Hotai Motor Co (和泰汽車), the local dealer for Toyota Motor Corp, said yesterday it was unaware of a reported move by Toyota to shrink its domestic production and move part of it overseas following the March 11 earthquake in Japan.
The Chinese-language Economic Daily News reported yesterday that Toyota was mulling such a shift after the devastating quake affected its ability to supply key auto parts to the world.
The report said such a move could benefit the carmaker’s Taiwanese assembly partner, Kuozui Motors Ltd (國瑞汽車) — a local joint venture between Toyota and Hotai — as Kuozui might receive more orders from Toyota.
However, Hotai said it was not aware of Toyota’s reported move and that it has not had any discussions with Toyota on the matter.
Meanwhile, an industry source who requested anonymity said that it was “not very likely” for Toyota to do so.
The source said that since Toyota was one of the most important businesses in Japan, which is rebuilding after the earthquake, Toyota has considered its public image and vowed to keep its production at home.