Ong: Proton plant should be expanded and upgraded
KUALA LUMPUR: Proton Holdings Bhd’s plant in Tanjung Malim, Perak, should be expanded and upgraded to complement the New City aspiration announced by Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Tun Razak in Budget 2018 last week.
Second International Trade and Industry Minister Datuk Seri Ong Ka Chuan said the Proton City plant was necessary to create more jobs and attract more people, especially youths, to migrate there.
Under the budget, Najib said the Government has allocated RM1bil for the five main corridors, including South 12 Perak region comprising Proton City, Educity and Youth City in Tanjung Malim, among others.
Ong, who is also MP for Tanjung Malim, said that the Youth City plan would be put under the National Blue Ocean Strategy, where the Government was looking for strategic locations nearer to the Klang Valley to build affordable housing projects in the area for the youths.
“In the meeting with Najib, I said that we need to create more job opportunities in Tanjung Malim so the people would migrate and buy a house there.
“If there are no jobs, there is no use for us to build houses there.
“Also, we need to improve connectivity, between Tanjung Malim and Klang Valley, such as train or others, which would encourage people working in Klang Valley to purchase houses here,” he told reporters after delivering his speech at the Business Excellence CEO Forum 2017 here yesterday.
Ong said Proton currently has two plants, in Shah Alam and Tanjung Malim, where workers in Tanjung Malim plant were currently at about 1,400.
“Now we have a bigger plan (for Proton), with Proton is currently in partnership with Geely, where we are planning to build a plant that could produce around 400,000 cars annually in the next five years, of which half of the output will be exported to the Asean market,” he said. He said Proton was currently sending its engineers and technicians to China to undergo the Geely’s research and development (R&D) programme, which Proton benefited from the partnership of both entities.
He said the R&D programme would allow Proton to increase its car’s quality and technology to meet the Asean standard, including electric and hybrid vehicles, among others.
For the Educity, he said, the Universiti Pendidikan Sultan Idris would be tasked to train the teachers, including the special education teachers, which would for the student with needs of special attentions.