saying, "We are pleased to have reached a deal with President-elect Trump & VP-elect Pence to keep close to 1,000 jobs in Indy. More details soon."
This is viewed as a victory for the president-elect who promised during this election campaign that he would keep jobs in the United States. At the time, he had particularly rebuked Carrier for shipping jobs overseas. The message resonated with white working class individuals throughout the Rust Belt.
Trump took to Twitter on Tuesday (29 November) and said, "I will be going to Indiana on Thursday to make a major announcement concerning Carrier A.C. staying in Indianapolis. Great deal for workers!"
Trump, Pence and officials of the company are expected to give out some of the terms of the deal on Thursday, Reuters reported. State officials from Indiana were reportedly involved in the talks but it is not yet clear what inducements the state government made to persuade Carrier to keep jobs at the plant.
Robert Reich, a liberal Democrat who served as secretary of Labour in Bill Clinton's administration, told New York Times, "I think it's pretty clear Carrier did this because the public relations cost to them was far greater than the short-term savings. Even though it's political theater, these are real people and the longer they are employed at Carrier, the better."
In February, Carrier announced it planned to close the air conditioner factory in Indiana, taking with it 1,400 jobs. It said a further 700 jobs would be cut in another plant in Huntington, in northeast Indiana. Trump had vowed to keep jobs in the US by completely withdrawing from trade agreements and levying tariffs on foreign-made goods.
Joe Donnelly, a Democratic Indiana senator, praised the announcement but said "there are at least two other companies currently planning to move Hoosier (Indiana) jobs out of the country. We need to change our laws to encourage companies to grow here at home."