Notas ao café…

Toyota City

Posted in notas ao café by JN on Fevereiro 11, 2010

Aislin, «The Montreal Gazette»

A cidade de 420 mil habitantes no leste do Japão está há muito ligada ao sucesso da Toyota. Os habitantes para mostrarem o seu orgulho no construtor em 1959 mudaram o nome da cidade, que se chamava Koromo. Mas agora a cidade mostra a sua preocupação com os problemas que a Toyota vem vindo a ter, como escreve a Time:

[…] In recent months, Toyota City — which boasts Detroit as a sister city — has shared some of the pain felt by its American counterpart. The region is still suffering from what locals call the Toyota shock. After the Lehman bankruptcy, when the worst of the financial crisis bit and the U.S. car market collapsed, Toyota reduced production and shed temporary workers, sending a damaging ripple through the region. The scars are clearly visible on the town’s streets, riddled with closed shops and restaurants. Ryuichi Watanabe, an agent at the local branch of the Able property brokerage, says rents are down some 20% from two years ago, with many apartments lying empty. He worries the worst may be yet to come. “The myth of Japanese quality has crumbled,” he says. “That means less markets and a negative impact on the entire economy.”

Toyota City already gives an impression of a town under siege. Toyota’s giant headquarters building is inaccessible — like a fortress at war. A spokesman for the city wouldn’t grant TIME an interview with officials, saying the government won’t comment on the issues of one company. Toyota employees are keeping their lips tightly sealed as well. Those approached on the streets, their Toyota company IDs clearly visible, politely bow their heads and say they are unable to comment. Only one young employee, who wouldn’t give his name, mutters, “We’re not sure what is going to happen.”

Nate Beeler, «The Washington Examiner»


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