My Appointment to the Board of Directors of the Japan Used Motor Vehicle Exporters Association

■Background of my appointment


Hello, I’m Ichiki of Sync Logistics.

In this issue, I’d like to share with you my appointment to the board of directors of the Japan Used Motor Vehicle Exporters Association (JUMVEA).

In September 2021, I received an email from Mr. Sato, JUMVEA’s founder and current chairman of the board. He invited me to dinner because he had been reading my newsletter, and something I wrote resonated with him. That something was “the success of the industry as a whole starts with the success of shippers.” As exporters, they couldn’t go on business trips overseas because of the pandemic, and they were losing space on ships to China and South Korea. I wrote about my approach of “prioritizing the success of shippers” which in a small way helped in boosting their morale.

Mr. Sato then told me he wanted me on the board of directors, which I joined this past spring. However, after ten years of tirelessly managing Sync Logistics, I initially felt awkward in assuming a position that should have gone to someone more senior than me. But I accepted the appointment because one of our company’s important missions for 2020 and beyond was “maximizing the number of used cars exported from Japan.”

■What is JUMVEA?


The Japan Used Motor Vehicle Exporters Association (JUMVEA) was established in 1996, to “exchange information with each other, build order in the used car export industry, and strive for the sound development of used car exports, as well as conduct necessary joint projects for JUMVEA members, promote the economic activities of members, and improve their social and economic status.”

During the 1990s, development of the industry was hampered by problems such as stolen vehicles being exported, and the social status of used car exporters who experienced much highs and lows did not improve, making it difficult for them to acquire funding for their businesses.

In this light, volunteers from the industry formed an association which received approval from the Ministry of Economy, Trade and Industry, and it has been conducting its activities since then.

Specific activities include inspection tours abroad for association members who want to develop new markets, and lobbying the government and other authorities which cannot be done by one company alone.

One example is the vehicle weight tax refund. Most of the Japanese taxation system for vehicles consists of the vehicle tax and the vehicle weight tax (excluding consumption tax and environmental performance tax). Because these two taxes are prepaid for the time the vehicle will be used within Japan, a refund can be issued once it is exported. While the vehicle tax is refunded after export, the vehicle weight tax is not refunded.

As an organization in the industry, I think it is important that our association addresses such contradictions and demands in the export of used vehicles. Rules, which include various systems and laws, are made to meet challenges that exist at the time such rules are introduced. While I believe that such rules are designed in a way that takes the future into account, in a changing, fast-paced world, it is impossible to establish a system that considers the impact on all parties concerned and achieves lasting overall optimization.

I believe that every industry needs an organization that can condense these systemic problems and challenges as industry-wide demands and make recommendations while maintaining order in that industry.

■A board of directors that pools knowledge and know-how


Presently, the association has 11 officers. They meet in Tokyo once every other month to discuss and decide on what actions to take based on a pre-submitted agenda.

This month will be my first board meeting since I became a board member, and I am very excited.

Except for a certified public accountant who acts as an auditor, the ten board members are the presidents of vehicle export companies, and other important people. They all have their own businesses and responsibilities, but they work for the association without pay.

Aside from JUMVEA, I am also on the board of the Japan Subscription Business Association (

I will share the details of this subscription association in another newsletter, but having joined such associations, I think there are important points to note in an organization.

1. The organization’s mission is clear.

2. The role of each board member is clear.

3. The ways of managing the board (decision-making) is clear.

While pooling the knowledge and know-how of those who have achieved a certain level of success can generate novel ideas and powerful execution capabilities, if points 1 to 3 are unclear, it will be difficult to define vectors and there will be oversights and duplications in the board’s activities.

I’m not sure how much I could contribute to the board, but I hope to utilize my experiences to be able to contribute. In future newsletters, I will also share the association’s activities with you. If you would like to join the association, please get in touch with me and I will introduce you to the secretariat.

Thank you for your time.