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Ford’s Mulally Takes Shots at Japan

CEO wants Japan locked out of free trade talks.

by on Mar.26, 2013

Ford CEO Alan Mulally labels Japan the "most closed automobile market in the world."

Citing what he described as the ongoing manipulation of its currency, Ford Motor Co. CEO Alan Mulally said he does not want to see Japan allowed to enter into a new round of Asia-Pacific free trade discussions.

Mulally and other Detroit industry leaders have been pushing to prevent their primary Asian rivals from benefiting from proposed measures that would expand, among other things, automotive trade in one of the world’s fastest-growing regional markets.

The Ford chief executive laid out some fierce criticism of Japanese economic policies, pointing out that the yen has slid about 8% against the American dollar since the beginning of the year, something that he and other critics don’t feel is justified by current economic conditions.

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Mulally, a former Boeing senior executive, also expressed his frustration during a stop in Bangkok over what he felt was Japan’s ongoing efforts to restrict foreign automobile brands, calling the country, “the most closed automobile market in the world.”


India Ready to Overtake Japan in Car Sales

But can infrastructure keep up?

by on Mar.15, 2012

Hoping to tap into the booming Indian market, Ford recently went to Delhi to reveal the new Figo.

Already humbled by years of economic stagnation and last year’s devastating earthquake and tsunami, Japan’s continuing decline as one of the world’s leading auto markets is likely to be taken down another peg.

A new study by IHS Automotive predicts that sales in India will reach 4.88 million by 2016, which would move that emerging nation past Japan, which the consulting firm forecasts will see automotive sales of just 4.51 million that year.


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Japanese auto sales have been running at barely half their peak rate during the Asian nation’s bubble economy and show little sign of recovery.  In fact, IHS expects the market’s sales to again taper off to just 4.25 million by 2020.  Japan recorded 4.87 million new vehicle sales in 2010 but saw that number dip to 4.13 million the following year, much of that due to lost production and other problems caused by the March 2011 natural disaster.