The first university invested in is Penang's Universiti Sains Malaysia (USM), which is expected to boost capabilities in smart manufacturing and artificial intelligence.
Micron Technology Malaysia, on 7 January 2022 (Friday), announced that it will invest RM1mn in universities, and fund its research to advance tech manufacturing in Malaysia. The first university to receive the funding is Universiti Sains Malaysia (USM), in Penang.
The annoucement was also capped with a virtual Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) ceremony between Micron and USM, which featured Amarjit Singh Sandhu, Corporate Vice President and Country Manager of Micron Malaysia, and Dr Faisal Rafiq Bin Mahamd Adikan, Vice Chancellor of USM. They were joined by Chief Minister of Penang, Chow Kon Yeow, and Deputy Chief Executive Officer (CEO) of Malaysian Investment Development Authority (MIDA), Sivasuriyamoorthy Sundara Raja.
According to Malaysian Investment Development Authority (MIDA), this partnership between Micron and USM will accelerate the innovation of semiconductor materials to increase Malaysia's export output and endeavours in STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics) development, as well as expand its capabilities in smart manufacturing and artificial intelligence to enable Malaysia's advances in multiple sectors, including manufacturing, communications, computing, healthcare, and education.
Latest figures revealed that, between January 2021 and September 2021, Malaysia's electrical and electronics (E&E) industry recorded RM63.4bn in approved investments with "anticipation of creating more than 22,000 jobs for aspiring skilled Malaysians".
Drawing reference to the positive outlook, Sivasuriyamoorthy Sundara Raja, Deputy CEO, MIDA, believed that this latest investment will help "build a resilient semiconductor ecosystem that supports Malaysia’s competitiveness as the destination of choice for future investments" and will bring a catalytic effect to developing young technology innovators and leaders to drive success in the industry.
"This partnership between Micron and USM is set to create new growth opportunities and we welcome such collaborations to transpire between other various institutors and companies," he added,
Sharing his sentiments on the investment, Amarjit Singh Sandhu, Corporate Vice President and Country Manager, Micron Malaysia said: "Malaysia is critical to our global manufacturing footprint, and we hope the funding and knowledge transfer to local universities will strengthen the local semiconductor ecosystem, advance R&D and deepen science, technology, and engineering skills in the local talent pool.
"We aim to use our presence and influence to contribute to Malaysia’s economy, including generating quality jobs and increasing the country’s productivity, efficiency, and global competitiveness."
Penang's Chief Minister Chow chimed in on Facebook, calling the occasion a "great pride of Penang" as the state's very own university was first identified by Micron to propel the industry forward.
Image / Micron Malaysia's Facebook