August 18 2004. The Japanese manufacturers are strengthening operations in India in anticipation of continued growth of the market there.

Suzuki Motor Corp. withdrew from the country in 2001, but will re-enter it next year. It has invested some 480 million yen to acquire a 51% stake in an existing company named Integra Overseas Private Ltd. through which it will construct a plant in northern India slated to be in operation by the end of 2005.

Honda Motor Co. raised production capacity this spring at Indian affiliate Hero Honda Motors Ltd. and wholly owned subsidiary Honda Motorcycle & Scooter India (Private) Ltd. from a combined 1.52 million units in 2002 to 2.85 million units.

Yamaha Motor Co. is bolstering operations through wholly owned subsidiary Yamaha Motor India Private Ltd., aiming to increase sales in India by 30% to 280,000 motorcycles in 2004 by developing products that meet local needs.

India's motorcycle market grew 10% in 2003 and is expected to expand 10% this year to 6 million units.

Source: The Nikkei Business Daily.