LANSING, Mich. (Michigan News Source) – Governor Gretchen Whitmer announced that she and Australia’s Minister for Infrastructure, Transport, Regional Development and Local Government Catherine King have updated a deal where both countries plan to collaborate on automotive industry initiatives.
The two signed an updated Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) last week. The first MOU between Michigan and Australia was signed in 2018.
“Michigan is excited to work alongside Australia to continue growing our automotive, maritime, and sustainable forest bioeconomy industries, fight climate change head-on, and collaborate to make mobility cleaner and safer,” Whitmer said. “This MOU will build on Michigan’s longstanding, shared heritage with Australia and help us to collaborate to create opportunities for safe, equitable and sustainable transportation options.”
In addition, the Michigan Department of Transportation will send a delegation to ITS Australia (Intelligent Transport Systems) in August.
It is unclear how much tax payer money will be used in funding this initiative.
This is not the first time Whitmer has lured foreign companies to Michigan. Currently, there is pushback from three communities where many residents are upset over Chinese companies planning to set up shop with taxpayer money.
The first is in Big Rapids where Chinese Communist Party-affiliated Gotion plans to build an electric vehicle battery plant. Ford has announced a similar deal with CATL in Marshall. A “Mega Site” is set to break ground in Eagle Township.
The Michigan Economic Development Corporation has authorized hundreds of millions of dollars in tax payer incentives to bring those companies to Michigan.