Speech by Chief Minister of Penang
At 2019 Special Certification Award Ceremony of Amcham-Usains HRDF Inbase Programme
8 March 2019 (Friday)
Dato’ Seri Wong Siew Hai, Chairman of MAEI, American Malaysian Chamber of Commerce,
Mr. Elanjelian Venugopal, Chief Executive of Human Resources Development Fund,
Y. Bhg. Tan Sri Datin Paduka Siti Sa’diah Sheikh Bakir, Chairman of USAINS,
Mr. Farid Wajidi, Managing Director, USAINS,
Principal officers and head of departments, USM,
Graduates of the INBASE program,
Ladies, and gentlemen,
Firstly, I would like to welcome you all to this special certificate awarding ceremony of AMCHAM-USAINS HRDF INBASE Programme year 2019. I would like to take this opportunity to congratulate all 192 graduates of the 2019 batch who have successfully completed the programme.
As we all are aware of, the American Malaysian Chamber of Commerce (AMCHAM), Human Resources Development Fund (HRDF), and USAINS have come together in a joint effort to enhance the skills of our graduates up a further level from Electronic and Electrical Engineering, or E&E, to Advanced Design and Development, or D&D.
In terms of talent development, the state government takes a serious approach in supporting and encouraging programmes such as INBASE programme as it acts as a catalyst to boost the E&E Human Capital in Malaysia, especially in Penang to rise up the value chain. Penang may be prominent with picturesque holiday destinations with its off-the-wall street art, world-class food destination, and sandy beaches but with what’s being offered through this collaboration, the INBASE programme aims to advance and to improve the skills of industrial engineering professionals and this will prepare Penang for the upcoming Fourth Industrial Revolution.
Riding on the IR4.0 wave, there is a need for Penang state to modernise its agriculture sector where areas such as crops production, animal husbandry as well as aquaculture can be benefitted from technology advancement in the agriculture sector. Penang consistently leads in attracting new investors and re-investments from existing investors. In 2017, Penang recorded the largest FDI inflow of MIDA approved manufacturing FDI among states in Malaysia, valued at RM8.5 billion. Penang is also the second top recipient of total manufacturing investment among states valued at RM10.8 billon. Domestic investment also grew steadily by 92% year-on-year to reach RM2.3 billion in 2017.
From January-September 2018, Penang recorded total approved manufacturing investments of RM3.8 billion, showing a steady continued inflow of investments into Penang, well within the range of the past five years.
Our reputation has always connected with a hub of start-ups every year. The brand of “Silicon Island” has been attached to Penang since Intel and Bosch set up operations in Bayan Lepas, an industrial park, in the 1970s. As for our “Silicon Island” itself, ever since the days where the giant tech companies arrived here, there are now more than 300 multinational corporations (MNCs) that have established their operations on the island and are now looking forward to making their mark on the global marketplace.
Thanks to the great amount of cultural diversification and entertainment places, Penang has been a smart alternative to the hustle and bustle of other busier states. These qualities have greatly enabled Penang to be highlighted as a tech county. Also, not forgetting with the rapidly growing Batu Kawan Industrial Park, all these are contributing towards the realization of our state in the near future to be regarded in South East Asia as the “Silicon Valley of the East”.
Following the label, the INBASE programme has been successful in assisting companies to evolve in Design and Development, as well as keeping our engineers to remain relevant and competitive in the engineering industry. With that, I would like to take this opportunity to congratulate HRDF, AMCHAM, USAINS for the success of their hard work and once again, to congratulate the 192 graduates for having successfully undergoing the programme and supporting the development of our island and country.
With today’s milestone, we have manpower of better quality to face the ever challenging and evolving needs of engineering in our country. This could only be possible with the mind set for continuous improvement and willingness to learn by the individuals involved. The future of our state depends on the people who are here today. I urge each and every one of you to have a mentality for continuous improvement and learning spirit for the nation’s growth and accomplishments.
Just like what Leonardo da Vinci said: “Learning is the only thing the mind never exhausts, never fears, and never regrets.”
Keep on learning, until you are where you think you should be.