Toyota chief: Car production to stay in Japan

Toyota president Akio Toyoda spoke with CNNMoney's Poppy Harlow about the company's post-tsunami struggle to get factories back online.Toyota president Akio Toyoda spoke with CNNMoney's Poppy Harlow about the company's post-tsunami struggle. Click on image to watch the interview. By Aaron Smith, staff writer


NEW YORK (CNNMoney) -- Toyota president Akio Toyoda said he has no intention of moving more production overseas in the wake of Japan's devastating earthquake and tsunami, but that Japanese factories will need a couple of months to get completely back online.

"At the moment, we have no plan of relocating production activities going on in Japan to other parts of the world," Toyoda told CNNMoney's Poppy Harlow in an interview in Redmond, Wash.

Of the seven million vehicles it produces worldwide, Toyota Motor Co. (TM) manufactures more than half of them outside its home country of Japan, Toyoda said.

"We would like to maintain three million [vehicles], which is currently produced in Japan, to continue to be produced in Japan," he said.

Toyoda said automakers outside Japan were also being affected by the conditions of Japanese suppliers impacted by the disaster. Rolling blackouts triggered by overheating nuclear reactors were among the problems faced by Japanese manufacturers, but he praised the Japanese government for its transparency in updating companies and citizens about conditions.

Toyoda, whose grandfather founded Toyota Motor Co., on Wednesday unveiled a $12 million partnership with Microsoft (MSFT, Fortune 500) to build a digital information and communication system for the Japanese automaker's cars called "telematics." He said the partnership was a "great blossom" for his company.

"To encourage hope in the future, that's what brought me here to Seattle," he said. "Getting our operation back up and running as quickly as possible will pave the way for future with hope. So we are working very hard to that end."

During the interview, Toyoda said it was difficult to leave Japan during its time of crisis. He mentioned that three employees of Toyota dealerships lost their lives from the disaster, along with dozens of family members of Toyota employees.

Thousands of Japanese citizens are dead and missing after the northeastern part of the main island was severely damaged by the earthquake and tsunami on March 11, triggering disasters at nuclear power plantsTo top of page

Frontline troops push for solar energy
The U.S. Marines are testing renewable energy technologies like solar to reduce costs and casualties associated with fossil fuels. Play
25 Best Places to find rich singles
Looking for Mr. or Ms. Moneybags? Hunt down the perfect mate in these wealthy cities, which are brimming with unattached professionals. More
Fun festivals: Twins to mustard to pirates!
You'll see double in Twinsburg, Ohio, and Ketchup lovers should beware in Middleton, WI. Here's some of the best and strangest town festivals. Play
Overnight Avg Rate Latest Change Last Week
30 yr fixed4.27%4.22%
15 yr fixed3.27%3.27%
5/1 ARM3.35%3.48%
30 yr refi4.23%4.20%
15 yr refi3.25%3.25%
Rate data provided
by Bankrate.com
View rates in your area
 
Find personalized rates:
Index Last Change % Change
Dow 17,083.80 -2.83 -0.02%
Nasdaq 4,472.11 -1.59 -0.04%
S&P 500 1,987.98 0.97 0.05%
Treasuries 2.51 0.04 1.83%
Data as of 5:36pm ET
Company Price Change % Change
Facebook Inc 74.98 3.69 5.18%
Ford Motor Co 17.84 0.06 0.34%
Yahoo! Inc 36.17 1.46 4.21%
Apple Inc 97.03 -0.16 -0.16%
Bank of America Corp... 15.62 0.10 0.64%
Data as of 4:02pm ET

Sections

Would you pay $7.76 for a Big Mac? The Economist's iconic Big Mac index is a lighthearted way to compare currencies and buying power around the world. More

The government says health insurers are charging lower premiums, thanks to a provision in Obamacare. More

In New York City, business travelers have ditched meals at Starbucks in favor of Seamless takeout, according to a new report. More

Chinese buyers are now the biggest international players in the U.S. housing market and some states are seeing billions of dollars in real estate deals as a result. More

Market indexes are shown in real time, except for the DJIA, which is delayed by two minutes. All times are ET. Disclaimer Morningstar: © 2014 Morningstar, Inc. All Rights Reserved. Disclaimer The Dow Jones IndexesSM are proprietary to and distributed by Dow Jones & Company, Inc. and have been licensed for use. All content of the Dow Jones IndexesSM © 2014 is proprietary to Dow Jones & Company, Inc. Chicago Mercantile Association. The market data is the property of Chicago Mercantile Exchange Inc. and its licensors. All rights reserved. FactSet Research Systems Inc. 2014. All rights reserved. Most stock quote data provided by BATS.