Exports
by Japan’s top three car producers dropped slightly in January but there was a
compensating increase in overseas production according to figures released this
week.

Toyota Motor exported 111,348 vehicles, down 7.6 percent from January 2000.
Shipments to North America were down but production in Europe (mostly in the
UK) and North and South America increased.

Production of the Yaris, a popular model previously exported from Japan, began
at a new French plant this month and this is likely to further reduce Japanese
exports this year.

Nissan exports were down 4.5 percent to 42,382, the fifth consecutive monthly
fall, but worldwide production increased 11.7 percent. Nissan also saw a decline
in North American shipments in January but exports to Asia and the Middle East
rose.

The switch from Japanese to British production of the Almera sedan in 2000
accounted for reduced exports to Europe.

Honda exports nosedived 21.8 percent to 29,683, the sixth consecutive monthly
decline. However, like its rivals, Honda is increasing production in both North
America and the UK.