SPEECH BY CHIEF MINISTER OF PENANG
AT THE OFFICIAL OPENING OF SIEMENS DIGITAL INDUSTRIES SOFTWARE (SPLM) OFFICE AND LAUNCH OF TECHNICAL COMPETENCY HUB
28 June 2019
Siemens Industry Software, Bayan Lepas
It gives me a great pleasure to be present today to witness the official opening ceremony of Siemens Digital Industries Software office, also known as SPLM, and the launching of its first Technical Competency Hub in Malaysia.
Started its operation in Penang 9 years ago, I am delighted that Siemens has chosen to deepen its roots in the State. I was told by the company that Penang is chosen for expansion due to the availability of talents that is equipped with both technical and language skills and notably our economic and political stability. With the current 70 highly skilled staffs on a 1,500 square meter office in Penang, SPLM commits to double its office space and close to triple its number of staffs over the next two years. I am indeed excited and look forward to this expansion.
Thanks to our 50 years of industrial experience, Penang is no doubt one of the key manufacturing hubs in the region and the State has been attracting high-quality investments over the past decades. Penang houses about 350 MNCs and we have a strong base of more than 3,000 manufacturing-related SMEs in the state, forming a robust ecosystem that becomes our competitive edge.
The numbers speak for themselves, in the first quarter of 2019, Penang attracted RM8.5 billion of manufacturing FDI and it is estimated to create 10 thousand new jobs to the State. Notably, the FDI was mainly led by the high-value E&E industry and Penang contributed 42% of Malaysia’s total FDI during the period.
Not only that, Penang’s capability is recognised by the international organizations as the State has been chosen to host The World Congress on Information Technology, or known as WCIT, in September next year. Known as the Olympics of the world’s information technology industry, WCIT 2020 Malaysia sets Penang as the gateway to Southeast Asia for the world.
We expect this 4-day event to attract the participation of 4,000 delegates, who include industry captains, government leaders and academicians, from more than 80 countries. Through this event, we are targeting to bring in RM10 billion investment to Malaysia.
Ladies and gentlemen,
Despite this great achievement, the State simply cannot afford to rest on its laurels and be complacent. Due to the emergence of disruptive technologies, almost every industry is undergoing a radical transformation. In Penang, modernizing the manufacturing industry is particularly important. It will help us to remain competitive through higher productivity gains and create additional revenue streams through new products and quality improvements. In fact, according to a study by the World Economic Forum, Malaysia is among the 25 countries that are well positioned to benefit from Fourth Industrial Revolution technologies.
The MNCs in Penang have introduced Fourth Industrial Revolution technologies, such as the industrial internet of things to a certain extent. This no doubt will drive innovation-led growth in industries and to develop a more robust than ever ecosystem, allowing the State to move towards a knowledge-intensive and high value-based manufacturing. Through the State’s relentless effort in creating awareness on the importance of digitalisation, I am hopeful that the local SMEs will proactively move in tandem with MNCs in adopting the Industry 4.0 elements in their operations.
Ladies and gentlemen,
The State will continue to engage the industry for inputs and to ensure our infrastructure is up to standard in supporting our goals. The State government has recently announced that we are targeting to be the first state in Malaysia to become a gigabit city that offers high-speed internet and a more reliable broadband connection to businesses and residents. The State has already started to work with relevant stakeholders including MCMC and the seven biggest telco providers on this matter.
My Penang2030 vision is not merely a State-sponsored initiative. I hope that both public and private sectors will work hand-in-hand in achieving the vision of upgrading the economy through the emphasis on advanced readiness of manufacturing industries for the digital age.