Press Release

Feb. 19, 2024

President & CEO Mr. Takashi Shimizu Awarded the Gold Medal of Merit from the Government of the Republic of Serbia

Hyogo, Japan - February 19, 2024 – Toyo Tire Corporation is pleased to announce that Mr. Takashi Shimizu, Representative Director, President & CEO of Toyo Tire Corporation, has been awarded the “Gold Medal of Merit” by the Government of the Republic of Serbia on February 15, 2024.
The ceremony was held at the Presidential Palace, where President Aleksandar Vučić of the Republic of Serbia awarded the Medal of Merit and the Certificate for Decoration in recognition of “the significant contributions and achievements to the Republic of Serbia in the area of economic development and the results arising from them.”


(Right: President Aleksandar Vučić of the Republic of Serbia,  Left: Takashi Shimizu, Representative Director, President & CEO, Toyo Tire Corporation)


■Profile of Takashi Shimizu, Representative Director, President & CEO, Toyo Tire Corporation


Date of BirthApril 2, 1961
Born in Kyoto Prefecture, Japan
Professional CareerApril 1985: Joined Toyo Tire Corporation
April 2010: President, Toyo Tire Holdings of Americas Inc.
January 2013: Division General Manager, Tire Planning Division, Toyo Tire Corporation
March 2014: Corporate Officer; Division General Manager, Tire Planning Division, Tire Business Group Headquarters, Toyo Tire Corporation
July 2015: Senior Corporate Officer; Division General Manager, Tire Planning Division, Tire Business Group Headquarters, Toyo Tire Corporation
November 2015: Representative Director, President & CEO, Toyo Tire Corporation (current position)
Other positions2018: Chairman, Japan Automobile Tyre Manufacturers Association, Inc. (JATMA), Chair, Tire Fair Trade Council
2020: Chair, Osaka Gomu Kougyoukai (current position)
2022: President, Japan Rubber Manufacturers Association (JRMA) (current position)
Awards2023: Received Medal with Blue Ribbon



In 2019, Toyo Tire Corporation announced its decision to establish its first European production site in the Republic of Serbia, breaking ground on a vast plot of land in the city of Indjija in 2020 to construct a new automotive tire production factory.

While the groundbreaking ceremony was held remotely connecting Serbia and Japan amid the COVID-19 pandemic, President Aleksandar Vučić of the Republic of Serbia was welcomed to the planned construction site. He gave a congratulatory speech, expressing his hope that new jobs would be created and a new industrial foundation would be laid when the factory went into operation.
 groundbreaking ceremony


With the completion of the factory in 2022, operations began in July, and the opening ceremony was held officially in December.
In his address, President Shimizu expressed his expectation for the new factory: “Without a doubt, we could not have established a new factory here without the extraordinary vision and passion for economic development exhibited by the leadership of the Serbian governments… By delivering sought-after tires in a timely manner to keep pace with the rapid changes in the marketplace, we will tap the new factory’s full strategic potential to meet the demands of our U.S. market, while at the same time supplying our European market from a local base. Our goal is to make its presence felt as a global production and supply base.”
Furthermore, President Aleksandar Vučić, who was present at the ceremony, offered generous congratulatory remarks: “Today is a special day because the dream that we have dreamed of for the past five years, together with our Japanese friends, has come true. … We expect that the best tires ‘made in Serbia’ will go from here to the world, to the markets of North America and Western Europe… The factory in Inđija is the only greenfield investment of the Toyo Tire Corporation in Europe, and it is the best in the whole world in terms of quality and equipment… All this brings us a faster GDP growth, it brings us higher salaries and pensions. This is what makes each of us happy and proud.” 
opening ceremony

The factory in Serbia features state-of-the-art technologies to visualize processes. This smart factory optimally manages the production system by precisely linking highly productive production equipment. It is responsible for producing high-performance, competitive tires that meet market insights, including the ongoing shift to electric vehicles (EVs).
Adjacent to the factory building is a proving ground with a 720-meter straight track and a total length of 1,690 meters. This enables prompt evaluations in compliance with laws/regulations and certification requirements, allowing for the timely delivery of attractive products to the market. Furthermore, on the premises is a solar power system (electric generating capacity: 8.4 MW), one of the largest in the country, which will also contribute to reducing CO2 emissions. While promoting local production for local consumption in the European region, the Company will also cater strategically to our main market in North America.

In November 2023, Toyo Tire Holdings of Europe GmbH, the holding company in Europe of Toyo Tire Corporation hereby announced the conclusion of an agreement on industry-university partnership for research and development of sustainable raw materials with the University of Novi Sad (Headquarters: Novi Sad, Republic of Serbia; Rector: Dejan Madic). Toyo Tire will jointly pursue research outcomes for developing sustainable materials on a global scale.



Toyo Tire Corporation
Corporate Communications Dept.
Hyogo Head office Telephone: +81-72-789-9100 Facsimile: +81-72-773-3272

Press Release is intended for media purposes, and is current of the date of publication.
Information is subject to change with or without notice.