Sustainability is a key focus area for Toyota globally and as such we are proud to present Toyota South Africa Motors’ sixth sustainability report, addressing the past two fiscal years (FY08 and FY09). I want to take a moment to reflect on the conditions experienced over the reporting period, with the two periods in stark contrast with each other. While FY08 was one of growth, FY09 was one of rapid market contraction and recession. During these turbulent times we continually reviewed our cost structures to compete for production volume and ensure the sustainability of the company. These challenges contributed to making Toyota a better, stronger and more vibrant company with a clear view on how to achieve sustainable growth.
As I am of the view that over the next few years there will be moderate sustained growth in market conditions, with subsequent improvement in our sales and production volumes, this will stand the company in good stead. The contraction in the vehicle market in 2009 not only resulted in a significant drop in vehicle production, but also impacted on our environmental performance when expressed in per unit performance.
We are in the process of developing our next Five Year Environmental Action Plan and
these trends will be addressed in our future environmental performance efforts.
As a company we experienced a particularly trying time during the last part
of FY09 when the global recall campaign around some of our core models occurred.
Teamwork and fast action when an issue needs to be addressed are critical ingredients
of the Toyota Way. These core values of our philosophy were illustrated earlier this
year when 52 546 Corolla, Auris and Verso vehicles and 216 Prius vehicles were recalled
as a precautionary measure.
It was a difficult time for us, but our business partners – in this case our dealers – responded excellently with the execution of this campaign, and in only three months more than 90% of the possibly affected vehicles were recalled.
I want to take this opportunity to thank all our dealers, but also to express my appreciation to our customers for their understanding and the trust they showed in our company and its products during this time.
You can be assured that we are fully committed to your safety and satisfaction with our product. We will continue to build on the quality, durability and reliability that are by now synonymous with Toyota.
The same values are also incorporated in our CSI initiatives as we believe good corporate
citizenship is as important to the sustainability of our company as good product. We have
initiated and also support a variety of social responsibility programmes and these activities will be strengthened further in future.
In closing, we take sustainability, in all its forms, very seriously and therefore have also taken major steps to improve the safety culture in our company. The results are positive, but strong leadership will be needed to fundamentally change the culture we want to see in our organisation.
We continue to investigate alternative energy sources as to us it is clear that society
will increasingly demand low carbon emission vehicles and energy efficient production,
and are positioning ourselves to be ready to respond to these expectations.
With the support of our stakeholders we will continue to provide safe and reliable
vehicles to our customers and we invite you to engage with us as we move along the path to achieve true sustainable growth in harmony with people and the environment.
Dr Johan van Zyl
President and CEO,
Toyota South Africa Motors