Prime minister Ismail Sabri Yaakob, during the launch of the 2022 Perodua Alza earlier today, brought forward an interesting proposition to the local car manufacturer and national utility company Tenaga Nasional Berhad (TNB). During his speech, Ismail encouraged both parties to cooperate in producing local electric vehicles (EVs) as well as developing an EV infrastructure.
The prime minister notes that TNB is currently working to increase its energy production by using renewable energy sources and providing adequate EV charging stations. With this, he suggests that Perodua should take this opportunity to work together with the national utility company to explore new fields. These include producing high-quality EVs and introducing affordable charging rates for Malaysians.
Ismail says this would also help Malaysia to achieve its target of being a carbon-neutral nation by as early as 2050. He adds that such smart cooperation should be forged as soon as possible to overcome the effects of climate change, as well as to ensure sustainable development of the country.
Commenting further on the development of local EVs, the prime minister is also suggesting for telecommunication companies to work together with the two parties. As an example, Ismail says companies such as Telekom Malaysia could provide exclusive data packages that will enable users to book EV charging sessions online.
Though the local car manufacturer has yet to unveil its own EV line-up, company CEO Zainal Abidin Ahmad revealed back in February that the company is planning to make an official announcement regarding its future EV roadmap plan within this year. In addition, he also noted that Perodua has plans to introduce a lineup of hybrid vehicles before debuting its first EV.
In regards to pricing, Zaid assured that one of the company’s main priorities has always been affordability. “Affordable because we want to give Malaysians mobility, we want to let Malaysians enjoy this new technology,” he said in a statement. “This study is basically how to make electrification affordable to Malaysians”.
The Perodua CEO also explained that collaborations are important for the development of infrastructure, as investment is expected to be huge. “There should be a standard in the country regarding charging stations, there must be somebody who is willing to invest in the development of infrastructure – charging stations, meeting the grid requirements and all that,” he said. “If this kind of collaboration happens, I believe Malaysians can enjoy affordable EVs.”
For now, only time will tell whether TNB will collaborate with Perodua to develop an EV infrastructure and/or help with its EV production. Should this be the case, you can expect either company to make an official statement in the near future.