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FORD OFFICIAL URGES COOPERATION

 FORD OFFICIAL URGES COOPERATION
 WASHINGTON, April 30 /PRNewswire/ -- Industry and government


must increase cooperation if the United States is to remain globally competitive, said Allan D. Gilmour, executive vice president of Ford Motor Company (NYSE: F), and president of the Ford Automotive Group.
 Speaking at the annual SAE Government-Industry Meeting, Gilmour said the era of U.S. economic dominance has ended -- and so must complacency.
 "We may not be on the road to second-rate power status, but neither can we take for granted any longer our first-rate power status," he said. "Now we'll have to work for it, and it is a mutual challenge.
 "From our businesses and industries, we need world-class products and services offering the best quality, the best value and the highest level of customer satisfaction," Gilmour said. "We need a commitment to improve in everything we do. And we need total dedication to doing whatever it takes to remain globally competitive.
 "From government, we need a policy environment that places high value on global competitiveness, a government that considers the impact of its actions on our industrial base and a government that recognizes the new and increasingly global challenges to our economic way of life," he stated.
 Gilmour noted that the automobile business has advanced to the forefront in the challenge to merge social goals with global competitiveness specifically in the areas of trade, government regulation, and new technologies.
 On trade, Gilmour's major concern is the chronic trade imbalance with Japan. Automotive trade is the biggest part of the problem -- accounting for 75 percent of the 1991 U.S.-Japan deficit.
 "What's at work is an apparent national economic policy in Japan that targets certain industries worldwide and makes exports and trade surpluses primary goals of that policy. And when such a policy causes these incredible imbalances year after year, something's wrong," he declared.
 Gilmour noted that government must play a role in resolution of the problem.
 "We need a policy commitment from government that demands fair trade, and that simply refuses to allow the injurious practices of others to continue," he said. "I'm not saying that we should protect bad products, or bad people, or bad plants, or bad management. But I am saying that our products and people and plants need a chance to compete fairly in a global trading system that is equitable and which provides all trading nations the opportunities to share the benefits of such a system."
 In the area of regulation, Gilmour said there is no debate on the desirability of lessening the social costs associated with personal transportation, but sometimes there are disagreements on how to reach objectives.
 "If our manufacturing base is worth preserving -- as it surely is -- we will have to pay more attention to how our unilateral actions position us vs. foreign competitors," he said.
 "We ought to review the entire regulatory approach. The goals should be consistent with global competitiveness, cost-effectiveness and a coherent approach to reaching multiple objectives," he added.
 On technologies, Gilmour said cooperation between industry and government is imperative.
 He further indicated that electric vehicles and other alternatives must be pursued vigorously because of potential benefits to the environment and energy conservation, and because of the competitive advantage that someone stands to gain for doing it right.
 -0- 4/30/92
 /CONTACT: Bill Day of Ford, 202-962-5366/
 (F) CO: Ford Motor Company ST: District of Columbia, Michigan IN: AUT SU:


SM -- DE009 -- 4908 04/30/92 12:01 EDT
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Publication:PR Newswire
Date:Apr 30, 1992
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