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Obama's vow to recoup bailout cash

President Barack Obama says the US government will recover all the money his administration used to bail out the car industry last year.

In an interview on the ABC television's talk show "The View," Obama said the car industry "tells a good story" of his administration's efforts to rescue the economy. He planned to highlight this with stops at three car plants over the next several days, including two stops in Michigan on Friday.

The White House said Obama's proclamation on recouping funds refers only to the $60 billion (£38.4 billion) his administration spent rescuing the car industry, not the $17 billion spent under the Bush administration.

In a report on the status of the industry, the White House said failing to rescue GM and Chrysler would have led to the loss of nearly 1.1 million jobs.

The car industry has added 55,000 jobs in the year since the automotive bankruptcies, making it the strongest year of job growth in the industry since 1999.

White House officials pointed to several signs of progress: plans by GM and Chrysler to skip the typical summer shutdown of several plants to meet demand for certain vehicles and the addition of shifts at GM, Chrysler and Ford Motor plants.

The report notes that Ford posted a $2.6 billion profit during the second quarter, its fifth straight quarterly profit, while GM reached a net profit of $865 million in the first quarter of 2010, its first since 2005.

The report estimates that Detroit car makers could add 11,000 new jobs before the end of 2010.

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