The Minister of Investment, Trade, and Industry (MITI), Tengku Datuk Seri Zafrul Abdul Aziz, clarified that the government has no current plans to phase out the approved permit (AP) system for car imports.
He assured reporters that the AP system is still in effect, even though Tesla Inc, a global electric vehicle (EV) maker, has been granted permission to sell cars in the country without adhering to the usual AP rules.
Tengku Zafrul made this statement while officiating at the Proton Global Investors and Vendors Convention 2023. He emphasized that there are no discussions at present about abolishing the AP system.
The government’s decision to allow Tesla to operate in the country without AP rules is part of the BEV Global Leaders initiative by MITI. The initiative aims to stimulate the demand for battery electric vehicles (BEV) in the local market and foster the development of a supportive ecosystem for BEV adoption.
Despite permitting Tesla to bypass the AP system, Tengku Zafrul clarified that the AP mechanism will still be in use. If any other carmaker brings the technology that Malaysia seeks, they will also be allowed to operate under the AP system.
The key criterion is the value and technological advancements that the companies can offer, and the government intends to treat all eligible companies consistently. The AP system is not exclusive to Tesla but extends to other carmakers who meet the required standards for technology and innovation.