by ANIS HAZIM / pic by TMR FILE
MALAYSIA remains an important hub in the semiconductor chip supply chain and this has attracted Austria Technologie & Systemtechnik AG (AT&S) to invest in a production plant in Kedah worth RM8.5 billion.
The construction of the facility at the Kulim Hi-Tech Park is scheduled to begin next month and the facility is targeted to commence operations in 2024.
It will produce high-end printed circuit boards (PCB) and integrated circuit substrates and would create 5,000 high-tech and high impact jobs.
AT&S communications and public relations director Gerald Reischl said Malaysia can benefit from its position as a technology centre and strengthen the role of the region as a high-tech manufacturing hub in Asia.
“Malaysia could become an important hub for the chip supply chain besides China. Not only will thousands of new jobs be created in the region, Malaysia will also make a name for itself as a hotspot for a completely new, first-of-its-kind technology segment,” Gerald told The Malaysian Reserve.
He said the AT&S facility in Kulim will produce the high demand ABF (Ajinomoto build-up film) substrates.
“The increasing complexity of high-end products leads to ongoing strong demand for ABF substrates which are especially needed in high-end computing (supercomputer), server, gaming and artificial intelligence applications. These will drive the demand for the substrate businesses,” said Gerald.
AT&S estimates its revenue will rise to €3 billion (RM14.8 billion) by 2025-2026 with the expansion plant.
“Our expansion in Kedah as well as in Chongqing, China, will make an important contribution to achieve our goal in becoming one of the world’s three largest suppliers of ABF substrates,” he added.
AT&S is currently ranked fifth in the world for ABF substrates supply and second for the HighTech-PCBs.
Meanwhile, AT&S is also looking to cooperate with leading universities in Malaysia.
“This is to contribute to the positive development of society and deepen the knowledge and know-how in the field of microelectronics and especially in substrate technologies,” said Gerald.
The focus will lie on cooperation in teaching and training in various aspects related to fabrication and research collaboration on high-end technology topics.