EU raises Japanese auto quota
TOKYO - Japan and the European Union have agreed to a quota of 1,184,000 for Japanese vehicles exported to the European Union, up from the 1.14 million Japan exported to the region in 1998 but below the revised 1998 quota of 1.19 million set last October.
The quota is based on a forecast that European Union sales in 1999 will total 15,326,000, down 1.51 percent from 1998.
This is the last year of the bilateral quota. Europe is scheduled to open its market fully to Japanese imports in 2000.
The two sides also agreed to set individual country quotas at 100,000 for France, down from a 1998 quota of 111,100; 190,000 for the United Kingdom, unchanged; 117,300 for Italy, up from 107,000; 83,700 for Spain, up from 70,000; and 47,000 for Portugal, up from 43,000. Specific quotas are not set for other EU countries.
FINNEGAN IS CEO AT GMAC
DETROIT - General Motors has named John Finnegan chairman of General Motors Acceptance Corp. and executive vice president of GM. Finnegan, 49, had been president of GM's finance arm. He will retain that title in addition to his new duties, and will report to GM Chairman Jack Smith.
'This promotion recognizes the increasing importance of the GMAC organization to GM,' Smith said. Over the past three years, GMAC has expanded its auto lending operations into six new countries. GMAC also is expanding its home mortgage operations.
HONDA PRICES S2000
TOKYO - Honda Motor Co. priced its much-anticipated S2000 sports car at ¥3.38 million, or about $28,170 at current exchange rates. It aims to sell 500 a month in Japan.
SATURN GROWS IN JAPAN
TOKYO - Saturn Japan has signed its 17th retailer, which will open the 22nd store selling Saturn cars in Japan in October.
AMIC Corp., which also sells construction equipment and Rover vehicles, will open a store in Maebashi City in Gumma Prefecture, north of Tokyo.
Saturn Japan President Keith Wickes said the company is focusing on expansion in the greater Tokyo area, as well as other major metropolitan regions, now that it has retailers on each of Japan's four major islands.