Posted by SM Maulana
– Rocky Bru
KJ, Shahrin’s & Natasha Hudson
You’ve probably heard of Shahrin Zahari as the husband of model-turned-actress Natasha Hudson. That image is about to change. Shahrin has just secured a government approval for some 1,200 open approved permits (AP) for hybrid cars which will make him one very hot player in the auto industry.
Word is the Government is going to provide a lot of tax breaks for Shahrin’s hybrid car venture come budget time as part of the Prime Minister’s new drive to inculcate frugal living as a solution to the fuel price woes.
Natasha’s husband partners a 22-year Nik Iruwan Nik Izani, who aspires to be a Formula One driver, in this AP venture. Young Iruwan’s dad is Nik Izani Nik Ibrahim, a senior VP in the Mofaz group. Shahrin’s dad is the late Datuk Zahari Wahab, a deputy chief executive of the Ranhill Group.
Khairy Jamaluddin is in the picture above because he and Shahrin are buddies (Shahrin is also an exco of Umno Putera). KJ has been in the picture before where AP is concerned. His first cousin Datuk Haniff Aziz, a former official with the Ministry of Trade and Industry, is one of Malaysia’s three ‘Heavenly Kings’ of APs. Haniff of Westar and Autostar fame is worth about RM300 million due to the AP business.
See Business Times’ article here for more details of the venture.
The news portal KL Pos has a bit more on Shahrin here. Excerpts:
“Shahrin ini juga merupakan AJK Putera Umno yang terkenal kerana sebahagian besar ahlinya mat rempit. Dapat Pingat Cemerlang Melaka yang membawa gelaran Dato’ pada hari keputeraan Gebenor Melaka Tun Khalil Yaakob tahun lepas.”
Natasha Hudson’s hubby is new AP King!
Premier Hybrid submits plan for tax breaks
PREMIER Hybrid Cars Sdn Bhd (PHC), which has won rights to import and distribute hybrid cars, has submitted a plan to the government for tax breaks, said its chairman Datuk Shahrin Zahari.
Hybrid cars normally cost about 25 per cent more than cars that run on petrol or gas and as such the tax breaks are designed to make the cars more competitive.
In a statement, Premier Hybrid said that a proposal has been submitted to the Ministry of Finance, but Business Times understands the proposal is now in final stages of evaluation by the International Trade and Industry Ministry (Miti).
Last week, International Trade and Industry Minister Tan Sri Muhyiddin Mohd Yassin said Miti, which is in charge of issuing APs, is considering revising the National Automotive Policy to encourage local automotive players to develop hybrid vehicles.
Tax breaks or other types of incentives to promote hybrid cars, if any, however, will likely be disclosed during the unveiling of the country’s annual budget, a source told Business Times.
Elsewhere, Business Times also understands that Premier Hybrid’s open AP rights could extend to as much as 1,200 permits, but for now it has rights to bring in some 20 hybrid cars.
Under the current system, APs have specific numerical quotas, but if a company manages to fulfill its basic sale order than it is eligible to apply for more APs, until the entire yearly quota for the sector is utilised.
There are basically two types of APs under the current system – the restricted APs and the open APs.
Holders of APs are allowed to bring any type of cars, based on specifications, even if a rival company has exclusive rights to distribute the cars here.
“We plan to invest as much as RM10 million to build up the sales infrastructure,” Shahrin said in an interview with Business Times.
The infrastructure includes sales, service, system and spare parts centres specifically designed for the needs of hybrid cars.
Shahrin is a low-profile businessman, with minor shareholdings in Vistel Solutions Bhd and Ranhill Bhd. His partner in Premier Hybrid is speed racer Nik Iruwan Nik Izani.