KUALA LUMPUR: Malaysia is open to foreign collaborations for the development of new national cars under the National Automotive Policy 2020 (NAP 2020), as the government does not intend to invest in the industry, moving forward.
As such, the government would welcome investors with foresight with regards to the future of motor vehicles, said Prime Minister Tun Dr Mahathir Mohamad.
He added that the country possesses new technologies, which will make new nationals cars competitive and at par with international standards.
“We are free to collaborate with companies from all over the world. We started with the Japanese and we are grateful for that, but the fact is that today we find advances made not only by Japan, but also by other countries including China, South Korea and some European countries.
“We are open to collaborating if they have technologies that are unique to them,” he told reporters after the launch of NAP 2020 here yesterday.
Dr Mahathir said that the prototype for the third national car was ready but it has not been shown to the public.
“We are working on controls now to make sure that our car is sensitive to the environment and will react in order to make sure that the driver does not make any mistakes. We have the capacity, but we need investments.
“Now the government is not going to invest, so we are asking the private sector to come in, invest and produce cars that is not only meant for Malaysia but also other countries,” he added.
The government will implement the new Malaysia Vehicle Project under NAP 2020 to develop two national cars and one national motorcycle.
It is expected to contribute significantly to the country’s economic development through its support of the upstream and downstream sectors.
The project will emphasise on research and development and incorporation of the latest technologies in order to be competitive in both domestic and global markets.
Dr Mahathir said that Malaysia now has the capability to build its own cars following the developments in the automotive industry in the previous decades.
“Things are developed stage by stage. We cannot suddenly become a producer without going through the phases. But the fact remains that we have been in the automotive industry for the last 35 years.
“Today, we can build prototypes and all the things needed to produce not just ordinary cars, but also modern high-technology cars,” he added. – Bernama