Japanese Minister says Toyota recall may affect economy

0 CommentsPrint E-mail Xinhua, March 2, 2010
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Japan's minister for economy, trade and industry Masayuki Naoshime said on Tuesday that there was a possibility that the current crisis at Toyota Motor Corp., which has led to a recall of millions of vehicles across the world, could have an impact on Japan's economy.

"I have heard that Toyota has felt an adverse impact on the number of sales it has made. This could have an impact on the Japanese economy, we need to watch the situation closely," said Naoshima who used to work for Toyota.

Naoshima also expressed a fear that the fallout from the Toyota crisis could have an impact on small businesses that supply parts for the giant automaker.

The company announced Tuesday that in Aichi Prefecture, the home of Toyota, 43,059 nonregular workers are expected to have lost their jobs between October 2008, generally considered to be the start of Japan's economic downturn, and the end of March 2010.

In recent months, Toyota has recalled millions of vehicles worldwide because of faults in the brakes and accelerators on some of its models. The recalls have been a PR disaster for the company, with media across the globe questioning whether cars produced by Toyota are safe and whether its management did all they possibly could to prioritize their customers' interests during the recall.

On Monday, it emerged that Toyota has been repairing another 1 million vehicles on a voluntary basis in the United States and China over an oil leak in some of its models. The automaker said that it had notified owners of the vehicles that they can go to dealerships to get the repair done, and that the fault would not leave drivers in any danger.

Meanwhile, in China on Monday, Toyota President Akio Toyoda apologized over the massive recall and vowed to make his company's cars safer in the future.

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