Envoy: Prices of Japanese second-hand cars will soar

By Munene Kamau

Japan Ambassador to Kenya, Toshihisa Takata, has said his country has momentarily stopped manufacturing new motor vehicles and other machineries following last week’s devastation by a high-magnitude earthquake and tsunami.

This, he said, was likely to see the cost of such vehicles and machines rise globally.

Takata said the quake had caused massive destruction to the country’s national economy, which would take some time to turn around.

"Japan, which is the largest manufacturer of automobiles in the world, has been forced to close down all motor vehicle manufacturing plants in the country following last week’s 8.9 magnitude quake, which left in its wake a trail of unquantifiable destruction," he said.

Humanitarian crisis

The envoy said the quake had resulted in a humanitarian, economic and nuclear crisis, which the country was now grappling with.

He was speaking to the Press at Kanyumbora market in Siakago constituency on Tuesday after signing a Sh8 million grant for a local water project.

He said although he could not forecast the expected rise in costs for second-hand cars into the Kenyan market, a sharp price upsurge was inevitable.

Takata also noted he was impressed by the moral support that Kenyans had shown to his country during this devastating time.

He confirmed receiving overwhelming messages of sympathy from wananchi, an indication that many empathised with the situation.