Euro 4 grade diesel to arrive in 2015

The plan to introduce a new fuel quality standard is expected to be included as part of the National Automotive Policy (NAP) to be announced by International Trade and Industry Minister Datuk Seri Mustapa Mohamed on Jan 15.

"The Euro 4 roll out plan is already at the final stage. Now it is only a matter of fine tuning the framework between the Energy, Green Technology and Water Ministry (Kettha), Finance Ministry and Domestic Trade and Consumer Affairs Ministry," the source said.

Sources also confirmed that the delay in the implementation of Euro 4 diesel was due to lengthy negotiations between government and oil companies.

"There has been indifferent assertion among the stakeholders when the government engaged the oil companies for the past few years. For example, oil companies have been requesting for flexibility and government funding to build the facilities for the new grade diesel," said the source.

"There's also the issue of government fuel subsidy with the introduction of Euro 4 since this new fuel quality standard would definitely cost more for consumers. Now, it is clear that Putrajaya is ready to introduce the new fuel grade," said the government insider.

When asked to confirm the introduction of Euro 4 in 2015, Malaysia Automotive Institute (MAI) chief executive officer Madani Sahari said Kettha would take the lead to introduce the new grade diesel.

"It cannot take too long because moving towards EEVs without having proper fuel standards is half baked," said Madani, after the CEO Roundtable: The Future of Malaysia's Auto Industry' at the Fourth Kuala Lumpur International Automotive Conference recently.

This is certainly good news to owners of clean diesel car models and consonant with the government's desire to turn Malaysia into the centre for energy-efficient vehicles (EEV).

On the NAP, it is believed that EEV requirements would be based on meeting a minimum fuel economy standard and CO2 emissions.

As the focal point and coordinator for the implementation of the new NAP, most fuel stations in the country are able to accommodate the enhanced variety of fuel grades and even if station revamp is required, the cost won't be excessive, according to MAI.

Robert Bosch (South East Asia) Pte Ltd president and managing director Martin Hayes concurred that among the key success factors for the automotive industry's future in Malaysia is the improvement of fuel and emission regulations.

"The adoption of Euro 4 standard would ensure global competitiveness for Malaysia, alongside the adoption of vehicle safety standards, that is crucial for export," he told Cars, Bikes & Trucks.

Volkswagen Group Malaysia CEO Dr Zeno Kerschbaumer said the introduction of Euro 4 diesel in 2015 would certainly augur well for the government's aspiration to make Malaysia as a hub for EEV.

"This will also allow our customers to enjoy the fuel efficient models," said Dr Kerschbaumer.


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