Malaysia-listed EP Manufacturing Berhad (EPMB) has announced that it will invest MYR 100 million ($20.98 million) to build an electric vehicle (EV) automotive manufacturing facility in Melaka, Malaysia.

In a joint statement on Friday, EPMB and Malaysian Investment Development Authority (MIDA) said that this strategic move is part of EPMB commitment to establishing a manufacturing hub for energy-efficient vehicles (EEVs) and EVs in Malaysia, contributing significantly to the global shift towards sustainability.

According to the statement, the establishment of the new facility will unfold in several phases at the HICOM Pegoh Industrial Park.

This project is poised to create around 1,000 new job opportunities in the state of Melaka, bolstering the state’s growing significance within the regional and global EV industry.

Upon completion, the first phase of this new facility will have the capacity to produce up to 30,000 vehicles a year.

This milestone project for the group solidifies EPMB’s strategic partnership with BAIC International Development Co Ltd (BAIC International), a Fortune Global 500 company and a major player in China’s automotive industry.

EPMB signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) with BAIC International in August, paving the way for local production of BAIC’s BJ40P and X55II sport utility vehicles (SUVs), right-hand drive (RHD) internal combustion engine (ICE) vehicles, and EVs.

EPMB also expects to assemble vehicles for Great Wall Motor Sales Malaysia Sdn. Bhd. (GWM Malaysia), a subsidiary of Great Wall Motor Co., Ltd. (GWM) at this plant, based on the MoU which was signed by both parties on October 18, 2023.

“The establishment of an EV manufacturing facility is a pivotal step in realizing our comprehensive vision of developing a 360 supply chain for Malaysia’s EV market,” said Ahmad Razlan Mohamed, Group Chief Executive Officer of EP Manufacturing Berhad.

“Collaborating closely with our strategic partner, BAIC, we are poised to construct a cutting-edge EV manufacturing facility in Melaka, heralding the commencement of the next chapter in our growth trajectory,

“Additionally, we are keenly looking forward to collaborating with GWM, our esteemed customer, in contributing to position Malaysia as a central hub for EV and EEV in the ASEAN region,” he added.

EPMB received approval for a manufacturing license from Malaysia’s Ministry of Investment, Trade, and Industry (MITI) on July 11, 2023 allowing the manufacture and assembly of four-wheel EEVs, electric passenger vehicles, and electric commercial vehicles.

“Such collaboration with BAIC is a testament of their confidence in Malaysia’s attractiveness as an investment destination and underscores the nation’s cutting-edge automotive manufacturing capabilities, with EPMB leading the way,” said Wira Arham Abdul Rahman, Chief Executive Officer of MIDA.

According to him, this new manufacturing facility, dedicated to EEVs and EVs, perfectly aligns with the Low Carbon Mobility Blueprint (LCMB), National Automotive Policy (NAP) 2020 and Malaysia’s New Industrial Master Plan 2030 (NIMP 2030) aspirations.

“These policies are rooted in harnessing opportunities in ESG sensitive markets and swiftly adopting technology to enhance the technological ecosystem of our manufacturing sector and Malaysia’s commitment towards sustainable transportation,” he added.

It is noted that Malaysia has successfully secured MYR 26.2 billion ($5.5 billion) in approved investments for the EV sector through 59 projects from 2018 to the first half of 2023.

The government, through MITI and MIDA, is dedicated to facilitating investment opportunities and promoting growth in the EV automotive segment.

Listed in 1997, EPMB is an automotive supplier operating five plants and factories located across Malaysia, supplying modular assemblies, safety and critical components to carmakers including Proton, Perodua, Honda, Mazda, Toyota & Kia.

Aiming to be a leading automotive player, EPMB is providing a 360° supply chain for Malaysia’s EV market, spanning manufacturing, assembly, sales, and marketing of EVs.

Under this initiative, EPMB is partnering with major automotive players to manufacture, assemble and distribute EVs, such as Blueshark electric scooters, in Malaysia and other Southeast Asian markets.

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