MITI: NAP review to be completed by year end

Ong said the NAP review will also be looking at the issue of energy efficient vehicles, and hinted that the concept of a new or third national car would be along those lines. Photo by Kenny Yap

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KUALA LUMPUR (Aug 7): The ongoing review of the National Automotive Policy (NAP), which will look at new mobility pathways and new trends like driving patterns, will be completed by year end, according to Deputy International Trade and Industry Minister Dr Ong Kian Ming.

"For example, the number of passenger car sales has been declining over the past several years. The longer-term trend is that young people are driving less and I think with improvement in public transportation, the new policy will have to be adjusted along those lines.

"The National Automotive Policy review is under MITI (Ministry of International Trade and Industry). So we are taking inputs from various parties and other ministries and we will update our policy and announce it when it's ready. It should be by the end of the year," he told reporters on the sidelines of an event hosted by the British Malaysian Chamber of Commerce today.

He said the NAP review will also be looking at the issue of energy efficient vehicles, and hinted that the concept of the new or third national car would be along those lines.

"The prime minister's conception of the new national car project is not to go back to Proton. The way to go is obviously to create energy efficient vehicles, which include electric vehicles," he said.

He also said the government welcomes input and ideas of cooperation, including from foreign parties, on the proposed third national car.

"We are open to all inputs and all ideas of cooperation. Prime Minister Tun Dr Mahathir has spoken about the idea of having an ASEAN car in cooperation with Indonesia. So there are definitely opportunities for us to explore with other players," he said.

Earlier, Ong gave a presentation during the event titled 'Understanding the Ideas & Priorities of the Pakatan Harapan from a Sustainability Standpoint', which outlined the new Pakatan Harapan government's sustainability goals.

This includes increasing the percentage of renewable energy (RE) in Malaysia's energy mix from less than 3% currently to 20% by 2025, to upscale industries to adopt Industry 4.0, as well as to move from combustion engine to new mobility pathways.

"As part of striving for the 20% RE goal, we will not be including hydropower in its definition like the previous government did. In fact, when I checked statistics from the Energy Commission, large-scale hydro power has never been included in RE," he said, as he reiterated the PH's stand not to include hydropower as such dams usually result in the surrounding forests being destroyed.

Ong explained that if hydropower were to be included, then the percentage would already be very close to 20% and the push for RE would not be there.

"Also the kind of industries that hydropower attracts may not be industries that we want to attract at this point in time because we want to have capital intensive, good paying jobs for locals and we don't want industries that may be seen as more on the polluting side or have a reliance on the foreign labour," he added.