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M’sia, Netherlands urged to join hands in green tech

KUALA LUMPUR: The Netherlands and Malaysia, which is in the course of going green, can join hands in developing green technologies, says Netherlands Ambassador to Malaysia Harry Molenaar.

“The Netherlands has 30 years of sustainability and green technology development experience and it could offer know-how to Malaysia, in areas including agrilogistics, smart highways and wastewater management,” he said.

In the Netherlands, the government assumed a critical role in regulating the industry in the initial phase, however, the private sector had later fully embraced the call, making the country highly successful in the green technology sector, he said.

Malaysia, therefore, has to get both the private sector and the government in the same camp in the quest of going green, Molenaar said in his keynote address at the International Greentech & Eco Products Malaysia Conference 2014, here Wednesday.

Meanwhile, Malaysia Debt Ventures Bhd Managing Director and Chief Executive Officer Datuk Md Zubir Ansori Yahaya said Malaysian companies have been hindered by the high upfront investment costs and slow returns on investment in the green sector.

For instance, a five-megawatt solar farm needs an investment of between RM35 million and RM45 million while a biomass plant with the same capacity required as much as RM60 million, he said.

“For companies looking for quick bucks, green technology is not their field because the return on investments will take between 9-12 years,” said Md Zubir, who spoke at the conference.

He encouraged more companies to make use of the current financing available in the market.

The Ministry of Energy, Green Technology and Water has proposed to establish an Islamic green bank in 2016 in a bid to encourage more companies to engage in research and development activities in that sector.

The green bank will be modelled after the likes in the United States, the United Kingdom and Japan by offering seed funding.

It is planned to succeed the Green Technology Financing Scheme (GTFS) launched in 2010 and will end in December 2015. – Bernama

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