by S BIRRUNTHA / pic by RAZAK GHAZALI
PROTON Holdings Bhd has expressed its support to the National Automotive Policy 2020’s (NAP2020) measures to turn Malaysia into a hub for the development of next-generation vehicles (NxGV) and critical components.
In a statement recently, the carmaker said the new strategy presents opportunities to stakeholders in the automotive industry to introduce new technologies to the country, while also elevating the skills and capabilities of the local vendor community.
This is also following the call to develop energy-efficient vehicles in NAP2014.
Proton added that with the company’s ownership structure, in which 50.1% is owned by DRB-Hicom Bhd and 49.9% by Zhejiang Geely Holding Group Co Ltd, it is able to leverage its shareholders’ strengths.
Additionally, Proton will have access to local ecosystems via DRB-Hicom and new technologies via Geely, to seize opportunities presented by the NAP2020.
Proton CEO Dr Li Chunrong said the NAP2020 shows that Malaysia is moving towards the adoption of new technology vehicles featuring electric and hybrid powertrains, as well as autonomous and connectivity technologies.
“Proton’s two shareholders grant us access to Malaysia’s automotive industry ecosystem, as well as the technologies needed for NxGV models, one of the main thrusts of the policy.
“There are still many steps to take and Proton is confident that with the correct policies in place, we will be able to contribute towards Malaysia achieving the goals set out in NAP2020,” he said in the statement.
However, the carmaker noted that at this early stage, it will continue with its schedule of investing in new products and technologies, as well as plants and manufacturing facilities.
It will also continue to work with local vendors and promote investments in new technologies, especially through strategic collaborations to infuse technical capabilities and expand commercial viability.
As for its sales network, Proton is looking to enhance the ownership experience of its customers through the expansion of integrated services in 3S (sales, service and spare parts) and 4S (sales, service, spare parts, and body and paint services) outlets nationwide.