June 2017

Outline of JAMA Business Activity in Fiscal 2017

Encompassing an extremely wide range of supporting industries, automobile manufacturing is a pillar of the Japanese economy and a key contributor to employment. The automobile industry therefore has a critical role to play in maintaining economic growth and creating the society of the future.

To ensure its sound further development and continued core role in the national economy, the automobile industry should maintain manufacturing foundations, including research and development centers and production centers, in Japan. In fiscal 2017 (ending March 31, 2018), in line with those aims, the activities of the Japan Automobile Manufacturers Association will be carried out on the basis of three leading priorities, namely: creating safe, comfortable and sustainable mobility; invigorating the domestic market; and improving the business environment. Specific related activities that JAMA will engage in are outlined below.

Creating safe, comfortable and sustainable mobility

  • Promoting automated driving
    • While carefully building public consensus, JAMA will promote the implementation and widespread use of automated driving technologies, which not only will be key to achieving safer and more comfortable mobility, but will also enhance the competitiveness of Japan’s automobile industry.
    • In Japan’s graying and shrinking society, and particularly in its depopulating rural areas, automated driving is expected to help resolve various societal concerns by providing independent mobility and efficient freight transport. However, the widespread application of highly automated driving will require society to adopt systems and frameworks very different from current ones. JAMA will continue to work with industry-government-academia research entities in the study of the regulatory and road traffic infrastructures without which advanced automated driving cannot become a practical reality.
  • Achieving safer mobility
    • No efforts are spared by Japanese automakers in the fulfillment of their social responsibility to supply the market with safer products. The aim is to achieve safe and comfortable mobility for all road users including drivers, motorcyclists, pedestrians, and cyclists. In the pursuit of greater road safety, JAMA will proactively promote the use of advanced safety, including automated driving, technologies; increased public awareness of road safety; and improvements in road infrastructure and the road environment.
  • Promoting the wider use of next-generation vehicles
    • Increased environmental protection in road transport is a further challenge to be addressed by the automobile industry. JAMA member manufacturers will work hard to help Japan achieve the greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions reduction targets established by its government under the Paris Agreement, the new worldwide framework for reducing GHG emissions to curb global warming, which came into effect in November last year.
    • In the current global transition to electrification in road transport to achieve environmentally sustainable mobility, Japan’s automakers are continuously advancing their competitiveness in environmental technologies in order to supply the market with high-quality next-generation vehicles.
    • The widespread use of these vehicles also depends on government support in the creation of the electric vehicle-charging and hydrogen-refilling infrastructures required.

Invigorating the domestic market

  • Redefining the Tokyo Motor Show
    • To redefine the Tokyo Motor Show within the context of continuous evolution and thereby increase its global standing is the objective of JAMA, the show’s organizer. Accordingly, JAMA’s vision for the show is to extend the existing values of mobility by transcending traditional industry “borders” and integrating a multiplicity of concepts and technologies from a broad spectrum. The 2017 Tokyo Motor Show will offer a “preview” of what connected mobility will be like in a megacity such as Tokyo by 2020, when the Olympic and Paralympic Games will be held there, and the 2019 edition of the show will build further on this vision.
    • Making a dynamic new start with this year’s edition, the Tokyo Motor Show will in the years ahead provide an exciting, stimulating experience not only to seasoned car and motorcycle enthusiasts but also to novices. This is expected to help invigorate domestic demand.
  • Providing a global showcase at the Tokyo Olympic and Paralympic Games
    • Attracting worldwide attention as well as visitors from every corner of the globe, the 2020 Olympic and Paralympic Games in Tokyo will be a perfect opportunity to display the practical application of Japan’s advanced automotive technologies and present a model mobile society of the future representing the world’s best in terms of safety, comfort, convenience, and environmental friendliness.
    • JAMA intends to optimize that opportunity and in fiscal 2017 will intensify the challenging preparatory work required, which is already underway.
  • Simplifying and reducing the burden of Japan’s automobile taxes on vehicle owners
    • An environment that facilitates vehicle ownership is also crucial to a revitalized domestic market. To that end, reducing the tax burden on purchasers of motor vehicles is imperative. In fiscal 2017, JAMA will be working with the relevant stakeholders to achieve significant revisions in Japan’s automobile-related tax provisions, not only to streamline the tax regime itself but also to reduce the tax burden on vehicle owners.

Improving the business environment

  • Promoting international harmonization of technical regulations and certification
    • As the globalization of the automobile industry advances, internationally harmonized automotive technical regulations and reciprocal recognition of type approvals serve to streamline procedures in and reduce the cost of vehicle development, production and certification through the standardization of design specifications and parts use. JAMA has been and will continue taking a lead in promoting international regulatory and certification harmonization, particularly in emerging markets.
    • Against a backdrop of intensifying international competition in recent years, JAMA member manufacturers will also continue to work together in planning and implementing standardization strategies to benefit the automobile industry as a whole.
  • Promoting economic partnership/free trade agreements
    • The creation of fair business environments through free trade and economic partnership agreements is a matter of vital importance to the Japanese automobile industry, whose operations span the globe. In fiscal 2017, JAMA will continue to work closely with the Japanese government to help promote the establishment of high-quality EPAs/FTAs with countries and regions across the world.
  • Promoting fair and equitable transactions
    • Late last year, JAMA released a voluntary action plan aimed at promoting fair and equitable transactions with suppliers, and at increasing productivity and added value. Through its continuous implementation of this action plan, the automobile industry is looking to create positive economic ripple effects throughout the supply chain and thereby contribute to the further development of the national economy.