GM CEO Dan Akerson said that Detroit’s bankruptcy filing is closely related to the problems which sent GM and Chrysler into bankruptcy in 2009.
“It’s simply a matter of macroeconomics. The (auto) industry generally wasn’t doing well. Many jobs were lost as the result of the restructuring, including our own, and the tax base in large measure evaporated,” said Akerson.
He added that the city’s decision to file for bankruptcy will not have an immediate impact on the automakers, taken from the financial point of view, but this move will make it harder for the city to attract talent.
Akerson and other General Motors executives complained that the U.S. Treasury oversight of GM’s executive pay, which was a condition of the 2009 bailout, made it harder for the automaker to recruit senior level managers. This condition will end when the US Treasury will sell its last GM shares and exit the automaker, probably sometime before April 2014.
“Certainly (it) is something that future prospects will factor into their thinking: ‘Do I want to move to a city that’s bankrupt?’ ” he said.“So the faster we get through this, and the quicker we rebuild, the better for the city and the state and for our industry.”