Hyundai chief heads to U.S. to check on operations there

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Hyundai chief heads to U.S. to check on operations there

Hyundai Motor Group Chairman Chung Mong-koo left for the United States yesterday to check on the status of the U.S. automobile market and specifically the performance of its two automakers, Hyundai Motor and Kia Motors.

The group said the 74-year-old chief will first stop over in Los Angeles to hear the business plans of Hyundai Motor’s U.S. sales branch, before he visits the company’s plants in Alabama and Georgia. This is the first time since June last year that Chung has made a trip to the United States.

The nation’s No. 1 automaker said the chairman wanted to inspect the group’s largest foreign market and put into motion pre-emptive measures to guard against slowdown in the global automobile market, which has taken a beating due to the financial crisis in Europe.

During his visit, Chung is expected to discuss how Japanese automakers have been rapidly regaining traction in the U.S. market by rolling out aggressive marketing campaigns and special promotions.

Hyundai said he will emphasize how the group’s U.S. employees must not be influenced by their Japanese rivals’ rising sales; rather, the focus should be on maintaining prices, quality and business stability.

Chung has been roaming the globe of late to monitor the group’s operations and performance. He visited Europe in March and China in June to ensure product quality stays up to scratch.

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