Japanese automakers boost us deficit

Japanese Automakers Boost US 2006 Deficit

In 2006, deficit in the United States hit a record since Americans necessitate more goods from China, more oil from different foreign sources and greater vehicles from – JAPAN. Yes, Japanese automakers are significant factors that caused the 2006 US deficit.

Said fact has fueled the Detroit’s automakers as well as their allies to urge the Bush Administration to act on the matter with aggressive stance against the Japan’s currency. This clamor is anchored on the fact that Detroit’s automakers have been weakened by the Japanese car makers.

According to the report released by Commerce Department, US deficit rose by 6.5 percent last year to $763.6 billion. It marked the fifth year in a row of deficit increases. The trade gap with China also rose 15 percent to $232.5 billion. Foreign oil reliance increased to $302.5 billion from $252 billion a year ago.

With regards to vehicle importation, cars, trucks and auto parts accounted for $149.4 billion of 2006 US deficit. The figure is 6 percent more than the 2005 numbers. Auto parts importation from Japan also increased by 14 percent to $60.2 billion. The significant increase is attributed to the soaring sales of Japanese cars and trucks, which were up by 23 percent to 2.1 million vehicles. The leading automaker that boosted the deficit is Toyota Motor Corp. and its divisions – Lexus and Scion.

“The consequences of these persistent and massive trade deficits include not only failed businesses, displaced workers, lower real wages, and rising inequality, but also permanent devastation of our communities,” said the letter from House Speaker Nancy Pelosi, D-Calif., and Rep. Sander Levin, D-Royal Oak, among others.

Toyota, the world’s second largest automaker, is also the eighth largest company around the globe. Last year, the total revenue of the automaker amounted to $185 billion. This is one of the reasons why analysts in the industry predict that Toyota will take over General Motors’ post as the world’s largest carmaker any time this year. The goal of Toyota for 2007 is to produce 9.4 million vehicles to compete with GM’s production.

Toyota has established a solid reputation for quality around the globe. Aside from Japan and the United States, Toyota has built manufacturing and assembly plants in Australia, Canada, Indonesia, Poland, South Africa, Turkey, the United Kingdom, France, Brazil, and recently Pakistan, India, Argentina, Czech Republic, Mexico, Malaysia, Thailand, China, Vietnam, Venezuela, and Philippines.

The automaker has invested considerable amount of research into cleaner-burning vehicles like hybrids with its Hybrid Synergy Drive technology. Also, Toyota has successfully road-tested its new RAV4 powered by hydrogen fuel cell.

Other Toyota divisions are also etching positive milestones in the industry. Its Lexus luxury brand, which was launched in the US in 1989, has expanded to Europe and Oceana. Lexus vehicles are sold in over 40 countries worldwide. The division is also working on improving its standing in the American auto market. J.D. Power and Associates, a consumer ratings firm, has named Lexus most reliable automotive brand for 12 consecutive years. In 2006, Consumer Reports also named Lexus the most reliable brand in its survey. Lexus is continuously nurturing its commitment to quality, which can be reflected from its cold air intake catalog, sophisticated engines, and its stunning lineup.

Scion, the other division of Toyota, is famed for its lineup. Scion xA and xB, which are both powered by a 1.5L DOHC I4 engine, are well accepted in the territory. Scion tC, unveiled in 2004, also comes with bountiful promises.

Analysts in the industry concur that Toyota, Honda and Nissan, are making a gradually improving eminence in the United States.

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