Speech by Chief Minister of Penang
At The Official Opening of Boston Scientific Penang
Batu Kawan Industrial Park, Penang
6 February 2018
Good morning. I am pleased to be present today at the official opening ceremony of Boston Scientific’s manufacturing plant in Asia, here in Penang. We are proud to join in congratulating Boston Scientific, a Fortune 500 company, one of the world’s leading medical device companies, and also among the world’s most innovative as named in the Top 100 Global Innovator by Clarivate Analytics.
I would also like to welcome Y.B Datuk Chua Tee Yong representing Y.B. Dato’ Sri Mustapha Mohamed, H.E. Ambassador of United States to Malaysia Kamala Shirin Lakhdhir and Mr Warren Wang, and also other guests who have travelled to Penang to attend today’s event, welcome to Penang, one of 16 must visit global destinations as listed by LA Times.
Penang – the right location for Boston Scientific
Boston Scientific’s investment and setting up of their plant in Penang is one that Malaysians look forward to. Last year, the Malaysian Investment Development Authority (MIDA), in their investment promotion, highlighted the investment by Boston Scientific in Penang with the headline: “In Perfect Health”. Penang is no stranger as a home to MNCs investment, especially FDIs from the United States. Indeed, among the earliest pioneer investors in Penang, which is more than 45 years ago, are US companies. Many such as Intel, are not only still in Penang but have grown stronger and bigger. From 2008-June 2017, US investors are the largest FDI contributors into Penang with about 25% of total manufacturing FDI in the State, valued at RM14.2 billion. Apart from Boston Scientific, recent significant investment and re-investment in Penang by US companies include luminaries such as Broadcom, Intel, Motorola, Western Digital, Keysight, Haemonetics, Jabil, HP and Flex.
I am pleased to also share that via the strong support by global and local MNCs, Penang is the second top recipient of approved manufacturing investment in the first nine months of 2017 valued at RM9.9 billion, which is way ahead of RM4.3 billion recorded for the whole of 2016. While Penang’s strong investment and economic vibrancy was built on the base as E&E and semiconductor hub, which a recent BBC-feature video report named Penang as a regional hardware manufacturing hub and Asia’s next Silicon Valley, Penang’s diversification into fast growing sectors such as medical devices and avionics have continued to strengthen Penang’s value proposition to investors. Penang is home to 1/3 of medical devices companies in Malaysia and Penang also accounted for 1/3 of the total value of medical devices export from Malaysia (RM17.8 billion in 2016). In 2017, the Association of Malaysian Medical Industries estimated an export growth of 12% valued at RM17.74 billion, and we expect Boston Scientific to contribute positively to Malaysia’s medical device export growth.
Boston Scientific’s new manufacturing plant in Asia
We are excited with Boston Scientific’s investment in this new plant, in our vibrant Batu Kawan Industrial Park. This 375,000 sq-ft facility we are in today will be the newest addition to Boston Scientific’s global network of high-tech manufacturing facilities, and is amongst one of their largest sites in their network. The company is expected to create more than 400 high value jobs in the medical device manufacturing devices in cardiology, endoscopy, and urology portfolios to cater to their global consumer needs. Other than their investment in this facility itself, the company will also be helping to further develop the local talents through knowledge and skills training and benefitting Malaysia in the global ecosystem network of high-tech companies.
In our efforts to partake in the Industrial 4.0 revolution, revolving around interaction of machines, cloud computing and Internet of Things, whilst we acknowledge that `Data is King, Talent is everything’. The State has invested RM75 million in setting up the Penang STEM Sdn Bhd. as the umbrella organization STEM education of science technology engineering Maths consisting of @CAT Penang (Accelerator for Creative, Analytics and Technology), Penang Skill Development Centre (PSDC), Penang Science Cluster (PSC), Karpal Singh Penang Learning Centre (KSPLC), Tech Dome Penang (TDP), and Penang Digital Library (PDL). It is a coherent and synergistic strategy to spearhead STEM, in line with our plan to establish Penang as the Centre of Excellence (CoE) for Science and Technology. Two weeks ago, the State has also announced a Industry 4.0 Seed Fund (I4) for tech Startups of USD 1 million for 2018 funded by the State Government.
Once again, I wish to congratulate Boston Scientific on their official opening of their new manufacturing plant in Asia, here in Penang, Malaysia. Penang is proud to have over 45 years of cumulative industrial intelligence, and host to many reputable American and global MNCs. We warmly welcome Boston Scientific to our family and look forward to their continued growth and success.