Foreign companies will be allowed to make small hybrid cars in Malaysia, Southeast Asia's No.3 economy, according to its 2014 National Automotive Policy as quoted by media reports Thursday.
This policy aims for feature inducements for foreign companies such as Mazda and Honda to make small, energy-efficient automobiles, following the former examples of Thailand and Indonesia to be the regional hub for low-emission vehicles.
The new policy opens the way for foreign auto makers to produce gasoline and battery powered passenger cars with engine sizes of 1.8 liters or less.
It aims to export 200,000 energy-efficient cars, achieve 3 billion U.S. Dollars of car component shipments and create 150,000 jobs.
So far, Mazda Motor Corp and local manufacturer Perodua have pledged 2.25 billion ringgit (682.44 million dollars) for investment in energy-efficient vehicle production.
"We hope this policy can enable us to become the energy efficient vehicle hub in ASEAN in the future," Malaysia’s International Trade and Industry Minister Mustapa Mohamed said, "we hope to raise total production volume to 1.25 million vehicles by 2020 from some 0.57 million vehicles."