Japan needs to reduce the size of its auto industry before joining free trade talks, says Ford

Article by Christian A., on May 6, 2012

A top Ford Motor Co. official thinks that Japan has to make its auto industry smaller before it could be permitted to enter regional free trade talks with the countries in the Asia-Pacific region, including the U.S. When interviewed by Reuters, Steve Biegun, Ford's vice president for international government affairs, said that the market in Japan is the “most protected automotive market in the developed world."

Biegun said that while Ford is strongly supportive of the proposed Trans-Pacific Partnership pact, the automaker hopes to guarantee that just “the right members” are included in this agreement and that they achieve a good quality free trade pact.

He added that Japan’s auto industry is “hugely overweight” and would heavily rely on massive exports unless it restructures. Two days before Biegun was interviewed, President Barack Obama met with Japanese Prime Minister Yoshihiko Noda to talk about Tokyo's interest to join the TPP talks. Japan had first expressed its interest six months ago.

Ford’s protest to permitting Japan to enter the talks is indicative of the challenges that Obama faces, particularly those posed by presumptive Republican presidential nominee Mitt Romney in Michigan and Ohio. It’s likely that the outcome of the November election would be influenced by what goes on in these two U.S. auto-producing states. In 2011, Japan built around 9.3 million cars and trucks.

The Japanese Automobile Manufacturers Association website said that it has around 4.6 million total exports, including 1.5 million to the U.S. The U.S. is one of the most open markets in the world, with only a 2.5% tariff on cars. Biegun said that maintaining this tariff is vital for its small-car production in the U.S. to stay profitable. [source: Reuters]

Topics: japan

If you liked the article, share on:

Comments

Recommended

Here comes Blue Arrow, a Porsche 911 (991) Turbo S tuned by Edo Competition that is even quicker and faster than the 911 GT2 RS. Moreover, it is definitely the...
by - July 24, 2017
Earlier this year, Ford had already begun deliveries of the Ford GT. However, the company has been experiencing some delays at their facility in Canada. This means that the next...
by - July 24, 2017
BMW has given the 2018 1-Series a facelift, and they have just released a ton of new photos and a couple of videos to show us what it’s got. Nevertheless,...
by - July 24, 2017
When Chevrolet came out with the 2018 Equinox last September, the facelifted model was offered in a diesel option for the first time, plus it weighed much less at 400...
by - July 23, 2017
If you are a huge fan of the hardcore GTS version, you probably know that the closest you could get to that model is the upgraded model of the M4...
by - July 23, 2017
Facebook

Youtube Channel

Tip Us
Do you have a tip for us?
Did you film an important event?
Contact us
Newsletter
Subscribe to our newsletter!
Subscribe
Galleries