Intel Corp has announced a major investment of over USD 7 billion to build a new chip packaging and testing factory in Bayan Lepas, Penang, in the midst of a worldwide shortage of semiconductors that is expected to last into 2023. The factory is presumably going to begin operation in 2024. Intel is also expected to announce new investment locations in the US and Europe this year.
The investment is to be undertaken by its subsidiary Intel Electronics (Malaysia) Sdn Bhd and would expand its Malaysian operation across the northern states of Penang and Kedah. The Malaysian Government estimates that a total of 4,000 new job opportunities within Intel and 5,000 jobs related to construction activities will be created following the investment.
The American largest chipmaker opened its production facility in Penang in 1972, the first assembly facility outside of the US. By 1975 Intel has employed over 1,000 manpower at the 5-acre site, making it a crucial part of the company’s global manufacturing chain. Since then, Malaysia’s chip assembly industry has also become one of the largest contributors to global trade, accounting for more than a tenth of over USD 20 billion. The country also reportedly accounts for 13% of global chip packaging and testing, with 7% of the world’s semiconductor trade passing through Malaysia including for value-added activities conducted in local factories before the chips are shipped to final destinations.
(Sources: CNBC; The Edge Markets; The New Straits Times)