TORONTO (CP) -- General Motors CEO Fritz Henderson said Tuesday a new labour contract with the Canadian Auto Workers is competitive and he hasn't yet decided whether he'll ask the union to reopen negotiations.
"We're going to evaluate that (agreement) relative to what the Canadian government has said and proceed accordingly but we haven't made any conclusions in that sense yet," Henderson said at a press conference in Detroit.
Both the U.S. and Canadian governments said Monday that GM and Chrysler's restructuring plans weren't thorough enough and demanded radical changes.
The Ontario and federal governments said GM will need to get further concessions from the CAW, even though the two parties just ratified a new agreement three weeks ago.
But Henderson said the agreement with the CAW deals with operating and legacy costs and makes the automakers' Canadian plants competitive with both its own U.S. plants and non-unionized plants.
"The changes that were made in our Canadian agreement really made them fully competitive," he said.
Henderson added that he is still waiting to hear exactly what the government would like to see in a new labour agreement before he makes any decisions.
He also said the company will commit to maintaining a manufacturing presence in Canada.
"It's a commitment we would willingly make, because in fact this has been a great operation for us," he said.
CAW president Ken Lewenza flatly rejected a demand for more labour concessions Monday, saying heading back to the bargaining table won't change the economic climate or the structural problems plaguing the industry.
GM's problems include a massive overhang of so-called legacy costs, including pension and health-care commitments for retirees.
Lewenza said the CAW is prepared to discuss ways to cut legacy costs, including the possible creation of a union-run trust that would manage health benefits for retirees, but that issue isn't going to be solved at the bargaining table.
On Tuesday, Ontario Premier Dalton McGuinty said the automakers have more work to do and he is asking the companies, unions, part suppliers, retirees and auto dealers to get their costs even lower.
GM employs just over 10,000 CAW members at an assembly complex and two parts plants in Southern Ontario.