Ford Motor Co. Chairman Philip Caldwell yesterday reiterated his company's opposition to a proposed joint manufacturing agreement between General Motors Corp. and Toyota, saying the combination would "bring dominance to the auto industry."
"The GM-Toyota deal appears to challenge all the past interpretations of the antitrust laws and, if approved, would appear to be a violation of the antitrust laws as interpreted before," Caldwell told a luncheon meeting of the National Press Club.
GM and Toyota have proposed a joint venture to build a new small car in California, using parts produced in the United States and Japan. The proposal is currently being scrutinized by the Federal Trade Commission for possible antitrust violations.
Caldwell claimed that the GM-Toyota venture would provide more jobs for Japan than for American workers and complained that the agreement did not do enough to ensure that automobiles destined for the U.S. market were being produced here. "As I see the GM-Toyota situation, we really haven't done much," he said. "We haven't really brought Toyota to this country, because they won't do the production--but GM has gone to Japan for half the production."
Although Caldwell said that several years of rebuilding in the wake of the twin shocks of gasoline-price increases and recession has improved the health of the industry, he warned that further recovery is dependent upon the United States taking additional steps to make itself competitive in world markets.