NCER initiatives continue to bolster Penang's socioeconomic growth in H2’22

PETALING JAYA: The Northern Corridor Implementation Authority’s (NCIA) collaboration with the Penang state government has secured a total investment of RM2.47 billion and created 4,308 new job opportunities as of May 2022.

NCIA is a regional development authority responsible for establishing directions, devising policies and strategies related to the socioeconomic development of the Northern Corridor Economic Region (NCER), encompassing the four northern states of Kedah, Penang, Perak and Perlis.

Penang Chief Minister Chow Kon Yeow said the state welcomes efforts by NCIA to enhance Penang’s attractiveness to investors beyond the electronics and electrical (E&E) and machinery and equipment (M&E) sectors particularly in the development of industry relevant, and high-skilled local talent.

“By encouraging innovation and strengthening the industry ecosystem in NCER, initiatives such as NCER Technology Innovation Centre (NTIC) will solidify Penang’s position as a technology and innovation hub for the region,” he said after chairing the Jawatankuasa Pemandu Negeri meeting today.

Penang recorded the highest exports among Malaysian states contributing 30.4% (RM143.5 million) of total exports as of January to April 2022, 25% increase from the same period last year. Malaysia’s total exports of manufactured goods had increased 19.5% compared to the same period of 2021 contributed by a robust expansion in the E&E sector, driven by strong demand for semiconductors.

In the third quarter this year, the state will launch NTIC, a “single campus” initiative that focuses on activities related to research, design, technology, innovation, and commercialisation. The hub will provide services and facilities for product innovation, linkages with local and international experts, local talent development, design and consultancy and a one-stop solution provider management system.

Meanwhile, NCIA CEO Mohamad Haris Kader Sultan said the NTEP and JomKerja@NCER are two industry-centric human capital programmes in the NCER Strategic Development Plan or SDP 2021-2025, that aims to ensure operation readiness post Covid-19 recovery and expansion plans by industry.

“The creation of these high-skilled job opportunities in high-value industries in Penang builds the foundation of NCIA’s efforts in the call to develop a prosperous, inclusive, sustainable Malaysia.

“The Advanced Technology Meister Programme, which is an intervention programme under NTIC aims to enhance the supply of skilled talent in automation, IR4.0 and advanced manufacturing technologies. The programme is targeted to kick-off in July 2022 and will subsidise course fees for local talent to be upskilled and reskilled to meet the demand of the E&E, M&E and medical devices sectors that are major economic drivers in NCER,” Mohamad Haris added.