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TOYOTA EXECUTIVE DISCUSSES CHANGING AUTO INDUSTRY

    CEDAR RAPIDS, Iowa, Aug. 5 /PRNewswire/ -- A Toyota executive speaking here today discussed the many changes which have taken place among U.S. and Japanese automakers over the past decade.
    Speaking to approximately 350 business and government leaders at the annual Priority One Chamber of Commerce meeting, John McGovern, senior vice president, Toyota Motor Sales (TMS), U.S.A., said there is "constant, irreversible change" in the world and auto industry.
    "Forty years ago, the United States dominated the world economy, accounting for 40 percent of global Gross National Product (GNP)," noted McGovern.  "Today, thanks to an explosion in global trade, we have a smaller piece of global GNP, but the overall 'pie' is much larger.  The auto industry has changed as well, from the products we sell to the make-up of the industry."
    He pointed out that more than 30 years ago, a handful of car companies based in Detroit built 80 percent of the vehicles sold in the world, and Japan's automakers were minor league players.  Now, the Big Three's U.S. plants build about 17 percent of the annual global supply of new vehicles.
    In the U.S., Toyota operates two auto manufacturing plants.  At Toyota Motor Manufacturing (TMM) in Georgetown, Ky., some 4,700 Americans  build Camry sedans and wagons, four-cylinder engines, axle assemblies and other parts.  When its expansion is complete, TMM will employ more than 6,000 people.  At New United Motor Manufacturing, Inc. (NUMMI), a Toyota/General Motors joint venture in Fremont, Calif., some 4,200 Americans build Toyota Corollas and compact pickup trucks and Geo Prizms.
    "Including TMM and NUMMI, Toyota employs nearly 16,000 Americans in the U.S.," noted McGovern.  "In addition, some 68,000 people are employed by our 1,400 Toyota, Lexus and Toyota Industrial Equipment (TIE) dealers nationally.
    "Here in Cedar Rapids," he continued, "Toyota employs 120 Americans at Toyota's Insurance Operations Customer Service Center and another 582 people at 18 Toyota and Lexus dealerships in Iowa."
    McGovern added, "Toyota's investment in Iowa tops $1.4 million and nationally exceeds $5.2 billion.  Our Iowa dealers have invested an additional $13.6 million, part of the $4 billion invested in the U.S. by Toyota, Lexus and TIE dealers."
    Change has not just taken place in the United States, but throughout the world, said McGovern.  Through globalization, countries have become interdependent.  For example, he explained, "U.S. exports of goods to Japan reached $47 billion last year, an increase of nearly 30 percent since 1988.  Japan is our second-largest market for exported goods and the largest market for U.S. agricultural products.
    "Last year, Iowans exported more than $500 million in goods to Japan, accounting for 8.5 percent of the goods and services produced in Iowa in 1992.  Of that, almost 80 percent was food products."
    He noted that Toyota's exports from the United States to Japan, Europe and elsewhere continue to increase.  "Last year, we exported more than $2 billion worth of vehicles, parts and accessories, aircraft and other goods."
    As change is inevitable, McGovern concluded, so is Toyota's commitment to further its investment in the United States and local economy.
    -0-             08/05/93
    CONTACT:  Michael Rouse, 310-618-4295, or Mindy Geller, 310-618-5204, both of Toyota Motor Sales, U.S.A. CO:  TOYOTA MOTOR SALES, U.S.A. INC. IN:  AUT ST:  IA


-- LA022 -- X358 08/05/93
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Publication:PR Newswire
Date:Aug 5, 1993
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