Monday, May 07, 2007

Should we sell Proton to foreigners?

Proton, Malaysian National car maker, which many Malaysian is not so proud of. It is well known for its inferior quality compared to other car makers such as the Japanese or Korean, but I do sincerely hope that it is not inferior to China's product.
A lot of people do not wish to own a Proton, citing its inferior quality as one of the reasons. The only reason people actually buy a Proton is because it is cheaper compared to other cars in Malaysia due to the high taxes placed on imported cars. Because of this, Proton is suffering from very poor sales thus it seems to be generating losses and a lot of Malaysian citizens are urging the government to sell it off as it is wasting the tax payers money. One of the proposed buyer is Volkswagen, the company that had helped revived a few other poor performing car manufacturers.
Must we sell Proton to a foreign car maker? Do we not have local companies with the skills to manage Proton? Or is Proton such a money sucking organization that nobody wants to risk it?
I sincerely hope that Proton would not be sold to a foreigner company thus resulting all our tax payers money going to some foreigners' pocket. I do hope that most Malaysian realize that Malaysia has a lot of polices in place that is very favorable to Proton. I am very sure Malaysians can do a good job of running Proton if they are given the chance.
Proton is our National car. Our RM100 bills bear the picture of Proton. Let this continue to be our National car. Sell Proton, but to some local companies and let them turn the company around. I am sure if in the right hands, Proton can surely revive itself with such favorable policies in place.
And to those trying to think that by selling Proton off, we can get cheap imports, I doubt it will ever happen. Even if it happen, it might be only a 5 to 10% decrease. There are tons of imports on our Malaysian streets. I think a majority of it are on hire purchase schemes. Imagine if suddenly the imports prices become low. Wouldn't that make majority of car owners poorer? So, the best thing is to improve the quality of Proton. Make it a real car. One that the nation can be proud of.
Of course, to achieve this, I am sure all those bumi policies that is slowly crippling our Malaysian economy must be removed from Proton.

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