The Malaysian government has announced a new National Automotive Policy (NAP 2020) setting out some very ambitious long-term targets for the local industry.

NAP 2020, announced by prime minister Mahathir Mohamad, who has since resigned, targets a MYR104bn (US$25bn) contribution by the local automotive industry to the country's GDP by 2030 with a significant emphasis on growing exports of both assembled vehicles and components.

The new policy targets total vehicle production, including passenger vehicles and commercial vehicles, of 1.47m units by 2030 – up from 572,000 in 2019.

Domestic vehicle sales are expected to amount to 1.22m units by then, twice as many as last year, while exports are expected to reach 250,000 units compared with an estimated 15,000.

The value of component exports is expected to reach MYR28.3bn (US$6.7bn) and exports of remanufactured components a further MYR10bn.

Mohamad said the new policy would prioritise R&D and look to localise the latest technology to help make the country's automotive industry more competitive internationally. The government wants eventually to establish local automotive technology manufacturing clusters with highly trained workforces.

The former prime minister confirmed "the new Malaysian vehicle project is expected to contribute significantly to the nation's economic development through support for both the upstream and downstream automotive industries and by creating significant local demand for high quality materials such as high grade steel, plastics, rubber and petrochemical products".

The government also wants to grow the automotive supply base to 1,250 companies by 2030, including 400 tier 1 and 885 tier 2 suppliers, creating 323,000 new jobs in manufacturing, aftermarket, robotics and connected technology.

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