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Expert: Malaysia can replicate China’s EV-related structures

Expert: Malaysia can replicate China’s EV-related structures

10 Aug 2023

Malaysia has vast natural resources and labour, and needs to only look at China as it seeks to accelerate the adoption of electric vehicles (EV) as part of green measures under the Madani Economy.

Economic analyst Dr Barjoyai Bardai, a professor emeritus at Universiti Tun Abdul Razak, said China, a leader in EV production, had developed technologies and capitalised on them for the industry’s development.

Barjoyai said: “We could replicate EV-related structures in China, not only for four-wheeled vehicles, but also two- and three-wheeled bikes.

“This has transformed the economy, pushing millions of its people out of poverty,” he told the New Straits Times.

In addition, Malaysia had vast natural resources and labour to offer, provided they were managed in a sustainable manner, he said.

Barjoyai said the country “must not take for granted that resources will be there forever”.

“It is imperative that society is exposed to the environmental, social and governance (ESG) agenda and understand its importance when appointing contractors and suppliers.”

He said future university programmes must be industry-focused by involving expertise and training within industry, while taking into consideration the rapid migration to the Fourth Industrial Revolution (IR 4.0).

“As for employees, we have to first accept that 70 per cent of the workforce are unskilled with a Sijil Pelajaran Malaysian qualification and lower.

“We want to get out of this middle-income trap and provide unskilled workers with reskilling and upskilling training.”

Centre for Market Education chief executive officer Dr Carmelo Ferlito said: “The government seems to be focused on a pro-growth strategy and this focus needs to be maintained, while green initiatives that undermine growth and lead to poverty should be avoided.

Ferlito said: “So a clearer evaluation needs to be done once the different measures are presented.”

While the adoption of EVs was important, in this case it should be done gradually, he said.

He said a harm-reduction strategy on EV would be centred on differentiated taxation, which means the adoption of different tax rates were imposed according to how much harmful or less harmful certain products were.

In general, he said, a few conditions needed to be met to ensure the success of the Madani Economy.

He said policy action needed to be implemented at the institutional level rather than at the micro level; and direct control of the economy, including price controls and labour restrictions, needed to be avoided.

He said a long-term political commitment was necessary as this implied political stability, which was key in attracting investors, as well as having competent people with an understanding of economic forces and entrepreneurship to lead the charge.

Source: NST