branded goods -something to be proud of
Boleh"- a slogan
that have somehow affected Malaysians with its positive "we can do it' attitude.
We have all heard it and we are starting to believe it. The recent achievements
of the Mount Everest team, Datuk Azhar's voyage around the world, the Petronas
twin tower only serve to further enhance this.
We've celebrated our 42nd
year of independence and there is a lot to show. Indeed, we have many reasons
to be proud of Malaysia and being of Malaysians. One of them is the ability
of our manufacturing industries to produce goods that are on par, if not better
than those imported ones.
That was not reality ten
years ago. People looked up to imported goods and were willing to pay the hefty
price for the brands. Some did not realise that the products were actually manufactured
in Malaysia, exported to foreign countries and re-imported into the country
under foreign labels.
Our car industry is one
goods example of Malaysia's success story. The first batch of Malaysian cars,
Proton Saga magma which was introduced in 1985 was a great success. It was produced
at a time when the quality of Malaysian-made products viewed with sceptisms
and suspicions by customers. Since then, Perusahaan Otomobil Nasional Berhads
has came out with Proton Saga Megavalve in 1991, Proton Iswara, Proton Wira,
Proton Satria, Proton Tiara and the semi-luxury Proton Perdana.
In fact Proton cars are
very popular in Malaysia because they are affordable and presentable. Our cars
have also made waves in the overseas markets - Europe, the middle East and Asia
Pacific regions. The company's latest acquisition, Lotus Cars Asia Pacific which
is based in England manufactures the famous Lotus sports cars.
Another make that has made
Malaysia proud is the Perodua Kancil. First introduced in mid 90s, the car is
well accepted by the public. Its latest model, the trendy Kembara which is positioned
as an alternative to the saloon type is still trying to find its place in the
market. Other models under Perodua include the Rusa vannete and Perkasa truck.
Of course, there are the
Modenas Kris and Jaguh motorcycles. Branded products of Malaysia also include
its electronics goods. Products of KHIND and Malaysia Electric Company (MEC)
are well received by the local and export markets.
Malaysia is right on track
in its quest for Vision 2020. Although she is not spared by the recession as
indicated by the general drop in the sales of most consumer goods, governmet
is putting in efforts to encourage spending especially on Malaysian products.
The "Buy Malaysian Products" campaign which was re-launched recently, the lifting
of ruling limiting retailers to only six sales a year and reduction in the repayment
of the monthly instalment of outstanding balance of credit cards from 15% to
5% will hopefully boost spending.
Whatever misgiving consumers
have about Made in Malaysia products, just remember that we have come a long
way since that time when goods assembled here had to be labelled "Made in Japan"
to restore faith in their quality. We should be proud of our coutry for we have
achieved so much in so little time.