Sharp has been in Malaysia for over 25 years now and is still expanding. To-date we have six companies employing a total of more than 8,500 people. Each company has its own specialisation in manufacturing products for the export and domestic markets. Our total sales for fiscal year 2000 was RM6.8 billion of which approximately 90% was exported to over 120 countries.
Sharp Electronics (M) Sdn. Bhd. (SEM) has been in Malaysia for six years and is the youngest among Sharp's companies in Malaysia. As an R&D centre, SEM has enabled our staff to undertake research, design, development and testing of new products, besides serving as a global procurement centre and service and parts distributor.
Malaysia's attractive workforce made it possible for the integration of our R&D activities in this country. 250 out of Sharp's 650 Malaysian engineers work at SEM. Our local engineers are very creative and are actively involved in the design and development of our products.
Malaysia is Sharp's largest offshore export production base in the world. We find Malaysia an ideal place for investment for many reasons. Firstly, the government is very supportive of companies investing in Malaysia - our problems are solved quickly and assistance is readily available. SEM's application for operational headquarters status was made convenient and without hassle. Our achievement of ISO 14001 certification in December 1999 is another result of the support of the local government.
Another benefit to us is that Malaysia has become a production site for many companies involved in the electrical and electronics industry. Numerous manufacturers of finished products, parts and raw materials co-exist here, and because of this competitive environment, Malaysia is able to offer high quality products at competitive prices.