December 13, 2019, Tanjung Malim, Perak – The first Proton X70 that has been built at Proton’s new RM1.2 billion plant extension in Tanjung Malim has rolled off the production line on December 13, 2019.
A rolled out ceremony was held, and it was officiated by the Minister of International Trade and Industry Datuk Darell Leiking, Chairman of Proton datuk Seri Syed Faizak, President and chief executive officer of Geely Auto Group An Chonghui, as well as senior management members of Proton.
The Proton X70 was launched on December 12, 2018. During the launch, Proton was committed to start production at Tanjung Malim by the end of 2019.
“Today marks a historical milestone for Proton as we take another step towards being a global automotive brand. By producing the Proton X70 in Tanjung Malim, we have taken a quantum leap in our abilities as this is by far our most ambitious undertaking to date. The new plant will not only produce future products jointly developed with Geely but it will also be a centre for right-hand-drive production as we begin to export to countries all over the world,” said Syed Faisal Albar in a statement.
While building the RM1.2 billion extension, the company also worked together with local and overseas vendors to ensure a supply chain for parts requirement to built its first SUV would be in place when production activities began.
“Proton has undergone a tremendous transformation over the past two years. This experience has worked out very well for us at Geely Auto as we are happy to help Proton realize its global aspirations. We will continue to support Proton as it grows in the Malaysian market and in the wider ASEAN region and beyond,” said An.
By starting production of the Proton X70 in Tanjung Malim, Proton has unofficially set-off new developments in Malaysia’s automotive vendor ecosystem. In preparation for the commencement of manufacturing activities, Proton worked closely with its local vendors to match them with other companies who were already supplying components for the SUV.
These efforts have resulted in 7 new joint-ventures being formed as both local and foreign companies started partnerships based in Malaysia to share competencies and production resources. Other deals achieved by the effort includes technical agreement and foreign direct investments, resulting in a total investment of RM263 million and the creation of 1,084 jobs as the vendor community gears up to create to high technology components for the Proton X70 and future models.
“By committing to produce the Proton X70 and future models at Tanjung Malim, Proton has helped develop the vendor community. This is vital as vendors are the anchor for Malaysia’s automotive industry and are a major contributor to the economy. The introduction of new technologies will help develop industry competencies and going forward, the government is hopeful this will allow Malaysia to penetrate global markets and be a leader in the supply of automotive components,” said Darell.