Toyota group's local sales hit $500M in first half

Posted at 09/06/2012 3:44 PM | Updated as of 09/06/2012 3:44 PM

MANILA, Philippines - Local sales of the Toyota Group reached $500 million in the first half of the year, putting the company on track to meet its full year target of $1 billion. 

Toyota Motors Philippines vice president Roque Rommel R. Gutierrez said the group is confident they will meet this year's target of 20% growth, after a drop in sales in 2011.

"Our sales this year may reach close to $1 billion after it declined last year," Gutierrez said. 

In the Philippines, the Toyota group has 14 units, which has invested some P20 billion in the last 2 decades and created more than 40,000 jobs.

Gutierrez said Toyota Autoparts Philippines (TAP) sales may reach $300 million this year. In the first half, TAP sales already hit $120 million. 

"The projected increase in sales is partly because we've experienced some slowdown last year, so we're just recovering from it," Gutierrez said. 

Sales of autoparts fell in 2011 on slow orders from overseas after floods in Bangkok and the earthquake and tsunami in Japan. 

Takahiro Iwase, Toyota Motor Asia Pacific chief regional officer said the company is mulling fresh investment in TAP, but did not give details. 

"I strongly believe that the Philippines auto industry has high growth potential. Rising incomes and skilled manpower will lead to increased motorization and demand for cars," he said. 

"Toyota will cooperate with the government to develop and implement the auto roadmap as we are comitted to continue and expand local production," he added.

TAP is currently exports 95 percent of its annual output to assembly factories in 10 countries.