South-east Asia's car industry is getting ready for the start of partial free trade in the ASEAN countries next year with new investments and regional supply strategies, AutoAsia Online said. From 2002, import duty on fully-assembled vehicles shipped from one ASEAN country to another will fall to five percent or less. The exception is Malaysia, whose government insists its national car makers Proton and Perodua need greater protection from imported competition until 2005.