Penang working with Fed Govt to attract semiconductor investment - Chow - MIDA | Malaysian Investment Development Authority
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Penang working with Fed Govt to attract semiconductor investment – Chow

Penang working with Fed Govt to attract semiconductor investment – Chow

28 Apr 2024

The Penang State Government is working with the Federal Government to continue efforts in attracting investment in the semiconductor sector, including the integrated circuit (IC) design segment, said Chief Minister Chow Kon Yeow.

He said that Penang will also continue with various investments to complete the ecosystem and supply chain, as the semiconductor field is extensive and involves many sub-sectors, such as ICs.

“Moreover, the Federal Government is currently working on a Semiconductor Strategic Plan, and I understand there are plans to specialise states in specific sub-sectors, so we do not need to compete with other states but rather view this sector in the context of the nation.

“So, we need to see what the Semiconductor Strategic Plan, which is expected to be announced in May, proposes, and we will assess the roles assigned to Penang. I believe this state has the most complete ecosystem in Malaysia,“ he told reporters here today.

He was met after attending a charity luncheon for Hari Raya Aidilfitri organised by the Honorary Consulate Corps of Malaysia, which was also attended by Penang Yang Dipertua Negeri, Tun Ahmad Fuzi Abdul Razak and his wife Toh Puan Khadijah Mohd Noor, along with various consulate representatives in Penang.

Chow said this in response to former Finance Minister Lim Guan Eng’s suggestion that Penang should learn from Selangor’s success in establishing the Malaysia Semiconductor Accelerator and IC Design Park .

Therefore, Chow said that the state government will arrange a meeting with Lim, who is also a former Chief Minister of Penang, as well as with Invest Penang and the Penang Development Corporation (PDC) to hear proposals on an IC park in the state.

Yesterday, three new semiconductor companies, namely China Wafer Level CSP Co (WLCSP), Ningbo SJ Electronics Co (SJE), and Wuxi AMTE Inc (AMTE), expressed interest in investing in Penang, with a total investment of US$100 million (US$1=RM4.76).

Regarding the issue of water tariffs, Chow, who is also state Finance, Land Development, and Economy Committee chairman, said that tariff increases in the state depend on approval from the National Water Services Commission (SPAN), which has its own mechanism, including a tiered tariff system.

He explained that the first tier tariff has not been increased since 1992 in the state, while the second tier has not been adjusted since 2015, even though tariff rates are supposed to be reviewed or can be raised every three years as allowed by SPAN.

“Sometimes, Penang does not enforce (the three-year tariff increase) or it does not get approval, so when the water tariff does go up, it’s steep. If the review were done every three years, it wouldn’t be as drastic as now. Since it hasn’t gone up for a long time, we have to ‘catch up’,“ he said.

He was commenting on proposals from several state assemblymen suggesting solutions to the problem of increasing water tariffs, including raising the tariff in three phases over a year.

Source: Bernama