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Hi Katalin, sorry for my rushed explanation. Although the English is deceptive, "maker layout" is a system where an automaker compares past suppliers against one another (based on past 実績) to decide to whom they will award a supply contract. Hence Cinefil's reference: "トヨタの場合、具体的な発注に当たっては、「現行メーカー・レイアウト」と呼ばれる従来の納入実績のパターンをある程度尊重し、取引関係の継続性を確保しつつも、各サプライヤーに対する現状の総合評価を反映させた形で発注パターンを変化させることにより、協調と競争の微妙なバランスを取ろうと考えているようである。"In my translation, I preserved "M/L", but used "conduct M/L", "win the M/L" (which means, in effect, "win the order") etc.
After all, it is an acronym (hopefully not an anagram), that supposedly comes from English, so why can't you just leave it as M/L? If the readers are specialists, in the industry, they would know what it means, wouldn't they?
Hi Katalin, it is a shame you can't open Cinefil's document because it is an industry document (8 pages) written completely in Japanese. The only English in the document are a few English anagrams (3 or 4), including M/L. Therefore I think it is quite reliable. I agree with Harlan that "Maker layout" may in itself mean an agreement. Cinefil's document also contains the following heading: "RFQ から受注（ M/L ：Maker Lay-out) 獲得までの活動", which implies to me this means winning a contract. My hesitation with using "manufacturer license" is that a license implies permission to manufacturer a part etc., but the context here is an agreement (contract) to manufacture and supply and part. I feel there must be a fixed term for this terminology, but I am not sure what it is....
When I try to open Cinefil's PDF, I get an error message about a font, and I see nothing but white space and dots. So, I cannot check how reliable that document is. In the sentence you quoted, manufacturing license makes sense to me, as that is something that could be "acquired" (獲得). In my interpretation they are saying that in order to acquire a manufacturing license (that is, the agreement to supply certain parts to another company) the degree of precision and the reliability matters a lot.
You said yourself "the text relates to autoparts suppliers bidding to win manufacturing/supply agreements", so I don't understand why "maker layout" would make more sense than "manufacturing license". There are plenty of documents on the web with questionable translations, sometimes one copied from the other. I would not rely on an unfinished Japanese-Chinese dictionary made by a student.
By the way, I could not find any reference to "maker layout" as a phrase, and honestly I have no idea what that would mean. But again, it may be one of those mysterious 専門用語 that does not make sense to anybody except those who invented it. ;-)
Hi Katalin, thanks for your comment. The link provided by Cinefil states that M/L = "maker layout", and further down in the same document there is the following sentence:
This sentence perfectly represents the context of the document I am translating (the text relates to autoparts suppliers bidding to win manufacturing/supply agreements). I am still trying to work out how to use "M/L" in all three contexts (I agree that the grammar doesn't seem to work well for the most obvious interpretation of the meaning, so am still trying to get my head around it)...
Debby, why do you say "layout" is more likely? It does not work in a phrase like 「A社にＭ／Ｌする」, because if it was "layout" (in terms of getting the layout done by somebody) it would be 「A社にＭ／Ｌをしてもらう」, right? To license to somebody would be Aにライセンスする, right?
Many thanks, Cinefil! I also considered that it might be "manufacturing license" but I think "maker layout" is more likely. Only "maker layout" doesn't seem to appear frequently in Google in the automobile context (neither does "manufacturer layout"), so perhaps I should change it to "manufacturing layout"...
Harlan United States Local time: 23:58 Specializes in field Native speaker of: English PRO pts in category: 8
Notes to answerer
Asker: Hi Harlan, thanks so much for providing this response. I made a mistake and closed this item without grading, but have contacted the moderator and asked them to rectify the situation and award you the grading points. I will make sure they action this request. Thanks so much for your help!