The launch of the revised National Automotive Policy (NAP) has been shifted again, with the policy now set to be announced early next year. This was revealed by international trade and industry minister Datuk Darell Leiking today at the Proton X70 CKD rollout event in Tanjung Malim.

He said that there were still things to be incorporated into NAP 2020, which will cover the entire automotive eco-system. This includes new and emerging tech, reiterating what he said in October. “Works are in progress because we want to add a lot of things. As you can see in the coming days, if not weeks and months, something new will come of it and we have to be adaptive to it as well,” he had said back then.

The announcement of the reworked NAP has been in review since last July, and was previously due to be announced in the second quarter of this year. At last juncture, the policy was reportedly set to be presented to Cabinet for approval in November.

In September, Malaysia Automotive, Robotic and IoT Institute (MARii) CEO Datuk Madani Sahari revealed that the new NAP will be implemented in three phases until 2030, with the first phase ensuring the continuity of NAP 2014 and introducing necessary elements to prepare the country to become a producer of EEVs (energy efficient vehicles).

The new policy is expected to see a shift in focus from energy-efficient vehicles (EEV) to the ‘next-generation vehicle’ (NxGV), with the first phase of this focusing on battery production, management systems and the establishment of EV charging stations, while the following stages will focus on other technological advancements such as 5G connectivity.

The criteria for a national car will also be defined in the policy. As previously reported, six criteria make up the requirements: it has to be majority-owned by Malaysians, receive its funding from the public sector, be comprised of 75% local supply chain, have 98% local workers, have research and development conducted in Malaysia as well as to take steps to align with the definition of next-generation vehicles.