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Toyota Taps Japan for Exports to Small Markets: WSJ

Toyota Motor, taking advantage of the yen's persistent weakness, will try to make Japan an export center to meet growing demand for automobiles in small markets around the world, a senior company executive was quoted as saying by the Wall Street Journal.

One big problem in meeting demand for autos in emerging markets is that many, such as those in the Middle East, Africa and Central America, are still too small for Toyota to justify opening plants to serve them, Mitsuo Kinoshita, a Toyota executive vice president, told the newspaper.

"We're committed to producing vehicles where demand exists ... but you can't honor that in a market where we sell only 10,000 vehicles a year," Kinoshita said.

Toyota's solution to that problem, Kinoshita said, is to combine demand in those small emerging markets and produce cars in Japan where there is excess capacity because of the lingering weakness in domestic demand.

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