Samsung SDI Energy to invest RM7bil for a battery factory in Malaysia

Samsung SDI Co Ltd (South Korea) president and chief executive officer Yoon Ho Choi

SEREMBAN: Samsung SDI Energy Malaysia Sdn Bhd (SDIEM) will invest some RM7bil to build a state-of-the-art facility to manufacture batteries for electric vehicles (EV) near its existing plant at the Taman Tuanku Ja'afar Industrial Area near here.

The new facility, which is expected to begin operation in 2025, will see the production of some 800 million battery cells a year.

Samsung SDI Co Ltd (South Korea) president and chief executive officer Yoon Ho Choi said the new investment will also see the creation of some 1,300 jobs.

"Apart from batteries for EVs, we will also produce cells for other electronic devices and micro mobility innovations.

"Samsung will use its super gap technology to produce these batteries, which we will call PRiMX to give consumers the best experience," he said at the groundbreaking ceremony for the new facility yesterday.

Samsung started operations at the industrial area back in 1990 through Samsung Electron Devices Malaysia (SEDM), which was then involved in the manufacturing of cathode ray tubes for televisions.

In 1999, SEDM changed its name to Samsung SDI (Malaysia) Bhd and brought in new technology for the manufacturing of light emitting diode (LED) and liquid crystal display (LCD).

In 2011, SDIEM was established to manufacture lithium-ion batteries. Since the setting up of SDIEM, Samsung has invested some RM3.8bil in Malaysia as of May this year,.

Meanwhile, Prime Minister Datuk Seri Ismail Sabri Yaakob, in a pre-recorded message, congratulated Samsung, which he described as one of the world's biggest electronic manufacturers and a renowned brand, for the new EV investments.

"I was informed that this second phase will see the construction of seven new buildings and an additional 132kV electric substation that can produce EV battery cells.

"This effort by Samsung shows its commitment to fulfill the global market for EV usage and we are proud that you picked Malaysia to set up this new plant," he said, adding that the industry played an important role to Malaysia’s overall and comprehensive EV eco-system.

Ismal Sabri also commended SDIEM for developing a green-technology based industry which was also in line with the government’s target to achieve net-zero carbon emissions as early as 2050.

Negri Sembilan Mentri Besar Datuk Seri Aminuddin Harun in his speech said the new plant will not only allow SDIEM to be a pioneer for the EV battery industry in Malaysia but allow it to produce more complex products in the future.

"Samsung's presence in Negri Sembilan as one of the major investors for more than 30 years has brought many benefits to the locals and I am sure this new investment will have a positive impact in improving the living standards of the local community," he added.

Malaysian Investment Development Authority (MIDA) deputy chief executive officer Lim Bee Vian who was also present at the groundbreaking ceremony said Samsung's decision to expand its operations here was testament that it acknowledged Malaysia's local talent of highly-skilled engineers and technicians.

"Malaysia is no stranger to car production and we have several international automotive companies such as Volvo, BMW and Mercedes Benz, which have started assembling battery electric vehicles and plug-in hybrid EV locally in preparation for the development of vehicle electrification locally.

"The government has also established a National Electric Vehicle Task Force Committee led by the International Trade and Industry Ministry to spearhead the strategic development of the EV industry in Malaysia including the EV charging infrastructure,” she said.

In the 2022 Budget, Lim said the government had announced that it will provide incentives for EV assemblers, including EV ownership and charging infrastructure to support the development of the industry and encourage new green energy investments.

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