November 18, 2021

JAMA Forms New United Front for Taking on Change

On November 18, the Japan Automobile Manufacturers Association (JAMA) held an online press briefing to introduce its new executive structure from May 2022.

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TOYODA Akio, Chairman

(President, Toyota Motor Corporation)

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At today’s Board of Directors meeting, we decided on our executive structure for the next term.

At the core of this new organization is a belief that our automotive industry is an industry in which we can all work together. With this in mind, I, myself, have been involved in JAMA’s organizational reform and its responses to numerous crises.
Faced with the COVID-19 pandemic last year, we worked hard with our 5.5 million colleagues to ensure that automobiles would be the driving force behind economic recovery. I believe that the strength of the Japanese automotive industry is that it is a “full lineup” industry that has passenger cars, commercial vehicles, minivehicles, and motorcycles, backed by companies with excellent technologies in all genres.

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However, amid such, each of those companies face unique challenges. For example, to disseminate CASE technologies and services, it will be important to start deployment through commercial vehicles. Also, to seriously strive to achieve carbon neutrality, it is essential to address minivehicles, which collectively support daily lives as the “people’s car” of Japan, and motorcycles, which enrich diversity in mobility.

There is a limit to what one company can do on its own. I believe that we are now in a time in which it is very important to move forward with cooperation among all of us.

Thinking that I would like to see the people who know the most about their respective fields playing leading roles, last year I asked President Katayama of Isuzu, to represent commercial vehicles, and President Hidaka of Yamaha, to represent motorcycles, in roles as vice chairmen.

And this time, in addition to President Uchida of Nissan and President Mibe of Honda, President Suzuki of Suzuki has newly accepted the post of vice chairman as a representative of minivehicles. With this, I believe that we now have a structure for developing together with everyone a “full lineup” automotive industry.

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Although it was difficult to decide up until the very end whether I should accept the request to extend my term of office, our member companies voiced that they would like to continue under the same leader because we are in a time when major changes, such as striving to achieve carbon neutrality, are needed.

I have decided to accept an extension of my term in the hope that my own experience in dealing with crises might be useful in overcoming our current difficult situation. I will do my best for the future of the automotive industry and the future of Japan.

I humbly request your continued support of our automotive industry as we move forward together.

HIDAKA Yoshihiro, Vice Chairman

(President and CEO, Yamaha Motor Co., Ltd.)

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In this era of profound transformation, such as with the advent of CASE and initiatives for achieving carbon neutrality, we are facing many challenges that must be addressed by the whole of Japanese industry.

The motorcycle industry is a global business in which Japanese brands account for about half of the approximately 63 million units in the annual global market. Like the automotive industry, it is a Japanese industry that has competitive strengths, even on the world stage.

We will continue to do our utmost to meet the diverse mobility needs of people by maintaining this competitiveness and responding with our colleagues in the motorcycle industry as well as with those in the automotive industry to the major challenges we now face.

KATAYAMA Masanori, Vice Chairman

(President, Isuzu Motors Ltd.)

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With an overwhelming sense of ownership and a sense of cooperation for resolving social issues, our four heavy-duty vehicle manufacturers have had repeated discussions on firmly fulfilling our social responsibilities, such as the provision of safety and protecting the environment, through our truck and bus products, which form part of the social infrastructure that supports daily life.

With our new executive structure, we are determined to work together with a stronger-than-ever “all Japan” stance and achieve greater innovation.

MIBE Toshihiro, Incoming Vice Chairman

(President and CEO, Honda Motor Co., Ltd.)

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Earlier, Chairman Toyoda mentioned that the Japanese automotive industry’s strength is that it is a “full lineup” industry backed by companies with excellent technologies in each genre. I believe that carbon neutrality is a theme that needs to be addressed by maximizing our full lineup of diversified technologies and approaches undergoing research and development, as well as by maximizing the strengths of each company and field.

We—not only automobile manufacturers, but the entire automotive industry as a whole—will play a leading role in striving with a sense of speed and by leveraging our respective areas of expertise to achieve the very challenging goal of realizing carbon neutrality by 2050.

It very much encourages me that Chairman Toyoda, who has demonstrated strong leadership in resolutely transforming JAMA and bringing the industry together, will continue as chairman. Also, as a vice chairman, I will work hard with others to respond to JAMA’s desire for our industry to be united in making it through this era of profound transformation, which includes among others achieving carbon neutrality.

UCHIDA Makoto, Incoming Vice Chairman

(President and CEO, Nissan Motor Co., Ltd.)

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The strength of the Japanese automobile industry lies in its ability to produce innovative ideas that create new value and in the high level of technology that makes such ideas possible. Each company has thus far grown and developed through friendly competition, making the most of their individuality.

On the other hand, the business environment surrounding us will drastically change going forward. I believe that it is important in such times for each of us to continue to improve our separate capabilities and assume a stance for transcending corporate boundaries to face common challenges together.

I look forward to lending a hand as we work together to rally the Japanese automotive industry and increase Japan’s presence in the world.

SUZUKI Toshihiro, Incoming Vice Chairman

(President, Suzuki Motor Corporation)

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I am extremely happy that a vice chairman has been chosen from the category of minivehicles, as it signifies the high expectations placed on minivehicles in this country. At the same time, I feel a great sense of responsibility.

Collectively as “the people’s car”, minivehicles not only support people’s daily lives but are also expected to contribute to the achievement of carbon neutrality as a form of mobility that can support the last mile of logistics. I look forward to working together with all JAMA members to make proposals and take actions not only for vehicles but also for infrastructure development to achieve carbon neutrality.

Full Archive of Press Conference