The government has not made any decision to invest in the third national car project, says Finance Minister Lim Guan Eng.
He said the third national car project required a huge capital outlay and, as such, it needed the involvement of the private sector.
However, he said the government has no problem in providing allocations to carry out research and development (R&D).
"To date, the government has no such allocation (to invest in building third national car) under Budget 2019 except for R&D. What is wrong in us carrying out R&D if it could be used by Proton or DRB-Hicom...not necessarily for the third national car.
“To build the third national car will require investments running into billions of USD not just RM10 or RM20 million. This we have to take cognition...for those who are attempting to make frivolous claims, we hope they do not make assumptions based on inaccurate and baseless information,” he told reporters after opening the upgraded Complaint Counter of the Butterworth Police Station in Butterworth, Penang today.
Lim was criticising the statements of several quarters including the opposition which accused the government of investing in the third national car project.
In June, Prime Minister Dr Mahathir Mohamad voiced the proposal to create a new brand of national car to replace Proton which was no longer considered a national car when almost half of its equity was sold to Geely, a foreign company.
Lim said R&D is something which should be encouraged and the government encourages any party to carry out R&D to make Malaysia an innovative country.
Meanwhile, Lim who is also the MP for Bagan said the police station which is almost 50 years old would be renovated in stages to give it a new image to the people and visitors in line with current development.