Deputy Minister Dr Ong Kian Ming said there were a lot of German car companies which had been very successful in assembling completely knocked-down (CKD) vehicles with a lot of local content.
“If the German (auto) companies are interested to explore opportunities in the third national car project, we are willing and open to their proposals,” he told reporters after the exchange of a memorandum of understanding (MoU) on the Malaysia-Germany Strategic Collaboration and the soft launch of the East Coast Economic Region's (ECER) Asia Centre of Excellence for Smart Technologies (ACES) here today.
On whether any proposals have been received from these automakers, Ong said an announcement would be made in the future.
German Ambassador to Malaysia Nikolaus Graf Lambsdorff said German car brands were already a familiar sight to Malaysian consumers.
“Four German carmakers wish to expand their business and increase their production in Malaysia. They are very active here, looking not only at the Malaysian market but also at neighbouring countries,” he said.
However, Lambsdorff said to date, there were no official proposals or enquiries of interest from these carmakers to participate in the third national car project.
Meanwhile, East Coast Economic Region Development Council (ECERDC) Chief Executive Officer Datuk Seri Jebasingam Issace John said the RM12 million ACES was scheduled to begin operations in early January next year.
“ACES is a joint-venture initiative between ECERDC and Germany's TUM International GmbH to provide Industry 4.0 certification, advisory, consulting and training services on smart technologies and practices in Malaysia and Southeast Asia.
“It will also drive efforts to upskill the local talent pool to be ready for jobs of the future, particularly in Industry 4.0-related careers in digital and automation,” he said.
Ong said that the centre, serving as a neutral platform to connect various government agencies, industry players and institutes of higher learning, boded well for the national goal of enabling the needed ecosystem for industries to adopt Industry 4.0.
“At the same time, this initiative will equip the local talent pool in ECER with the resources to upgrade their skills and move up the value chain by learning from Germany's industry-leading expertise and experience,” he added.
ACES also exchanged MoUs with IJM Corporation Bhd, MCKIP Sdn Bhd, Kuantan Port Consortium, Universiti Malaysia Pahang and Siemens Malaysia to support Industry 4.0 initiatives and the upskilling of local graduates. - Bernama