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Toyota: Another Look At A Recovery Strategy
B
y Myron D. Stokes

The impending fall of the Indonesian government will send shock waves throughout Asia-Pacific. The implications for foreign firms doing business in the region are profound.

In 1999, Professor Yoshio Tabata of the Graduate School of Economics, Osaka University, outlined a recovery strategy for Toyota, in a report which examined the prospects of the auto industry within the ASEAN (Association of South East Asian Nations). Although Professor Tabata did not take into consideration political strife of this magnitude, his report is nevertheless an accurate gauge of conditions at the time of writing and remains very relevant today. The report was produced during the Asian financial crisis that stemmed from the Yen's inexplicably falling against the dollar to the tune of 123.20 as of February 7/8, 1997.

If the coup in Indonesia comes off as a result of the worst case scenario; i.e., forceful take-over, it is likely that the region will be adversely affected from both a political and economic standpoint. The recovery strategy for Toyota - which also alludes to other automakers in the region - including GM, Ford and Mitsubishi, is all but rendered null and void. The ASEAN partners most affected will be Thailand, Malaysia and the Philippines; the other members of the so-called "Big 4" of the Association.

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