During a Q&A session after the signing of the Geely-Proton deal, second finance minister Datuk Seri Johari Abdul Ghani has said the government will reimburse Proton RM1.1 billion for the amount it has spent on research and development (R&D) to produce new cars.

The amount will be given after the definitive agreement has been finalised, which is set to happen before the end of July. Johari also noted that Proton had spent RM3.5 billion in the past on R&D, and quashed rumours that Proton will be receiving a further RM1.7 billion.

As for the previous RM1.5 billion soft loan, it was revealed that Geely will repay the amount in full. The loan was approved by the Malaysian government back in April 2016, with Proton agreeing to several terms, including identifying a foreign strategic partner.

In a previous report back in July 2014, then Proton chairman Tun Dr Mahathir Mohamad had requested the government to reimburse some of the money the company invested on R&D projects. Proton’s then chief technical officer (now Proton Edar CEO) Abdul Rashid Musa revealed later in October 2015 that the company has invested over RM18 billion in R&D since the firm’s establishment in 1983.

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