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Toyota moves to improve viability in Australia

31-08-2010
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Toyota moves to improve viability in Australia

Toyota Australia is planning to modify work practices at its local plant in a bid to increase productivity and improve viability.

The company has unveiled plans to change its Workplace Agreement terms and conditions to get rid of “outdated and uncompetitive practices and allowances” that increase the company’s labour costs.

The Agreement is still subject to the review and discussions with the union and employees in the coming weeks.

At a meeting in Sydney last week Toyota Australia President and CEO Max Yasuda and Executive Vice President and COO Dave Buttner sought the support of union officials to amend the terms and conditions.

“Everyone is working extremely hard to ensure Toyota’s long term manufacturing future in Australia, but we must do more if we want to move towards being globally competitive, said Mr Yasuda.

“The support of our employees is needed to modernise the work practices at our plant to increase productivity and improve our competitiveness, he said. “Our continuous improvement towards global competitiveness is crucial to securing production of the next generation vehicle and maintaining our export program.”

It was vital for Toyota to effect changes to the terms and conditions in order to achieve its targets.

“We need to improve our productivity and reduce the cost of each of our locally built vehicles by $3,800 by 2018, Mr Yasuda said. “Although we have made progress, the speed of change has not been fast enough.

“We need to take urgent action because we are now seeing gaps in our transformation plans. We must develop detailed plans to close these gaps if we want to remain at the negotiating table for future investments.”

Toyota management will work with its 2,500 manufacturing employees and the union to explain the need to modernise work practices.

Employees will vote on the proposed variation of the terms and conditions on December 5, with an announcement expected the following day.

 

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