© Reuters. 2020 Ford Explorer cars are seen at Ford’s Chicago Assembly Plant in Chicago

DETROIT (Reuters) – Ford Motor (NYSE:) and the United Auto Workers union on Wednesday announced a tentative agreement for a new labor deal, allowing the No. 2 U.S. automaker to avoid a strike like the one that cost its larger rival General Motors (NYSE:) about $3 billion.

The union turned to Ford to negotiate a new four-year agreement after ratifying a contract last week with GM following a 40-day U.S. strike that shut down almost all of GM’s North American operations.

“The pattern bargaining strategy has been a very effective approach for UAW and its members to secure economic gains around salary, benefits and secured over $6 billion in major product investments in American facilities, creating and retaining over 8,500 jobs for our communities,” UAW Vice President Rory Gamble, head of the union’s Ford department, said in a statement.

Ford confirmed the deal in a statement, but declined further comment.

UAW leaders from the various U.S. plants will meet on Friday to approve the deal, which will then be sent to the 55,000 members at Ford for final approval, a union spokesman said.

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2019-10-30