INDIANAPOLIS - United Technologies Corp. (NYSE: UTX) leaders say the decision to move manufacturing operations from Indiana to Mexico is the best way the company can remain competitive in the long-term. In meetings with Indiana Senators Dan Coats and Joe Donnelly, company executives said the move was made necessary by the "steady migration of the company's competitors and suppliers to Mexico, as well as ongoing cost and pricing pressures."

UTC says, after the transition, Carrier will have more than 6,000 U.S. employees, including 400 in Indiana.

In a statement, Coats said United Technologies Corp. leaders told him that the move of manufacturing operations from Indianapolis and Huntington to Mexico is a result of "burdensome federal regulations" and a high corporate tax rate. Senator Joe Donnelly (D-IN), who also met with executives, calls the company's claim that it doesn't see a path forward in Indiana "disappointing and frustrating."

Coats says the 2,100 affected workers "deserve better than the treatment they received."

Coats says he expressed disappointment in how United Technologies Corp.has handled the move and pushed for "a full repayment of all taxpayer dollars the company received." He says the company should have talked to Governor Mike Pence or other state leaders to see if anything could be done to keep the jobs in Indiana.

UTC announced plans last month to move manufacturing operations from Carrier Corp. in Indianapolis and Huntington-based United Technologies Electronic Controls Inc. to Mexico. Pence met with company leaders last week, and said they agreed to maintain 400 jobs between the two subsidiaries and return $1.2 million in tax abatement to the Metropolitan Development Commission in Indianapolis. He says the company also agreed to return $382,000 in state training grants.