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In line with the nation’s aim to be a regional energy-efficient vehicle (EEV) hub, UK-based Institute of the Motor Industry (IMI) has been working closely with the Malaysian government since early last year to provide training support across a network of community colleges, with an emphasis on electric and hybrid vehicles.

The institute, which is a professional body for individuals working in the motor industry, said that there are currently 264 EEV trained technicians in Malaysia, but says there should be a greater need to focus on training more EEV-capable technicians as demand for such vehicles are due to increase.

Speaking at the IMI conference held earlier in the week, IMI CEO Steve Nash said that more technicians need to be EEV trained to cater to the growing demand. “We have always expected demand for electric or hybrid vehicles to rise, especially with the growing public awareness for alternative fuelled vehicles,” he said.

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He added that Malaysia definitely has a strong potential to become the main regional training hub for electric vehicles, as the IMI saw the country as being ahead of others in the region in the area of electric vehicle adoption.

The Kepala Batas Community College’s Technology Centre for Hybrid and Electric Vehicle and Pekan Community College are among the IMI Approved Centres that have begun the process to equip technicians with new EEV skills.

The IMI offers over 250 technical and non-technical qualifications and accreditations through 560 training partners in more than 13 countries around the world. In Malaysia, the IMI has 24 Approved Centres comprising of community colleges, automotive companies like Nasim, Bermaz Motor and educational bodies such as the Otomotif College. An average of 1,500 candidates are trained per year in these local organisations.