Ford has been forced to shut down operations at its two Victorian plants, standing down 1800 employees until at least next Wednesday.

The move comes after the financial collapse of supplier CMI Industries, left the car manufacturer without sufficient parts to continue production.

Anna Fleetwood reports.


CMI workers gather outside their workplace locked out for almost a week after their employer, now in the hands of receivers, failed to pay its rent.

The lockout has halted production at Ford’s Victorian factories at Broadmeadows and Campbellfield, with the last of workers sent home this morning.

Vox 1: “Well we’re down to four days production as it is here, so with this it’s not going to help.”

VOX 2: “We can’t cope with this situation actually for a long time.”

But all is not lost receivers McGrath Nicol are challening CMI’s landlord in Federal Court to reopen the plant possibly as early as next week.

However, even if the Court supports the reopening of the CMI premises, it may not mean a return to normal production.

Matt Byrnes, Administrator: “There may be redundancies and if there are we’ll work closely with the union.”

If an agreement can’t be reached, the Australian Manufacturers Workers Union says the situation will be dire for both Ford and CMI workers, because many live from paycheck to paycheck and are unlikely to find new work without relocating.

It is estimated the shutdown of CMI may have a flow on affect to other automotive based industries.

Anna Fleetwood, QUT News.