JAPAN: Toyota chairman visits Russia for talks on local production - reports

By just-auto.com editorial team | 9 October 2003

Toyota Motor chairman Hiroshi Okuda on Wednesday talked with former Russian prime minister Sergei Kirienko, now president Vladimir Putin's official envoy to the Volga Federal District, to exchange views on Toyota's possible car production in Russia, Kyodo News reported, according to Dow Jones.

The news agency said the meeting between Okuda and Kirienko took place in Nizhny Novgorod, the hub of Russia's car industry in the Volga River region, according to the office of the presidential envoy.

During his stay in Japan in late August, Kirienko requested Okuda to fly to Russia to study possible production of Toyota cars in Russia or a tie-up with Russian car manufacturers, officials at the office reportedly said.

Toyota has said it is studying the feasibility of starting passenger car production in Russia, Dow Jones noted.

According to Dow Jones, Kyodo, citing industry sources, reported that Toyota will step up the feasibility study on the basis of the results of Okuda's on-the-spot inspection of the Russian car industry.