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Mitsubishi Motors and Proton signed memorandum on new cooperation agreement

Kuala Lumpur, February 3, 2006  — Mitsubishi Motors Corporation (MMC) and Malaysia's major automobile manufacturer Proton Holdings Berhad (Proton) today signed a memorandum of understanding for wider areas of corporation between the two companies.

The formal signing was witnessed by Datuk Seri Rafidah Aziz, Malaysia's Minister of International Trade and Industry.

The agreement includes cooperation in the following areas:
· Product development of new Proton vehicles
· Supply of components between Proton and Mitsubishi
· Technical support for production engineering and quality control
· Optimization of Proton's manufacturing facilities

The agreement is expected to help MMC expand its business in Malaysia, above its current importing business of CBU vehicles from Japan.

Meanwhile, Proton will be able to diversify its vehicle range and accelerate the effort to achieve better quality and manufacturing process.

MMC currently supplies various levels of components, including engine and transmission, to Proton for vehicles such as the Iswara, Wira, Satria, Arena, and Perdana.

Proton's first car, the Proton Saga, introduced in 1985, was manufactured with intensive collaboration between Proton and MMC. MMC had sold its 7.9% equity in Proton on March 9, 2004, although it continues to supply component technology and parts to Proton.

The cooperation between MMC and Proton is expected to contribute positively to the development of Malaysia's automobile industry, under the terms of the Japan-Malaysia Economic Partnership Agreement signed by Japanese Prime Minister Junichiro Koizumi and Malaysian Prime Minister Datuk Seri Abdullah Ahmad Badawi during the 9th Asean-Japan Summit last December.

Proton Holdings Berhad profile:

1. Head office: HICOM Industrial Estate, Batu 3, P.O.Box 7100 40918 Shah Alam, Selangor Darul Ehsan, Malaysia
2. Representative: Syed Zainal Abidin Syed Mohamed Tahir, Managing Director
3. Capitalization: MYR 549,213,002
4. Major shareholders:  Khazanah Nasional Berhad, 38.32%
Petroliam Nasional Berhad, 7.85%
5. Business lines: Development, designing and manufacturing of automobiles
6. Highlights: Established in 1983 as a joint venture between Heavy Industries Corporation of Malaysia Bhd. (HICOM), Mitsubishi Motors Corporation and Mitsubishi Corporation to realize former Prime Minister Dato' Seri Dr Mahathir Mohamad's project to build a Malaysian car.
In 1985 Proton produced the Proton SAGA, the first Malaysian car, with all-round assistance from Mitsubishi Motors and Mitsubishi Corporation.
Launching the WAJA — the first Proton model to be largely designed and engineered in-house — in 2000 and the GEN-2 — powered by the first engine developed by the company itself — in 2004, the company continues to build up its engineering and technical capabilities and today enjoys wide-based support from the Malaysian population as a symbol of the country's on-going industrialization.

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