Thursday, November 09, 2006

Govt sells 51% of Proton?

Govt okays 51% sale of Proton manufacturing

Oh Shit, Bumi equity is gone! Govt agreed to sell Proton Manufacturing?

The government is believed to have finally decided on giving foreign parties 51% control in the manufacturing operations of Proton Holdings Bhd, with German carmaker Volkswagen AG being mentioned as a potential partner, a source said.

What will remain is the domestic distribution arm but the manufacturing arm will be headed by the foreign partner, which will bring in technical expertise and help expand Proton¡¦s production for export.

Parts and component makers that supply to Proton have been suffering because of Proton's declining production volume.

It is learnt that Proton has halved its production volume to about 5,000 units a month for November and December given its huge stockpiles of unsold inventories that have to be cleared by year-end.

Lower production from Proton means fewer jobs for its parts and components suppliers.

The industry is getting impatient with the numerous memorandums of understanding (MOUs) that Proton has signed in recent months with French carmaker PSA Peugeot Citroen, Mitsubishi Motors Corp, Chery Automobile and others.

What happen? Proton cars are not selling?

Proton claims that its woes will be over in a year.

Newly-appointed managing director Syed Zainal Abidin Syed Mohamed Tahir said he expected that by the year, Proton will be cost effective, its quality issue fully-addressed and it will have a wider range of products to appeal to a broader market. Proton is in a spot as it not only suffers from a perception issue on the quality of its cars and it is no longer profitable.

It has under-utilised capacity and is selling mostly variants instead of bringing into the market new models to match those of its rivals. It has not been able to align itself to a global automotive partner, a move which is necessary, given that markets would be liberalised.

It is also not cost efficient.

Since taking the helm, Ayed Zainal has been busy looking into how to improve the systems and processes at Proton as well as quality and costs.

Would this move reduce Bumi equity? What will happen to the NEP?

Why should proton sell to foreigners? Must sell to Bumis. Why not sell the stake to Syed mokhtar? He wants it? If Khairy would only sell his stakes in ECM-Libra to Bumis, why not Proton? This is contrary to what UMNO preach? We are selling to foreigners, how can?

Unequal playing fields? Where is Ghani? Why is he not talking about discrimination and marhinalisation? Where are the UMNO loud speakers? Aren' t they worried about it?

Wait for mahathir to make his statements ...

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