Malaysia vehicle thefts down 37%

Spare parts market driving car thefts

Malaysia vehicle thefts down 37%

Insurance News

By Gabriel Olano

Vehicular thefts in Malaysia decreased by 37% in 2020 compared to 2019, according to a non-profit organisation.

The Vehicle Theft Reduction Council (VTREC) said that thefts have gone down from 11,675 in 2019 to 7.400 cases in 2020. This meant that the average number of vehicles stolen per day decreased from 32 to 20, The Star reported.

“According to statistics from Insurance Services Malaysia, 3,993 motorcycles, 2,981 private cars and 426 commercial vehicles were stolen last year,” said VTREC coordinator Mas Tina Abdul Hamid, who spoke at the soft launch of the Vehicle Theft Public Awareness Campaign on Monday.

According to Mas Tina, the Malaysian-made Proton Wira was the most-stolen car in 2020, with 353 incidents. The Proton Iswara was next at 273, followed by the Toyota Hilux with 209. Most of the top 10 most stolen cars were from local automakers Proton and Perodua.

Formed in 2007, VTREC is a non-profit organisation composed by stakeholders in government and the insurance industry, including the General Insurance Association of Malaysia (PIAM), Malaysia Takaful Association, Royal Malaysia Police, Transport Ministry, and Road Transport Department.

According to Deputy Commissioner Datuk Dev Kumar of Bukit Aman Criminal Investigation Department, while the decline in vehicle thefts was positive, more can be done to combat the crime.

Car theft syndicates are resorting to increasingly sophisticated means to steal cars, he said. The police official also observed that local cars were being stolen and cannibalised for spare parts, while foreign-made vehicles were being sold overseas.

PIAM chief executive Mark Lim noted that the Proton Wira, despite having low value in the used car market, was a popular target of thieves as production of new parts for the model had been discontinued.

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