The Japan Automobile Manufacturers Assn. is downbeat about prospects for the current fiscal year.

“Considering the possibility of a rapid economic recovery unlikely, and taking into account risks associated with currency exchange rates, equity prices and other factors, the outlook for fiscal 2010 (ending March 31, 2011) is not optimistic,” the group concludes in its recently released Fiscal 2010 Business Activity Plan.

The government’s extension of subsidies to promote purchases of eco-friendly cars, trucks and buses is expected to have a positive impact on sales, but JAMA anticipates termination of the program at the end of September will decrease demand.

The group forecasts total 2010 domestic sales will be 4.65 million units, down 4.9% from fiscal 2009 levels.

Total domestic sales rose 3.8% to 4.88 million units in fiscal 2009, following four years of decline. Automotive exports dropped 27.1% to 4.08 million units last year.

JAMA says the focus should be on further development and integration of intelligent transportation systems. In addition, it is calling for an expedited shift to low-carbon transport and the reduction of carbon-dioxide emissions in the vehicle manufacturing process.

JAMA also is pushing for governments around the world to recognize and accept each other’s vehicle type approval data when certifying vehicles meet regulatory standards.

The group is calling for the problems of double taxation and intellectual property rights violations that occur in an era of global automotive production and sales to be addressed.