Geely signs heads of agreement with Malaysia’s DRB-HICOM
Geely Holding Group (Geely Holding) and DRB-HICOM Berhad have signed a heads of agreement (HOA) to reinforce the next phase of collaboration between the two companies.
Signed at the Malaysia-China Business Forum held in Beijing on April 1, the HOA aims to accelerate development of the Automotive High-Tech Valley (AHTV) as Malaysia’s next-generation vehicle hub in Tanjong Malim covering the extensive automotive and mobility solutions value chain.
The focus of the HOA is the development of an integrated automotive city that will give birth to a hub for a new energy vehicle (NEV) industry within Malaysia. AHTV will initially occupy an area of approximately 1,000 acres and will be expanded accordingly to cater for future needs.
Over the next 10 years, AHTV is expected to attract some MYR32 billion (USD7.26 billion) worth of investments, including by Malaysian national car company PROTON jointly owned by Geely Holding and DRB-HICOM. AHTV will also receive direct and indirect benefits from PROTON’s plan to fully relocate its manufacturing facilities to Tanjong Malim by 2026. PROTON currently produces five models in AHTV and another two models in Shah Alam, Selangor.
AHTV will also include a research-based university to nurture new talents and development in areas of new and emerging technologies for the industry and the automotive sector in general. It will also house an R&D centre that will provide carmakers with a tropicalised setting to test their vehicles.
With the global trend shifting towards NEV, Geely’s role in the development of AHTV is apt, given the Chinese carmaker’s wide experience with electrification and green vehicles. Geely Holding’s flagship brand, Geely Auto and new intelligent luxury EV brand Zeekr has successfully launched several new energy models. The company has also invested extensively in battery and new energy vehicle technologies as well as announced plans to launch more than 30 new energy models across its brands by 2025.