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ASSOCIATION OF INTERNATIONAL AUTOMOBILE MANUFACTURERS STATEMENT ON DETROIT'S BIG THREE

 WASHINGTON, March 10 /PRNewswire/ -- The Association of International Automobile Manufacturers (AIAM) stated that Detroit's Big Three automakers have embarked on "a brazen effort to have the federal government intervene in the marketplace in behalf of one segment of our industry in order to handicap the fastest growing, innovative and most progressive segment of that same industry." Philip A. Hutchinson Jr., president of AIAM, made this assertion following testimony by the Big Three at a Senate Commerce Committee hearing on the future of the U.S. auto industry.
 Such intervention, he predicted, will, in the long run, have to be paid for by the consumer, in terms of higher prices and restricted choice.
 In a letter to Sen. Ernest Hollings (D-S.C.), chairman of the Senate Committee on Commerce, Hutchinson said, "we hope to be able to testify before your committee." Hutchinson is looking forward to the opportunity to tell the story of the major contributions in jobs and investment made to the American economy by AIAM member companies that produce one-third of the automobiles sold in America.
 Hutchinson went on to blister what he called Detroit's "laundry list" of wishes for government interference in the marketplace. This wish-list, according to Hutchinson, includes quotas on all Japanese nameplate vehicles, whether made in this country or abroad, as well as a 25 percent tariff on European and Japanese minivans and sport- utility vehicles. Hutchinson observed that the Big Three have 80 to 90 percent of the minivan/sport-utility market, yet are seeking a total monopoly at the expense of the American consumer.
 Pointing out that international manufacturers represented by AIAM now produce in U.S. plants approximately 20 percent of all automobiles sold in the United States, Hutchinson asserted that a significant part of the American automobile industry is not being heard in the March 10 hearing on the global and competitive position of the American auto industry. International manufacturers produce more cars in the United States than does Chrysler, a principal witness at the hearing, he asserted.
 Moreover, Hutchinson added, "General Motors and Ford, among the largest of European manufacturers, are treated within the European community and by their host countries on the same basis as other domestic manufacturers." GM, Ford and Chrysler are major shareholders in Japanese automobile companies.
 "It is a recognized fact," Hutchinson stated in a letter to the Senate Commerce Committee, "that the automobile industry is the world's pre-eminent global industry." The Big Three were among the leaders in the move to internationalization and remain among the largest and most competitive global operators. "The truth is," Hutchinson's letter stated, "there are no more purely domestic' auto manufacturers."
 Hutchinson also pointed out that GM is the largest single importer of automobiles into the United States; that Chrysler, in addition to its imports from Japan, also produces all of its fast- selling LH models in Canada, as well as the majority of its Grand Cherokee utility vehicles; and that Ford is a major importer of automobiles from several countries.
 AIAM will file a written statement to the Commerce Committee presenting its view on the benefits accrued to consumers and to the American economy from international competition.
 -0- 3/10/93
 /CONTACT: Kathleen Mordini of the Association of International Automobile Manufacturers, 703-525-9589/
 (GM C F)


CO: Association of International Automobile Manufacturers ST: District of Columbia IN: AUT SU:

KD -- DC015 -- 8550 03/10/93 11:07 EST
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Date:Mar 10, 1993
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