Trump Threatens Toyota With 'Border Tax' Over Mexico Plans

by Katie Little, CNBC and Christine Wang, CNBC /  / Updated 
Image: A group of workers at the Toyota Motor Manufacturing de Baja California on Dec. 13, 2004.
A group of workers at the Toyota Motor Manufacturing de Baja California on Dec. 13, 2004.Mark Boster / LA Times via Getty Images

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In Donald Trump's latest Twitter rebuke of an automaker, the president-elect threatened Toyota Motor Corp. on Thursday with a large border tax if it builds a new plant outside the U.S.

Following the tweet, the company's U.S.-listed shares ticked about 0.7 percent lower, hitting a session low of $120.32.

In response to Trump's tweet, Toyota said in a statement to Reuters that the new Mexican plant will not cut its U.S. employment, adding that it "looks forward to collaborating with the Trump administration to serve in the best interests of consumers and the automotive industry."

The threat about the Japanese automaker's planned new plant in Mexico is just the latest from Trump, who already has gone after two other automakers.

Earlier this week, Trump issued a separate ultimatum to General Motors: Make its Chevy Cruze cars in the U.S. or expect to pay a big border tax.

He has also been pressuring Ford about its own plans for Mexico. Two days ago, Ford announced it was canceling its plans to build Mexican plant, but insisted Trump was not the main factor for the decision.

Related: Ford Cancels Plant in Mexico But Is Still Moving Small Car Production

Toyota announced on Tuesday that it is beginning to move hundreds of jobs out of its northern Kentucky headquarters as part of a nationwide consolidation.

After Trump's tweet Rep. Jeb Hensarling, R-Tex., said on CNBC's "Closing Bell" that he does not favor a border tax. Hensarling, chairman of the House Financial Services Committee, argued the reason jobs are moving out of the United States is because America doesn't have a competitive, simple tax code.

"I prefer carrots over sticks and I prefer tax reform over taxes," Hensarling said on Thursday. "What we need to do is make America the most attractive place to site a business, to grow a business, to create a business."

— The Associated Press contributed to this story. This article first appeared on CNBC.

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