Toyota to end car manufacturing in Australia by 2017

The widely anticipated announcement will result in the loss of around 2,500 jobs

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The Independent Online

Australia’s car industry today suffered a hammer blow as Japan’s Toyota became the last big international car company to announce it will stop manufacturing vehicles Down Under because of soaring costs.

Around 2500 jobs will be lost after Toyota said the strong Australian dollar, the high cost of manufacturing and fierce competition meant it was “unviable” to keep making cars in Oz.

Toyota Australia, headed by chief executive Max Yasuda is following America’s General Motors and Ford, which quit last year.

The Australian, a leading business newspaper, warned: “It will mean from 2017, Australia will not have a local car manufacturing industry.”

Fears are mounting that Australia’s economy is unbalanced. The country avoided the global financial crash, sending the Aussie dollar up by half against currencies such as sterling.

Toyota did not ask the Australian government for financial help. But opposition leaders said “the car industry has died” under prime minister Tony Abbott.