• Kyodo

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The Australian arm of Toyota Motor Corp. said Thursday it will invest 50 million Australian dollars (about 3.4 billion yen) in a new Australian corporate headquarters in Melbourne.

Construction of the new facility, on the site of the current headquarters, will begin in August and is due to be completed in December 2003.

Ken Asano, president of Toyota Motor Corp. Australia Ltd., said the new facility will serve to reinforce Toyota’s reputation as a major employer in Australia.

The company currently employs more than 4,200 Australians and exports more than 50,000 cars to 33 countries.

“The current buildings constructed in the 1950s and 1960s are now not appropriate for a globally competitive company like Toyota,” Asano said in a written statement. “The new building will increase operational efficiency and enhance our image of leadership and success.”

The new three-level building will accommodate 340 people in 10,000 sq. meters of floor space. About 250 jobs will be created when construction commences.

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