Toyota Motor President Fujio Cho has said that Toyota may post its fourth consecutive record earnings this business year because of cost reductions and stronger overseas sales, in remarks reported by Bloomberg.

``We're hoping this year will be a little better than last year,'' said Cho at a press gathering in Tokyo. ``But we have to consider uncertainties in the economy and currency exchange fluctuations.''

Toyota, is forecasting a dramatic rise in sales for 2003 after winning increased shares of the major US, European and Japanese markets during 2002.

Toyota forecasts its worldwide sales will rise 5% in 2003 to 6.5 million (Toyota 5.79 million, +5%; Daihatsu 630,000, +5%; Hino 70,000, +17%). It expects group domestic sales to rise 3% to 2.3 million while overseas sales increase 6% to 4.19 million.

Toyota also plans to increase overseas production in 2003 by 15% to 2.5 million vehicles. Domestic production is forecast to fall by around 1%.

Bloomberg also reported that Toyota has also brought forward the date by when it aims to have a 10% market share in China to 2008 from 2010. Cho reportedly added that China's vehicle market would reach 4 million units by 2008.
 

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