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December 26, 2007




Governor Barbour says designation reflects company’s confidence


(JACKSON, Mississippi) – Toyota Motor Corp.’s designation of its Mississippi plant as a worldwide model of environmentally-friendly operations is a dramatic statement of confidence in the Mississippi project, Governor Haley Barbour said today.


“Toyota has designated its Blue Springs plant as a model that will emphasize the importance of nature in creating production sites that harmonize with their natural surroundings,” Governor Barbour said. “This puts Toyota and Mississippi on the leading edge of a totally new concept in building automotive manufacturing plants that can truly live in harmony with the environment and local community.


“This decision speaks volumes for Toyota’s confidence in Mississippi. As a people who care about preserving the incredible beauty of Mississippi’s natural environment we are very pleased Mississippi will be the site of choice for Toyota’s most state-of-the-art and environmentally friendly plant, a global benchmark for the automotive industry,” Governor Barbour said.


The company on Christmas Day announced the designation of four production subsidiaries as model plants for carrying out “sustainable plant” activities with nature as an integral part. The model plant chosen for the Americas is Toyota Motor Manufacturing, Mississippi, Inc. (TMMMS), a cutting-edge plant currently under construction in Blue Springs and intended to begin operation around 2010. In addition to introducing an innovative line featuring Toyota’s Highlander sports utility vehicle, tree-planting activities are also being promoted at the site.


Toyota said it aims to create and operate such production sites with three perspectives in mind:


1. Achieving groundbreaking environmental performance by introducing innovative technology and kaizen (improvement) activities


2. Reducing CO2 by using renewable energy, including biomass and natural energy sources, such as solar power and wind power


3. Contributing to the local community and conserving the environment by planting trees.


The Blue Springs plant will join Toyota’s Tsutsumi Plant in Japan, at which sustainable plant activities began in July; the other designated plants are in the United Kingdom, France and Thailand. Toyota said it will formulate initiatives for each plant giving consideration to the specific characteristics of each particular region and plant.