Swiss firm to open new plant in Penang

GEORGE TOWN: A Swiss semiconductor company has chosen Penang to open its first manufacturing plant in Asia.

VAT Manufacturing Malaysia Sdn Bhd will be built on a 3.035ha in Batu Kawan and is expected to commence production by December this year.

VAT executive vice-president Quality and Procurement Andreas Scheibe said it was a big step for VAT to open its first branch in Asia.

“A lot of our customers in the United States have moved to Asia, so we decided to move as well to be able to better serve our customers,” said Andreas.

“After surveying several Asian countries, we chose Penang because it is the only one that meets our requirements,” he said.

VAT is the world's leading supplier of vacuum valves for state-of-the-art applications in the semiconductor industry, for manufacturing flat screens and solar panels, as well as for coating optical systems and tools.

Penang Chief Minister Lim Guan Eng said that he was delighted that VAT had chosen Penang over China, Japan, South Korea, Singapore, Taiwan, Thailand and Vietnam.

“We are proud that our human resources, suppliers in mechanical and electronic components, infrastructure and logistics support as well cost of living comply with the requirements of VAT,” he said.

Lim was speaking at the sale and purchase signing ceremony between VAT and Penang Development Corp at his office at Komtar yesterday.

He added that the new facility, with investments totalling US$25mil (RM75mil) was expected to generate 100 new jobs.

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