Nov 20 – The Government has called off negotiations with two international car manufacturers – Volkswagen and General Motors.
What’s really happening? It appears to be another wag the dog story!
The local media reported that the Second Finance Minister Tan Sri Nor Mohamed Yakcop said the Cabinet Committee (which comprised several ministers) on the National Automotive Policy had met and decided that circumstances to seek a foreign strategic partner has changed and the objectives for such a partnership have also changed.
Tan Sri Nor Mohamad was also reported that he expected Proton to return to profit in 2009 and that during Proton’s next financial year, the losses would be “significantly reduced.”
What are these circumstances?
What would be forecast performance for the next two years?
After all it is the National Car and the public deserves to know. Proton has lost RM 500 million during their last financial year and this is no small change. Most importantly, the decision makers must be accounted for their decision made.
The current way that the running of the National Car is being handled is like kids playing “masak-masak”. One day they want to sell and the next day they decided to call it off. Professionally, such a decision is making the country a laughing stock. They could have continued the negotiations and ask for a much higher sale price and maintain to this price throughout. It the price could be agreed upon, it would have been a very good deal. It not, we still could have achieved the original objective of not selling Proton and we would have kept our reputation intact. It would have been a win-win situation either way.
Now the questions haunting me and also I believe most Malaysian are;
What if we lose more than 500 million in the next financial year?
Can Tan Sri Mohamad take responsibility for his comment that losses will be – significantly reduced?
What happens if we continue to lose by 2009?
Will some one accounted for the decision made today if we fail?
Will the rakyat still be penalized by the high prices of imported cars to reduce Proton’s losses?
Will the decision made on November 20, 2007 signify the final straw for the drowning national marker?
Only time will tell !