Kerajaan negeri Sabah telah mengumumkan subsidi yang besar bertujuan untuk meringankan beban kewangan pelajar Sabah yang belajar di institusi pengajian tinggi di Semenanjung Malaysia, Sarawak dan Labuan. Ketua Menteri Datuk Seri Hajiji Noor mendedahkan bahawa sejumlah RM10 juta telah diperuntukkan untuk menyediakan subsidi tiket penerbangan, berjumlah RM600 setiap pelajar.

Menurut The Star, Hajiji membuat pengumuman itu semasa melawat Pulau Pinang, di mana beliau bertemu dengan pelajar Sabah semasa majlis berbuka puasa. Tegasnya, subsidi yang diambil daripada peruntukan khas Ketua Menteri itu adalah langkah bantuan sekali sahaja yang direka untuk memberi manfaat secara langsung kepada pelajar.


The state government of Sabah has announced a significant subsidy aimed at easing the financial burden on Sabahan students studying at higher learning institutions in Peninsular Malaysia, Sarawak, and Labuan. Chief Minister Datuk Seri Hajiji Noor revealed that a total allocation of RM10 million has been dedicated to providing air ticket subsidies, amounting to RM600 per student.

According to The Star, Hajiji made the announcement while visiting Penang, where he met with Sabahan students during a breaking-of-fast event. He emphasised that the subsidy, drawn from the Chief Minister’s special allocation, is a one-time assistance measure designed to directly benefit the students. (more…)

Great news for EV fans in Sabah! The first public EV charging station in Sabah has been launched by Regas Premium Sabah and is situated in the T1 @ Bundusan parking garage’s basement.

This not only promotes the use of EVs but also lines up with government incentives meant to boost environmentally friendly modes of transportation.

In order to create a charging network that is accessible, practical, and in step with the rising demand for environmentally friendly transportation across the country, Regas Premium Sabah has partnered with JomCharge, a well-known leader in the EV charging solutions market.


East Malaysia is truck country and with the Ford Ranger as its core model, Sime Darby Auto ConneXion (SDAC) has made sure it has a good presence there to offer one of the best trucks in the market.

Over the years, the company, which has been the sole distributor for Ford vehicles in Malaysia since 2008, has steadily built up its network in the region and recently added another dealership in Sabah. With this new dealership SDAC-Ford now has 37 outlets nationwide.

Operated by Rightpower Corporation Sdn Bhd, Ford Kota Kinabalu (Penampang) is the second Ford 3S Centre in the state capital and the eighth outlet in East Malaysia.


BHPetrol RON95 Euro4M

In its aim to increase its presence in the country, Volvo Car Malaysia has not forgotten East Malaysia. Last November, it appointed Sebangga Mitsinbo Sdn. Bhd as a dealer-partner in Sabah and recently, the same business partner opened a new 3S (Sales, Service & Spare Parts) centre in Kota Kinabalu, Sabah.

Sebangga Mitsinbo Sdn. Bhd. (part of the Sebangga Group and formerly known as Sebangga Auto) joins Volvo Car Malaysia’s network of 13 dealers across the country. It is the sole authorised Volvo car dealer for the state of Sabah.

“Volvo Car Malaysia and the Sebangga Group share the same vision of protecting what is important, which is why we are honoured to have Sebangga Mitsinbo as our 14th 3S centre in Malaysia. As a brand, we want to enable a dynamic driving experience for our Sabahan customers, as they journey on the road, in life and with the brand, while also caring for the planet through a more sustainable drive with Volvo Cars,” said Nalin Jain, MD of Volvo Car Malaysia.

“With the establishment of a 3S centre in Kota Kinabalu, it reinforces our commitment to make roads safer – our vision is that no one should be seriously injured or killed in a new Volvo car.  With this partnership, our hope for this new dealership is to make premium, safe and quality vehicles accessible to the Sabahan community and from there, spur a movement of being safe on the road,” he added.

Volvo in Sabah

Volvo Retail Experience
Inspired by the brand’s Scandinavian-inspired ideals and heritage, the Sebangga Mitsinbo 3S Centre adheres to Volvo Car’s retail standard – the Volvo Retail Experience (VRE). The open space and minimalistic-but-functional furniture are part of the Volvo design language which creates a contemporary luxury experience.

The two-storey space features a showroom at the ground floor, a service centre, a Volvo Car Lifestyle Collection and an Accessories showcase. Volvo’s latest models will be on display and visitors can request for test drives of the XC40, XC60, XC90, S60 and S90.

Volvo XC40
XC40 – one of the Volvo models in the current range.

“This partnership with Volvo resonates well with our vision, in that we, too, value life above all. With Volvo being the pioneers in automotive safety, we are proud to carry the brand under our group and continue to strengthen their position as well as our mutual goal in protecting what is important. The addition of this 3S centre here in Sabah is part of our journey together with Volvo to help make roads safer for passengers and vehicles,” said Dato’ Arif Ambrose Ng, Chairman of Sebangga Group.

“At Volvo Cars, we understand that the value, quality and accessibility of services are just as important as the car, which is why we remain committed to ensuring that all of our customers experience a seamless and premium journey of acquiring and owning a Volvo car,” said Mr. Nalin.

Volvo Car Malaysia introduces Volvo SELEKT for those who want pre-owned Volvos


Although Sabah is some distance away from Proton’s headquarters in Peninsular Malaysia, attention to its business in the state is just as much as for any other state in the country. As the customer base grows, there is a need to ensure that there are sufficient facilities to provide sales and aftersales services.

In fact, according to Proton’s CEO, sales in East Malaysia this year have seen a growth of 31%, whilst for Sabah, the increase was 39%, compared to the same period last year. “Brand perception has also shifted and this is evident from our increasing sales,” said Dr Li Chunrong, CEO of Proton, adding that the Saga remains a popular choice in the state.

Proton 3S outlet in Kota Kinabalu

In support of the need for network growth, Shirba Auto World Sdn Bhd has officially opened a new Proton 3S outlet in Kota Kinabalu, the state capital. It is the third Proton dealer outlet opened in Kota Kinabalu, joining 104 3S/4S outlets nationwide.

As a new Proton investor, Ridzuan Datuk Hj Lassim, Director of Shirba Auto World, sees a lot of opportunities in Proton. “The future business outlook for Proton is promising, especially with its range of new car models. It also gives a lot of confidence to the public that Proton is currently managed by a pool of talent with global experience. It is a company which is exciting, international, forward looking and ready to take on the market,” he said.

Proton 3S outlet in Kota Kinabalu

The outlet has a built-up area of 2,259 square metres with a showroom to view the various models and a service centre with 12 service bays. Customers can relax in the comfort of the lounge while they wait, and they have free access to wifi service.

“The initiatives that are put in place have resulted in us gaining confidence from investors and the market. Many have decided to invest in a dealership because they have witnessed the positive developments at Proton. They see Proton as a solid brand and are willing to partner with us,” Dr. Li said.


The beginning of the Malaysian car industry can be considered to have started in the mid-1960s when the government introduced its first policy for the automotive industry. The policy set a strategic direction with the implementation of preferential tariffs for carmakers that assembled their vehicles locally, as well as used parts obtained in Malaysia. It was one of the moves to take the country’s economy from being agriculture-based to industry-based.

Response was good from the carmakers and by the end of the 1960s, a number of assembly plants were operating and producing a variety of models. However, the majority of these plants were in Peninsular Malaysia – clustered in the Klang Valley and in Johor. This was because vehicle demand in Peninsular Malaysia was growing rapidly.

The East Malaysian states, on the other hand, were still largely lacking a proper road network and potential sales were also not high back then. Commercial vehicles and 4×4 vehicles like the Toyota Land Cruiser and Hilux were more popular than cars.

So while the development of the sales and service network was more active in Peninsular Malaysia, it was slow in Sabah and Sarawak. This is not to say that the states were neglected by the car companies, but it was a matter of the number of vehicles sold and the number of supporting outlets needed.

Proton 4S Sabah

Today, however, the East Malaysian market has grown substantially as the economies of the two states have advanced. This has been helped by the better roads and road network and rather than travel in bumpy light commercial vehicles, many East Malaysians now prefer passenger cars with more comfort.

Sabah gets Proton’s first flagship 4S centre
Perhaps in recognition of this progress, Proton chose the state of Sabah for its first flagship 4S centre in Malaysia. The brand new outlet is operated by Fook Loi Corporation (Sabah) Sdn Bhd and has a distinctive Corporate Identity that is associated with the new Proton which has come about following the partnership with Geely.

Setting up a dealership requires millions of ringgit in investment and as Proton has shown that the brand is on the ascendancy with rapidly growing sales, businessmen now see being a Proton dealership it as a viable investment.

Proton 4S Sabah

“Deciding to become a Proton dealer was not difficult because we see the potential for Proton in Sabah. The current range of Proton models is highly competitive and technologically advanced with features that appeal to the new generation of car buyers,” said Thomas Chiu Kui Yin, Group Executive Director of Fook Loi.

Additional Body & Paint services
Seeing much potential in the aftersales business, Fook Loi chose to go all the way and be a 4S outlet. This means it offers customers an added Body & Paint service for the repainting and restoration of vehicles to Proton’s standards when they have been damaged.

Proton 4S Sabah

Proton 4S Sabah

Proton 4S Sabah

Every aspect of the outlet adheres to Proton’s objective of giving customers a great experience and is spacious, comfortable as well as pleasing to the eye. It offers free wifi, a kids’ corner, ample parking space and a coffee area. Equally important, the outlet has well trained sales and service staff who can provide a high quality customer experience.

“These may seem like simple requirements, but they are critical ones. When customers walk into our showroom or service centre, they would like to be greeted by smiling faces and a beautifully lit area. This will then set the tone for more meaningful conversations and customers will feel welcomed and appreciated. Since outlets are our first point of contact, numerous steps have been taken to ensure that a wholesome experience starts here. These efforts have paid off. Our sales have been on an increasing trend and with our new products, we are confident that we are on track for the company’s return to profitability,” said Dr. Li Chunrong, CEO of Proton.



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