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PM Abe, Toyota president plan to meet Fri. ahead of Trump summit

Prime Minister Shinzo Abe and Toyota Motor Corp. President Akio
Toyoda are planning to meet Friday, a government source said Monday.

The gathering, which will also likely involve Chief Cabinet
Secretary Yoshihide Suga, is being arranged ahead of Abe's meeting
with U.S. President Donald Trump on Feb. 10. Trump has criticized
Japan's top automaker for its plan to build a plant in Mexico.

Trump has accused Japan of engaging in trade practices that he
said are "not fair" to American companies, while singling out auto
trade as favoring Japan.

Trump threatened to impose a "big border tax" on Toyota if it
proceeds with its plan to build a new plant in Mexico to produce
Corolla cars for the U.S. market.

In an apparent attempt to counter Trump's criticism, Toyoda has
said his company will make capital investments worth $10 billion in
the United States over the next five years.

Toyota Motor is the largest seller in the U.S. market among
Japanese carmakers, with about 30 percent of its global sales coming
from North America, while having 10 of about 50 global production
bases in the United States.

Japan's largest automaker invested around 230 billion yen ($2
billion) in North America in both fiscal 2014 and 2015. It also plans
further investments of more than 320 billion yen in this business
year ending in March. (Jan. 30)