Inflexible unions bear the greatest blame for Toyota Australia’s decision to cease making cars in Australia by the end of 2017, according to a Manufacturers’ Monthly poll.
Our poll asked – “What is the main reason behind Toyota’s decision to stop manufacturing in Australia?”
32.2% of respondents blamed unions, while high labour costs came in second with 23.3%.
Other responses (in order) were: Free Trade Agreement / Low cost imports (20.42%);Insufficient government support (10%); Small domestic market (8.64%); and the High Australian Dollar (5.76%).
Interestingly, the company specifically denied the union had anything to do with the decision.
Responding in a statement to a claim by Treasurer Joe Hockey that the union was to blame, Toyota Australia said -
“The market and economic factors contributing to the decision include the unfavourable Australian dollar that makes exports unviable, high costs of manufacturing and low economies of scale for our vehicle production and local supplier base.
“Together with one of the most open and fragmented automotive markets in the world and increased competitiveness due to current and future Free Trade Agreements, it is not viable to continue building cars in Australia.”
The poll attracted 383 responses, 362 of which were cast in Australia.