The Senate Inquiry into General Motors’ Holden Operations in Australia will hold public hearings today. Australian Automotive Dealer Association (AADA) CEO, James Voortman, will appear and answer questions on behalf of Australia’s franchised new car Dealers. For a copy of the opening statement, click here.
“The last six months have been a very difficult time for many Australians and for Holden Dealers it has been made worse by the actions of General Motors,” said Mr Voortman.
“GM needs to be held to account for the way it misled Dealers and for its failure to offer Dealers fair and reasonable compensation. It also needs to answer to the Australian taxpayers which provided it with billions in subsidies,” he said.
“GM’s actions saw both sides of politics combine to launch this Senate Inquiry, it has led to the ACCC pressuring them into mediation and has drawn pleas from Federal Ministers for them to participate in arbitration,” Mr Voortman said.
“We are asking the committee to recommend a strengthening of Australia’s automotive franchising regulations to protect local businesses against the heavy-handed behaviour of some car Manufacturers.”
“One of the key elements required to level the playing field is the ability for binding arbitration when mediation fails,” he said.
“While Holdens will no longer be sold in Australia, 1.6 million vehicles remain on our roads and GM need to demonstrate how they will fulfill their consumer law obligations and do the right thing by consumers and the servicing Dealers,” he said.
The Senate Inquiry is scheduled to deliver its report into Holden on 12 November, 2020.