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Toyota Targets Myanmar Among New Emerging Markets for Expansion

Toyota Motor Corp., the world’s largest automaker, plans to expand in Myanmar, Cambodia and Kenya as part of its push to attract first-time buyers and get about half of global sales from emerging markets.

Toyota plans to work closely with its Daihatsu Motor Co. unit to develop compact cars for emerging markets, Executive Vice President Yasumori Ihara said at a briefing in Nagoya, Japan, today.

“Compared with North America, Europe or Japan, where buyers are mostly replacement buyers, it’s mostly first-time buyers in emerging markets,” said Ihara, who is in charge of Toyota’s emerging-markets business. “It’s where the future growth is.”

Toyota and other foreign automakers are expanding in developing countries, where increasing numbers of consumers are becoming rich enough to afford cars for the first time. Nissan Motor Co., Japan’s second-largest automaker, will introduce its first Datsun model this month in India, after reviving the marque as a budget brand for emerging markets.

Toyota counts China, Southeast Asia, India and Brazil as its key emerging markets, Ihara said at the briefing, held to introduce senior management after a reshuffle by President Akio Toyoda in March.

On Prime Minister Shinzo Abe’s economic policies, Executive Vice President Nobuyori Kodaira said the weaker yen has created a “good” business environment.

Toyota is reviewing its forecasts for global sales and production for the 2013 fiscal year, Kodaira said today in Nagoya, without being more specific.

-- Editors: Chua Kong Ho, Terje Langeland

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