ECERDC – MAJECA Joint Webinar: “Investment Opportunities in the East Coast Region of Malaysia: Welcoming the Era of Next Generation Vehicles” held on 24 March 2022

The ECERDC – MAJECA Joint Webinar: “Investment Opportunities in the East Coast Region of Malaysia: Welcoming the Era of Next Generation Vehicles” was held on Thursday, 24 March 2022. It was jointly organised by the Malaysia-Japan Economic Association (MAJECA) and the East Coast Economic Region Development Council (ECERDC) of Malaysia with the support of the Malaysian Investment Development Authority (MIDA) and MAJECA’s counterpart, the Japan – Malaysia Economic Association (JAMECA).

This webinar aimed to share knowledge, information and experiences of players in the Next Generation Vehicles (NxGV) industry and to highlight the investment potential of the Automotive Manufacturing sector especially in the East Coast Economic Region (ECER) of Malaysia. The webinar also introduced the East Coast Economic Region Development Council (ECERDC) of Malaysia who has the mandate to spearhead the execution and implementation of the East Coast Economic Region (ECER) Master Plan and their directions, policies, and strategies for the socio-economic development of ECER by promoting and facilitating investments into the Region.

This webinar garnered over 220 participants from Malaysia, Japan and other ASEAN countries, comprising mostly business owners and experts in the automotive industries.

The programme of the webinar was as follows:

14.30 – 14.35Webinar begins.
14.35 – 14.40Opening Remarks by YBhg Tan Sri Azman Hashim, President, MAJECA
14.40 – 14.45Opening Remarks by YBhg Dato’ Baidzawi Che Mat, Chief Executive Officer, ECERDC
14.45 – 14.55Malaysia’s EV Investment Opportunities” by En Afzanil, Director, MIDA Osaka
14.55 – 15.10Investment Opportunities in ECER; Welcoming the Next Generation of Vehicles” by YBhg Dato’ Ragu Sampasivam, Chief Operating Officer, ECERDC
15.10 – 15.20Experience Sharing by Mr Hoffen Teh, Senior Vice President, Strategic Planning & Coordination, Mitsubishi Motors Malaysia
15.20 – 15.30Experience Sharing by Mr Ismail Pandak, Chief Executive Officer, HICOM Automotive Manufacturers Malaysia
15.30 – 15.40Q & A Session
15.40Webinar adjourns.

The webinar began with opening remarks from the respective leadership of MAJECA and ECERDC.

YBhg Tan Sri Azman Hashim,
the President of MAJECA giving his opening remarks.

YBhg Dato’ Baidzawi Che Mat,
the CEO of ECERDC, giving his opening remarks.

YBhg Tan Sri Azman Hashim in his opening remarks quoted the Ministry of International Trade and Industry (MITI) Malaysia’s definition of Next Generation Vehicle (NxGV) that includes; a vehicle that meets the energy efficient vehicle (EEV) criteria that is enhanced with Intelligent Mobility applications with a minimum of Level 3 automation. He highlighted that the automotive industry plays a significant role in transforming Malaysia into an industrialised nation, through the creation of high value economic activities, improving standards of living as well as creating higher paying jobs. This sector has the potential to positively impact the development of upstream industries e.g. steel, rubber and chemicals as well as downstream industries e.g. road construction, automotive parts, including IT, computing and maintenance services.

YBhg Dato’ Baidzawi Che Mat in his opening remarks briefed on the history of Malaysia’s journey towards energy efficient vehicle (EEV) which started in 2014 with the National Automotive Policy 2014. The NAP 2014 outlined the strategy and action plans to strengthen the entire value chain of the automotive industry in Malaysia. Leveraging on the foundation of NAP 2014, Malaysia launched the National Automotive Policy 2020 to propel the country to become the regional leader in automotive manufacturing. He highlighted that Malaysia is committed to reduce CO2 emissions, and the NAP 2020 emphasizes the move of developing Next Generation Vehicle (NxGV) and the adoption of EEVs as a step forward to combat climate change challenges as well as keeping up with the global trends.

The webinar then proceeded with presentation and experience sharing by the panelists consisting of experts in the automotive industry, followed by discussion and Q & A session with Ms Ng Su Fun as the moderator of the session. The panelist of speakers was as follows:

Panel Discussion and Q & A Session

From left-to-right (first row): Mr Hoffen Teh, Ms Ng Su Fun and Mr Ismail Pandak
From left-to-right (second row): YBhg Dato’ Ragu Sampasivam, YBhg Dato’ Baidzawi Che Mat and En Afzanil Md. Anuar.

The key highlights:

The National Automotive Policy (NAP) 2020 is the national policy framework to push Malaysia’s automotive industry into the new era of digital transformation. One of the priorities of NAP 2020 is the development of Next Generation Vehicle (NxGV). To accelerate this industry in Malaysia, the NAP 2020 provides several measures that include the issuance of EEV Manufacturing License, talent development in EEV field through human capital development programs including the National Occupational Skill Standard, establishing EV Interoperability Centre to align the standard conformation, protocols and testing procedures for EVs’ components and systems as well as incentives for eligible EEVs/NxGVs manufacturers.

The East Coast Economic Region Development Council (ECERDC) is a one-stop facilitation center to enable the smooth implementation of investments and facilitation of investors in the East Coast Economic Region, which comprise the states of Kelantan, Terengganu, and Pahang, and the district of Mersing in northeast Johor. This region is strategically positioned at the centre of ASEAN thus easily accessible to the Asia Pacific market and the Western market and has rich natural resources, skilled human capital and comprehensive logistic network, hence making the Region an attractive gateway for investments. The ECER is now focusing on developing the Next-Gen Vehicles Ecosystem and the industrial parks in ECER which are well-equipped with infrastructure to facilitate investors in the NxGVs automotive industry.

Mitsubishi Motors Malaysia (MMM) has successfully rolled out its new vehicle production project called the XPANDER. It is the first project to fully utilise the facilities available in one of the regions of ECER, which is Pekan, Pahang. One of the important aspects of vehicle assembly is the vendor operation support. Their contract assembler, namely HICOM Automotive (HA), has been able to provide vast storage space and sufficient car pool area to accommodate the high-volume production. HA has operation plants at DRB-HICOM Automotive Complex that can produce 5,000 – 12,000 units of vehicles per year. HA has the facilities for logistics, body-building (both manual and automated) and painting shop equipped with advanced technology. HA also has the facilities for body and structure accuracy measurement, assembly shop and testing facilities such test tracks, waterproof testing area and many more. The presence of DRB-HICOM University and its training camp in ECER provides a continuous supply of human resources with skills for the automotive industry.

MAJECA thanks our co-organisers, supporting organisers and all participants for making this webinar a success.

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