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Old Posted Jul 12, 2022, 12:54 PM
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AT&S Kulim plant likely to start ops in 2024
By Azanis Shahila Aman - July 11, 2022 @ 11:43am



AT&S Malaysia managing director Vittorio Villari said the company completed the piling work in April, and the overall construction progress of the facility had now reached 12 per cent from its commencement in November 2021. NSTP/DANIAL SAAD
Quote:
KUALA LUMPUR: The construction of the Austria Technologie & Systemtechnik AG (AT&S) plant facility in Kulim Hi-Tech Park is on track despite challenges posed by rising raw material costs and the recent minimum wage hike.

AT&S Malaysia managing director Vittorio Villari said the company completed the piling work in April, and the overall construction progress of the facility had now reached 12 per cent from its commencement in November 2021.

Villari said the increasing price of building materials posed a minimal impact on the company.

"Similarly, with the minimum wage increase announced by the government starting last May, the effect is insignificant.

"We are confident that the construction of this factory will be completed on schedule, and we expect to start production of products as early as 2024," he told The New Straits Times.

AT&S has chosen Kulim Hi-Tech Park in Kedah for its first production site in Southeast Asia.

The Austrian firm, which has a presence in Nanjangud, India; Chongqing and Shanghai in China; and Ansan, South Korea, is building a new modern facility in Kulim with an investment of RM8.5 billion under Phase 1 of the project.

Meanwhile, Villari said the Malaysian training campus, which is also part of the overall project in Kulim Hi-Tech Park, will create approximately 6,000 jobs after completion.

"AT&S Malaysia is now actively hiring engineers, production and administrative staff, and so far has employed more than 400 employees. This is higher than our initial target of 300 employees for the first half of this year.

"Most technical employees will be seconded to AT&S Chongqing for on-job training and then carry out technology transfer to the Malaysian campus," he said.

AT&S is one of the world's leading manufacturers of the high-end printed circuit board (PCB) and integrated circuit (IC) substrates, serving industries such as consumer electronics, computers, communication, semiconductors, automotive, aviation, industrial, and medical.

IC substrates provide connections between silicon dies and PCBs and are used for cloud edge computing, data centres, server farms, and consumer devices.

Villari said AT&S plans to carry out extensive research and development (R&D) activities at the new site, which involve investigating cooperation and partnerships with leading universities in Malaysia.

He said that the company is looking to establish an integrated circuit (IC) substrate institute in Malaysia, which it believes will be the first of its kind globally.

"These partnerships will not only help the company to discover new paths for the microelectronics industry but also make an important contribution to the development of the microelectronics industry in Malaysia," he said.

According to Villari, the company is scouting for the right university and needs to identify several potential universities for this project.

"We expect to end the discussion within this year. It will be one of those already established universities involved in the microelectronics industry because we don't have the time and cannot afford to build it up from scratch," he added.
https://www.nst.com.my/business/2022...start-ops-2024
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