Japanese cars waiting exportation
The Motor Industry Association (MIA) and Imported Motor Vehicle Industry Association (VIA) have an important and colourful past. Autofile Online takes a look.
The VIA was formed in 1989 by dealers for dealers. It is a business association, and helps members manage and develop their businesses by providing support and advice.
Nowadays, the VIA represents a wider group involved in importing used vehicles into New Zealand. Its members include Kiwi wholesalers and retailers, customs agents, transport companies, shipping companies, compliance shops, and Japanese, UK and Singaporean vehicle exporters.
The VIA basically kick-started the used-vehicle import industry in New Zealand. It developed seatbelt anchorage systems for used Japanese vehicles, developed testing and certification procedures, established VINZ to provide competitive inspection services and saved dealers more than $135 million by negotiating the removal of tariffs.
It also saved importers $19m by taking the Customs Department to the Court of Appeal, forced the Parliamentary Regulations Review Committee to review the Minister of Transport’s frontal-impact regulations, resists the introduction of unreasonable legislation and rules, and continually lobbies government departments on behalf of the trade.
The MIA represents importers and distributors of new cars, trucks and motorbikes. It was set up to provide a unified voice and drive progress on issues that concern the sector – such as vehicle safety, emissions, fuel economy, consumer standards, industry training and codes of practice. It is made up of some 41 members covering 78 marques over three vehicle classes – light automotive, heavy automotive and motorcycles.
The association was formed in 1996, bringing together AMIDNZ, the new vehicle importers’ association, with the Motor Vehicle Manufacturers’ Association for assemblers of completely knocked down (CKD) vehicles. In January 2007, the MIA merged with the Motorcycle Distributors’ Association.
The MIA is involved in a wide range of industry issues. It operates several committees that deal with sector specific interests, such as vehicle safety and design, heavy vehicles and vehicle registration.
Distributors supply new vehicles that meet transport rules. When developing new rules, the MIA advocates the government take into account key principles. These are work towards rule harmonisation with source markets, avoid unique country rules, standardise with key source market regimes and align the introduction of new standards with those markets.
They also include allowing adequate lead times for the phase-in of new standards particularly when they need significant development which may require several years to design, test and comply to international standards, and avoid situations where individual distributors use rules to gain a market advantage.