Earlier this month, the government had started allowing certain business activities to resume under a loosened Movement Control Order (MCO). This is seen as a relief to the automotive industry which can now restart its sales and service operations, as well as manufacturing activities. UMW Toyota Motor is one of these beneficiaries, with the resumption of business at its Toyota and Lexus centres, as well as its vehicle assembly.
“We welcome the easing of the restrictions which have posed an increasing challenge to our business over the past two months. Resuming our business activities, especially at Toyota and Lexus retail outlets, will enable a return to some form of normalcy so we can move forward and do our part to help in the economic recovery of the country,” said Ravindran K., President of UMW Toyota Motor.
Ravindran K. said that the company understands the seriousness of preventing the spread of COVID-19 and will follow all the Standard Operating Procedures (SOPs), conditions and guidelines provided by the Health Ministry and the National Security Council. These are implemented throughout the company and are strictly followed to ensure the safety of the public as well as its employees.
“In fact, after the MCO last year, we already implemented many of the SOPs at our showrooms and service centres, and these have been maintained even until now. These include temperature scanning of everyone, registration with MySejahtera, use of hand sanitisers and facemasks, and regular sanitisation of premises,” he said.
Toyota and Lexus customers are also requested to make appointments in advance before visiting the service centres. Contactless payment is also encouraged, and social distancing is observed at all times. “We assure our customers that we have made sure that our premises have a safe environment for them to visit,” Ravindran K. added.
On the resumption of manufacturing activities, Ravindran K. said that this will enable the company to start to fulfil the backlog of orders that have built up. The two assembly plants and related factories in the UMW Toyota Motor group will be able to operate at specified capacities depending on the percentage of workers who are already vaccinated, with full capacity permitted if more than 80% are vaccinated.
“The company has been carrying out a vaccination programme and all our employees have already been vaccinated or will be vaccinated very soon,” he said.
Commenting on the situation, Ravindran K., said, “Despite the less encouraging sales numbers for the months of June and July, we still have a strong order bank of bookings for the various models and will move forward swiftly to respond accordingly to minimise any impact to our business and customers,” he said.
“Now that the restrictions are lifted, we have more certainty as there are many important plans in the pipeline. For example, we have been preparing for the local assembly of Toyota Hybrid Electric Vehicles and while the past two months have disrupted planning, we will now proceed as quickly as possible to make up for the time lost,” said Akio Takeyama, Deputy Chairman of UMW Toyota Motor.