TMC chairman: ALJ one of Toyota’s best distributors

Updated 20 February 2014

TMC chairman: ALJ one of Toyota’s best distributors

Takeshi Uchiyamada, chairman of the Board of Directors of Toyota Motor Corporation (TMC), has highlighted the significance of Crown Prince Salman’s state visit to Japan, adding that the royal visit reflected the strong relations between Saudi Arabia and Japan.
“The relations between Saudi Arabia and Japan are very close, and this visit is evidence that confirms the depth of the bonds of this relationship at various levels and in different areas,” Uchiyamada said in statement on the occasion of the crown prince’s visit.
Uchiyamada explained Toyota’s history in Saudi Arabia, a deep-rooted relationship that dates back to more than half a century with the establishment of diplomatic relations between Saudi Arabia and Japan.
He also pointed out that Abdul Latif Jameel Company (ALJ) is one of the best distributors in Toyota’s global network. ALJ is one of 14 companies around the world (including Toyota owned companies) that has won the Excellence Award in after-sales service during the past three years.
Uchiyamada also said that ALJ is the largest independent distributor of Toyota and Lexus vehicles in the world with the largest independent retail network, employing over 12,000 people in after-sales alone.
The TMC chairman also commended ALJ’s community services. “Since 2003, ALJ Community Initiatives (ALJCI) has launched numerous global and regional programs in art, education, poverty alleviation as well as job creation initiatives which have helped create tens of thousands of job opportunities annually in Saudi Arabia. ALJCI has become a role model in Community Initiatives for other companies to follow around the world,” he added.


US trade offensive takes out WTO as global arbiter

Updated 10 December 2019

US trade offensive takes out WTO as global arbiter

  • Two years after starting to block appointments, the US will finally paralyze the WTO’s Appellate Body
  • Two of three members of Appellate Body exit and leave it unable to issue rulings

BRUSSELS: US disruption of the global economic order reaches a major milestone on Tuesday as the World Trade Organization (WTO) loses its ability to intervene in trade wars, threatening the future of the Geneva-based body.
Two years after starting to block appointments, the United States will finally paralyze the WTO’s Appellate Body, which acts as the supreme court for international trade, as two of three members exit and leave it unable to issue rulings.
Major trade disputes, including the US conflict with China and metal tariffs imposed by US President Donald Trump, will not be resolved by the global trade arbiter.
Stephen Vaughn, who served as general counsel to the US Trade Representative during Trump’s first two years, said many disputes would be settled in future by negotiations.
Critics say this means a return to a post-war period of inconsistent settlements, problems the WTO’s creation in 1995 was designed to fix.
The EU ambassador to the WTO told counterparts in Geneva on Monday the Appellate Body’s paralysis risked creating a system of economic relations based on power rather than rules.
The crippling of dispute settlement comes as the WTO also struggles in its other major role of opening markets.
The WTO club of 164 has not produced any international accord since abandoning “Doha Round” negotiations in 2015.
Trade-restrictive measures among the G20 group of largest economies are at historic highs, compounded by Trump’s “America First” agenda and the trade war with China.
Phil Hogan, the European Union’s new trade commissioner, said on Friday the WTO was no longer fit for purpose and in dire need of reforms going beyond just fixing the appeals mechanism.
For developed countries, in particular, the WTO’s rules must change to take account of state-controlled enterprises.
In 2017, Japan brought together the United States and the European Union in a joint bid to set new global rules on state subsidies and forced technology transfers.
The US is also pushing to limit the ability of WTO members to grant themselves developing status, which for example gives them longer to implement WTO agreements.
Such “developing countries” include Singapore and Israel, but China is the clear focus.
US Commerce Secretary Wilbur Ross told Reuters last week the United States wanted to end concessions given to then struggling economies that were no longer appropriate.
“We’ve been spoiling countries for a very, very long time, so naturally they’re pushing back as we try to change things,” he said.
The trouble with WTO reform is that changes require consensus to pass. That includes Chinese backing.
Beijing has published its own reform proposals with a string of grievances against US actions. Reform should resolve crucial issues threatening the WTO’s existence, while preserving the interests of developing countries.
Many observers believe the WTO faces a pivotal moment in mid-2020 when its trade ministers gather in a drive to push through a multinational deal — on cutting fishing subsidies.
“It’s not the WTO that will save the fish. It’s the fish that are going to save the WTO,” said one ambassador.