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    After posted a pre-tax loss of RM391.935 million in the fourth quarter ended March 31, 2009, Proton expects the better results for the first quarter due to higher sales of Proton Exora.Read the full news from Bernama below.

    EXORA HELPS PROTON CHALK BETTER RESULTS, SAYS MD

    Proton Holdings Bhd expects to report better results for the first quarter ended June 30 on the back of higher sales following the launch of its multi purpose vehicle Exora.

    “We have improved compared to the fourth quarter,” said managing director Datuk Syed Zainal Abidin Mohamad Tahir on the sidelines of the two-day Invest Malaysia 2009 conference at Shangri-la Hotel here Wednesday.

    The national car maker posted a pre-tax loss of RM391.935 million in the fourth quarter ended March 31, 2009 on the back of RM1.401 billion revenue.

    Syed Zainal Abidin said the better performance for the first three months of this year was due to higher sales following the launch of Exora which has “an order bank of three to four months”.

    Proton planned ship Exora to Indonesia and Thailand this year, he added.

    Asked on competition particularly from Perodua, Syed Zainal Abidin said: “Competition is there everyday. We are mindful about the movement of our competitors. I think competition is healthy but we have to strategise our plan.

    “When we introduced Exora, Toyota and Nissan also strategising their plans. It is something that we should not be totally worried. As a company, we will continue to come up with new variants and interesting ways to market our car.”

    On other markets for Exora besides Indonesia and Thailand, he said Proton would start focusing on other markets like the Middle East next year.

    “This calendar year is going to be mainly Asean including Singapore. Next year, we hope to do CKD (completely-knocked down) assemblies in China and Iran,” he said.

    On the legal dispute with Proton’s former Chinese partner, Syed Zainal Abidin said: “We have already started the process. The first judgement during the arbitration was on our favour. They have filed the suit. We stand a very good case.

    “We don’t want to indulge in detail. We consulted our lawyer. We believed we are very clear in what we do. We consulted also the government of China. We are quite clear. So let allow the court case process.”

    Last Friday, Proton said Goldstar Heavy Industrial Co Ltd had filed a suit against the group alleging failure to meet obligations under a 2002 joint-venture agreement.

    Proton’s units, Proton Automobiles (China) Ltd and Perusahaan Otomobil Nasional Sdn Bhd, had been served with a Memorandum of Complaint by Goldstar for the alleged breach of contract

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