Tesla (NYSE: TSLA) stock price almost 5% after the chief executive Elon Musk said he would sue Alameda County, California, immediately, saying that an “unelected & ignorant” interim health officer is acting contrary to the governor, the President, and the UU Constitution.
The 48-year-old billionaire is among the biggest advocates of the reopening of economic activities in the midst of coronavirus spread.
Tesla was planning to reopen its largest car manufacturing facility on Friday, but local health authorities foiled its plans. The factory has been closed since 23 March due to social distancing orders from Alameda County. The argument continues as the firm suffered a plunge sales in China last month, according to government sources. The stock traded around $815 on Monday morning.
In the lawsuit, Tesla alleged that Local County has ignored California’s governor Gavin Newsom orders to permit transportation and 15 other infrastructure industries to continue work.
In a tweet, Elon Musk has also threatened to move its factory from California to Texas or Nevada immediately.
“Frankly, this is the final straw. Tesla will now move its HQ and future programs to Texas/Nevada immediately. If we even retain Fremont manufacturing activity at all, it will be dependent on how Tesla is treated in the future. Tesla is the last carmaker left in CA,” he wrote.
Tesla stock price has doubled since hitting March lows as the electric vehicle manufacturer has been aggressively chasing its full-year delivery target of 500,000 units despite lockdowns. Tesla’s stock trading value jumped close to 90% since the beginning of this year.
Besides conflict with Local County over reopening, Tesla stock trading also came under pressure on Monday as its Model 3 sedan sales in China plunged 64% to 3,635 units in April from the previous month, bringing the total Model 3 car sales to 19,705 since the beginning of this year, according to the China Passenger Car Association.
Car sales declined sharply in China due to the health crisis, but in an earnings call, Elon Musk said that Tesla is lowering the price of Model 3 in China to increase sales.