Mr. Shigeru Shoji
Happy New Year!
I hope everyone had a great start of a new year.
Last year, Japan’s economy has stepped up its pace of recovery, thanks to the vigorous “Abenomics” policies of the Abe Administration. At the same time, however, the hike in the Consumption Tax rate to 8 percent in April created all kinds of impacts, and for the auto industry, it was a year of being tossed around by the last-minute increase in demand up to March and the reactionary decline in April onward.
For the imported car market as well, the impacts of the backlash decreases from April were huge, but with great support of our customers, combined with the aggressive introductions of new models by our member companies, we were able to achieve decent results. Now I see that the base for imported cars in Japan is spreading step by step.
This year marks the 50th anniversary of our Association. I would like to express my appreciation to our customers and all the others concerned who have supported the growth of the imported vehicles over the past five decades. Seizing on this milestone, we will look back on the developments of imported cars in the past 50 years, present the new concepts for the future and introduce latest technologies, while taking every opportunity to actively promote overseas brands to further penetrate them toward the 44th Tokyo Motor Show to be held in fall.
With regard to our activities, under the guidance of the ministries concerned, and in coordination and collaboration with other associations involved, we will continue working on the promotion of the International Whole Vehicle Type Approval (IWVTA) and the internationalization of various schemes in the areas of safety and environment, standards and certification, and taxation, as part of our efforts to deliver the attractive models and technologies of overseas brands to the customers in Japan as quickly as possible.
As their traditional custom, Japanese people have adopted excellent technologies and products from all over the world. We are determined to increase options of both four-wheelers and two-wheelers for the Japanese customers by broadly providing the “products of the world’s renowned brands”, developed through the culture and histories of other countries and equipped with innovative technologies in the areas of safety and environment, contributing to the stimulation of the country’s motor vehicle market, and in turn growth of the economy as a whole, through the sound development of the imported car sector
I would like to ask for your understanding and continued support.