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GE15 Sarawak set to become semiconductor industry hub, says Premier
Posted on : 10 Nov 2022  Source of News: The Borneo Post
 

Abang Johari said the setting up of Sarawak Microelectronics Design (SMD) Semiconductors Sdn Bhd, a wholly owned state entity, would leverage Sarawak’s role in the semiconductor industry. — Photo by Roystein Emmor

KUCHING (Nov 10): Sarawak is poised to become a primary destination for the semiconductor industry and solutions provider for semiconductor technology.

In stating this, Sarawak Premier Datuk Patinggi Tan Sri Abang Johari Openg said the setting up of Sarawak Microelectronics Design (SMD) Semiconductors Sdn Bhd, a wholly owned state entity, would leverage Sarawak’s role in the semiconductor industry.

“As you know, we have a global player in Sarawak producing semiconductors through a company called X-Fab, and the company is going to expand their operation in Sarawak. The expansion is because of the good and successful marketing and also the demand of this analogue semiconductor produced in Sarawak.

“But then because of the changes of technology, the design of the chip is also proportionately changing due to the demand. So, Mr Syahriman (SMD chief executive officer), he is a Sarawakian who has a background in chip design and worked overseas.

“Now he is coming back to help us to get involved in this semiconductor industry,” he said to reporters when met after officiating the launching of SMD Semiconductor and the signing of the Framework Service Agreement (FSA) at Tegas Digital Village in Samajaya Industrial Park here yesterday.

Abang Johari said high demand from the consumer electronics and automotive industries during the height of the pandemic and geopolitical tension between Ukraine and Russia which caused global chip shortage had created opportunity for Sarawak to further develop and explore in the semiconductor and chip producing sector.

He said at the same time, the state is engaging with professionals with other chip designers including Sarawakian scholars currently working in Singapore as well as in the United States, to come back and help develop Sarawak’s chip design industry whilst supported by local universities.

“Because as you know, the chip design keeps on changing very fast and we have to keep track of that.

“This is the first step that we are looking into in participating in this semiconductor industry and it will create high-paying jobs for our locals if they are successful in their talent in creating new chip designs,” he added.

Earlier in his speech, Abang Johari said besides chip design, production, technology, knowledge transfer and talent development were highly viable and important for the development of the semiconductor industry.

To address the talent pipeline, he welcomed Melexis to work together with local technical institutions and universities to provide skills and knowledge for young graduates in Sarawak.

“I welcome Melexis to partner with technical institutions and universities in Sarawak to shape a new curriculum in semiconductors for undergraduates and postgraduates and industry certifications to enable our young graduates to acquire the necessary skills to be semiconductor professionals.

”The industry-academia platform can also promote industry-driven research collaboration in areas relevant to the semiconductor industry,” he added.