August 10, 2020

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Malaysia Pushing to Grow Aerospace and Air Mobility Industries

Mohd Redzuan bin Md Yusof
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Malaysia’s Entrepreneur Development Minister stated that despite skepticism about the country’s “flying cars” projects, the government must continue to facilitate the aeronautical industry to create an environment where the tech industry could grow.

The Minister noted that he wants to make Malaysia a base for rocket launches, with the permission of the country’s citizens of course.

The Minister pointed out that the Malaysian private initiative for the “flying car” was headed a Malaysian-based drone services company is reportedly raising RM126 million from top regional venture capital firms to fuel growth.

The company is a global player in the drone services industry and is ranked seventh internationally by the Drone Industry Insights, the Minister noted. Currently, it employs people in 24 countries around the world and it is a strategic partner in our air mobility programme.

The Malaysian flying car is the Vector drone point-to-point transportation system, which was being crash-tested in Japan and had yet to arrive.

According to another article, the Entrepreneur Development Minister attended a private viewing in Subang of the flying car.

The so-called super drone is a joint venture project between a local company and a foreign company, and such visits are usual for the ministry and relevant agencies to get a first-hand look at entrepreneurship ventures, the minister’s office said in a statement.

It was noted that the project will spur R&D activities in the aerospace and air mobility industries through joint ventures between local and international companies in the area of assembly, as well as parts and components manufacturing based on the latest technologies. This includes big data, artificial intelligence and the Internet of things.

The project is a private-driven initiative which does not involve any financial implication on the part of the government, the statement said.

In addition, the Minister was also briefed on the company’s plans to develop manned aerial vehicle installation facilities and hope to produce 10,000 units annually.

The ministry is also in discussion with the Transport Ministry and the Civil Aviation Authority of Malaysia (CAAM) on the need to draft a conducive and holistic law to support the development of this industry.

CAAM said the location of the planned test flight at the UniKL Malaysian Institute of Aviation Technology Hangar in Subang was in an area that was under strict supervision by air traffic control.

The location is less than 200m from the commercial airline and helicopter traffic and clearly within the Subang Airport Terminal Control Zone.

In addition to this, the EH216 was only issued a Special Flight Permit by its State of Design (Civil Aviation Administration of China), which is limited to conduct research and development flights in Grand World Science Park in Guangzhou, CAAM said in a statement.

OpenGov Asia reported on this story in October, noting that the project was led by the private sector and sponsored by local companies.

Cyberjaya was chosen as the testbed to develop the air mobility industry, which had the potential to push the development in other areas like new types of insurance, financial tech, artificial intelligence and the Internet of Things (IoT), among others.

The flying vehicle would be able to travel from Kuala Lumpur to Penang within an hour, which is far quicker than the four hours it would take to travel by road, adding that the prototype vehicle would be able to accommodate two or three passengers.

The development of the flying car is the new government’s initiative to promote the use of high technologies in the private sector to boost productivity. The car can be used in sectors such as agriculture and aerospace, among others.

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