September 7, 2018

Chairman’s Comment on the 2018 Hokkaido Eastern Iburi Earthquake
Akio Toyoda, Chairman Japan Automobile Manufacturers Association, Inc.

The earthquake that struck in Hokkaido, Japan, on September 6th has caused the deeply distressing loss of many lives as well as extensive damage to property. The Japan Automobile Manufacturers Association (JAMA) mourns those who have perished and extends its heartfelt condolences to the bereaved families and all the other victims of this disaster.

The earthquake has also caused setbacks for auto dealers and parts suppliers and other partners in the automobile industry, representatives of which are and will be going to the affected areas for on-site situation assessment (in other words, “to the source to determine the facts” as it is said in Japanese), in keeping with industry principles, and to assist in regional recovery activities with local citizens. For its part, JAMA will make every effort to address the challenges involved for the industry, placing priority on the protection of human life and regional recovery.

In addition to the many fatalities and the destruction spawned by this disaster, dozens of people remain missing. I would like to express my profound sympathy to their families and other loved ones as they confront this heart-wrenching reality. The succession of natural disasters that have hit Japan over the past few months --- from the massive flooding and landslides triggered by the torrential rains that fell primarily on western Japan in early July to the destruction caused by typhoon Jebi only days ago --- have left many thousands of people struggling in their aftermath. For all of us at JAMA and throughout the Japanese automobile industry, the victims of these events are foremost in our minds as we determine how to respond most effectively to this grievous state of affairs.