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Trump issues stern warning to Toyota

Donald Trump has threatened to impose hefty fees on Toyota, should the Japanese carmaker go ahead with its plan to build Corolla vehicles for the US market at a plant in Mexico. It's not his first attack on automakers.

US President-elect Donald Trump on Thursday targeted Japanese carmaker Toyota, threatening to impose hefty import tariffs, if Toyota built its Corolla cars for the US at a facility in Mexico.

The world's largest automaker by sales announced in April 2015 that it would build a new factory in Mexico. Media reports said the company was willing to invest roughly $1 billion (960 million euros) in the plant.

"Toyota Motor said will build a new plant in Baja, Mexico, to build Corolla cars for US. NO WAY! Build plant in US or pay big border tax," Trump said in a post on Twitter.

Intimidation policy?

Toyota President Akio Toyoda said on Thursday the automaker had no immediate plans to curb production in Mexico, preferring to wait until after Trump's inauguration on January 20 before deciding whether to make any changes.

Watch video 01:32

Trump's way: Made in the USA

Carmakers in the US have also been slammed by the president-elect for building vehicles in lower-cost factories south of the border which he said cost American jobs.

Pressure to curb that production intensified this week after Ford Motor scrapped plans to build a $1.6-billion assembly plant in Mexico after Trump harshly criticized the investment.

Trump had also fired a broadside at General Motors, warning it could become subject to tariffs on Mexico-made cars for the US market.

hg/jd (Reuters, AFP)

 

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