Japan–Toyota Motor Corp. President Akio Toyoda on Friday repeated his pledge to maintain domestic vehicle production at 3 million vehicles per year despite the negative impact of the strong yen on exports.
Speaking at an annual shareholders’ meeting at the company’s headquarters, Toyoda and other senior executives defended their policy of keeping more than a third of total production in Japan and pledged to push financial authorities in Tokyo to combat the yen’s rise against the dollar.
“The current exchange rate is very severe for manufacturers like us,” Toyoda said in response to shareholder queries about the company’s competitiveness.
“[But] the Japanese auto industry won’t give up on Japan-based manufacturing and will appeal to the government for help in defending this last bastion,” of the country’s industrial base, he said.
As of 0400 GMT, the dollar was at Y79.04.
Toyota’s CFO acknowledged that current rates are below the 80 yen-to-the-dollar forecast given in the company’s full-year earnings, but he said that Toyota is taking cost-cutting measures to stay in the black.
“We realise there is a fairly big risk that interest rate differentials between the US and Japan could fluctuate going forward, so we are endeavoring to do what it takes to remain profitable even if the dollar is below Y80,” said Satoshi Ozawa, Toyota’s executive vice president in charge of finance. -By Chester Dawson