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Yamaha Motor Co. said Tuesday it has launched a three-year business plan that focuses on sales growth in China and other Asian markets.

Under the plan, which kicked off this month and runs until March 31, 2005, Yamaha said it will work to raise its market share in such countries as China, India, Thailand and Vietnam, where the motorcycle market has strong potential for continued growth.

While holding a market share of more than 20 percent in North America and Europe, Yamaha currently holds less than 10 percent in the Asian markets.

Yamaha, which also manufactures marine products and engines, said it hopes to post consolidated sales of 1.05 trillion yen, group operating profits of 70 billion yen and group pretax profits of 65 billion yen in the 2004 business year.

As part of the effort to increase its presence in Asia, Yamaha will establish a subsidiary to serve as a global center for developing and supplying its motorcycle parts.

Yamaha Motor Suzhou Co., capitalized at 480 million yen, is scheduled to start operating in July. It will develop motorcycle parts to be made in China, educate potential Chinese parts suppliers and ship the parts to Yamaha’s plants globally, the firm said.

The company will initially invest around 10 billion yen for the Chinese motorcycle parts business, a Yamaha official said.

The increase in use of Chinese motorcycle parts is also part of a reduction in development costs, the firm said. In addition, it will reduce costs by reorganizing its development and production operations. By the end of the three-year plan, Yamaha hopes to achieve a total cost reduction of 30 percent for the development of a new model.

Yamaha said it will also streamline business areas to focus on raising profitability during the three-year period.

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