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Former M'sia PM Mahathir becomes Proton chairman

Malaysian automaker Proton Holdings Bhd has appointed former prime minister Mahathir Mohamad as its chairman. He has also been named chairman of Proton's subsidiary, Group Lotus plc (Lotus).

KUALA LUMPUR: Malaysian automaker Proton Holdings Bhd has appointed former prime minister Mahathir Mohamad as its chairman.

He has also been named chairman of Proton's subsidiary, Group Lotus plc (Lotus).

Mahathir will assume the position from Mohd Khamil Jamil, who is stepping down as the executive chairman, but remains on the board of directors of the company.

Prior to his appointment as chairman, Mahathir had served as advisor of Proton from 2003, and after stepping down as prime minister.

Proton in a statement on Wednesday said Mahathir's determination to see the national carmaker succeed made it natural for him to step in as chairman, in what would be a new chapter in its journey.

"Dr Mahathir will now be able to dedicate more of his time at Proton as chairman. This will certainly continue to strengthen the company in its mission to become a globally recognised automotive player," chief executive officer Harith Abdullah said.

Meanwhile, Mohd Khamil said DRB-Hicom Bhd, the parent company of Proton, is honoured by Mahathir's acceptance to serve as chairman.

"In accepting the position, he has shown a willingness to spend time and effort in taking on the challenges that Proton faces," he said.  

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