Alerts

Toyota and Suzuki Linked to Burmese Dictators

May, 12 2008 Share

Japanese Auto Companies in Burma

  • Toyota Tsusho--part of the Toyota Group of companies--is involved in a joint venture with the totalitarian Burmese military and the Suzuki Motor Corporation, manufacturing and supplying vehicles that may be used to repress and torture the Burmese people.
  • Factory workers in Burma paid 11 to 12 cents an hour, $5.31 a week.
  • Six activists attending a labor rights workshop sentenced to over 20 years in prison.

Toyota Group

Toyota Industries Corporation
Aichi Steel Corporation
Jtekt Corporation
Toyota Auto Body Co. Ltd.
Toyota Tsusho Corporation  <---
Aishin Seiki Co. Ltd.
Denso Corporation
Toyota Boshoku Corporation
Towa Real Estate Co. Ltd.
Toyota Central Research and Developments Laboratories Inc.
Kanto Auto Works, Ltd.
Toyoda Gosei Co. Ltd.
Toyota Motor Corporation <---

Toyota Tsusho, a large holding company which is part of the Toyota Group, is involved in a joint venture with the Burmese military regime and the Suzuki Motor Corporation manufacturing and selling vehicles which may be used to repress the Burmese people.  Toyota Tsusho and Suzuki are working in partnership with the Myanmar Auto and Diesel Engine Industries (MADI), which is a military government-run enterprise. 

Especially now, with the military junta pursuing the ridiculous charade of a constitutional referendum meant to cement its power, as an estimated 100,000 people are dead or missing following the devastating May 3 cyclone, with another 1.9 million people homeless, without food, and at risk of cholera, typhoid and dysentary epidemics, we must ask, why in the world do Toyota and Suzuki continue to support the Burmese dictators?

Toyota Motors' link to Toyota Tsusho is clear.  Not only is Toyota Tsusho part of the Toyota Group, but Toyota Motors owns 21.57 percent of Toyota Tsusho, while Toyota Industries ownes another 11.12 percent, bringing Toyota's combined ownership to one-third.  There is also a revolving door policy, as Toyota Motors and Toyota Tsusho share high level management and Board members.  Moreover, sales to the Toyota Motor group accounted for over 16 percent of Toyota Tsusho's total business in 2006.

  • Today, 54 million Burmese people are stripped of their human rights and are the target of extreme and cruel abuse by the military dictators.
  • In Burma, the highest paid private sector factory workers earn just 11 to 12 cents an hour.

11 to 12 cents an hour
88 to 96 cents a day
$5.31 a week
$23.00 a month
$276 a year

  • Outside the factory sector, urban workers are earning five to nine cent-an-hour wages.  Public school teachers are paid two cents an hour.
  • The military government has declared the Federation of Trade Unions in Burma a "terrorist group."  Six activists attending a labor rights workshop in Rangoon on May 1, 2007, have been sentenced to between 20 and 28 years in prison.
  • Forced labor, including the exploitation of children, continues in Burma, as do extrajudicial killings, disappearances, rape and torture.
  • More than 30 people were shot dead and 3000-plus arrested during the September 2007 pro-democracy protests.
  • Nobel Peace Prize winner and National League for Democracy general secretary Aung San Suu Kyi remains under house arrest.

Suzuki's Joint Venture in Burma

Key Information: 

Myanmar Suzuki Motor Co., Ltd.
Block No 23 Plot 476C Mogoke St, Yangon, Myanmar

Telephone: (95) 1591303
Fax: (95) 1591302

Executives: Junichi Miyazaki, Managing Director

Employees: 50

Suzuki's Stake: Owned 70% by Suzuki Motor Corporation and 30% by Myanmar Automobile & Diesel Engine Industries

 

Especially Now-- Ask Toyota and Suzuki to immediately sever all ties with the repressive Burmese military--since their current joint venture is only helping prop up the dictators.

LETTER TO TOYOTA & SUZUKI

To: Mr. Seiichi Sudo, President and Chief Executive Officer
Toyota Motor Engineering & Manufacturing North America (TEMA)
25 Atlantic Avenue
Erlanger, KY 41018

tel: (859) 746-4000  fax: 859.746.4190 
email: supplierdiversity@tema.toyota.com

Dear Mr. Sudo:

I urge you to immediately sever all ties to the repressive military dictatorship in Burma, since your joint venture with Myanmar Auto and Diesel Engine Industries (MADI)--a military government enterprise--is only helping to prop up the dictators.  It is also likely that the vehicles you are manufacturing with the Burmese military are being used to repress Burma's 54 million people.  Please let me know what your company intends to do.

Sincerely,

 

To: Rick Suzuki, Chairman
American Suzuki Motor Corporation
3251 E. Imperial Hwy.
Brea, CA 92821-6795

tel: (714) 996-7040 fax: 714.985.0887

Dear Mr. Suzuki:

I urge you to immediately sever all ties to the repressive military dictatorship in Burma, since your joint venture with Myanmar Auto and Diesel Engine Industries (MADI)--a military government enterprise--is only helping to prop up the dictators.  It is also likely that the vehicles you are manufacturing with the Burmese military are being used to repress Burma's 54 million people.  Please let me know what your company intends to do.

Sincerely,

Links

Note:  The National Labor Committee will soon release a report on Toyota documenting serious labor rights abuses in Japan.