JOHOR BARU: Johor is set to become a major regional player in the high technology field with the construction of a Microsoft data centre in the state.
Mentri Besar Datuk Hasni Mohammad said the global tech giant was currently developing its data centre on a piece of land in Kulai.
The Benut assemblyman pointed out that construction of the centre had reached 40% and once completed, it would create new employment opportunities for locals.
“Microsoft investment in Johor will pave the way for the state to attract major technology-based companies.
“It will play a huge role in helping the state government’s digitisation programme and benefit the people by providing faster Internet connectivity and help simplify day-to-day activities, ” he said in his speech at the launch of the Johor Perangi Denggi campaign at Dewan Taman Mawar here.
Hasni said the state also received inquiries from a Japanese-based data centre interested in investing in Johor.
“I have received many calls urging the state government to attract more investment into the state to reduce the unemployment rate.
“To date, about 39,000 Johoreans have lost their jobs.
“I have requested all state-owned training centres to provide more re-skill and up-skill programmes to help those unemployed find jobs.
“Also, when these technology companies begin operations here, we could provide them with skilled manpower, ” he said.
It is learnt that US-based Microsoft Corp will invest between RM5bil and RM6bil to set up its data centre in Sedenak near Kulai.
The investment was first mentioned in 2014.
Earlier this month, Prime Minister Tan Sri Muhyiddin Yassin said global tech companies had shown interest in making Malaysia a regional hub for information technology.
He said he had talks with representatives of major tech firms — Microsoft, Amazon and Google — who wanted to help Malaysia move forward in the field of information technology.