Japan's Minister of International Trade and Industry yesterday warned Japanese car-makers over a recent rise in exports to the United States. In a meeting with industry executives, Shinji Sato expressed concern about the possibility of renewed trade friction. 'Given the current situation overseas, care is needed in building trading relationships,' Mr Sato said. He did not ask the car-makers to limit their exports, a ministry official said. Mr Sato said trade in vehicles could be on the agenda when US Vice-President Al Gore arrives in Japan on March 23 for a two-day visit. Japan's car exports to the US jumped 75.3 per cent to 124,834 in January compared with a year earlier, adding to growing alarm among US car-makers. General Motors, Ford and Chrysler have complained that the steady fall in the value of the yen against the dollar is helping Japanese manufacturers sell more cars in the US, and hurting US car sales in Japan.