NCER's initiatives bolster Penang's socioeconomic growth

  • Exports of manufactured good increased by 19.5% to US$113bil
  • Collaboration with Penang State Govt secured US$559mil investments

NCER's initiatives bolster Penang's socioeconomic growth

The Northern Corridor Implementation Authority’s (NCIA) collaboration with the Penang state government to develop a conducive economic and talent ecosystem has secured a total investment of US$559 million (RM2.47 billion) and created 4,308 new job opportunities as of May 2022.

In a statement, the agency said Malaysia’s trade performance surpassed the US$226 billion (RM1 trillion mark) between January and May 2022. 

It said exports of manufactured goods recorded an increase of 19.5% to US$113 billion (RM499.51 billion) compared to the same period of 2021 contributed by a robust expansion in the electronics and electrical (E&E) sector and driven by strong demand for semiconductors. 

Additionally, Penang recorded the highest exports contributing 30.4% (US$32 million)(RM143.5 million) of total exports as of January to April 2022, which is a 25% increase from the same period last year, NCIA claimed.

Chow Kon Yeow, chief minister of Penang, said the state welcomes efforts by NCIA to further enhance Penang’s attractiveness to investors beyond the 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 the Nothern Corridor Economic Region (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.

According to NCIA, NTIC is a 'Single Campus' initiative that focuses on activities related to research, design, technology, innovation, and commercialisation that will be launched in third quarter this year.

It said 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.

Mohamad Haris Kader Sultan, chief executive of NCIA, said the upward trend in investments demonstrates the industry’s confidence in Penang’s ability to rebound and accelerate as the nation transitions into the endemic phase. 

“The NTEP and JomKerja@NCER are two industry-centric human capital programmes that are a strategic element 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,” he said.

JomKerja@NCER is part of NCIA’s fast-track strategic intervention programme implemented to support companies and businesses that are exploring to employ local human resources, investing, and expanding in NCER during this post pandemic period, NCIA said.

The participating companies are given human capital incentives and access to a varied talent pool comprising fresh graduates, youths, female personnel, and retrenched experienced workers to meet their operational needs, it added.

Since its inception in 2020, JomKerja@NCER has attracted over 4,000 participants with more than 80 companies participating in the programme in Penang.

NTEP, established in 2019, has created more than 2,000 job opportunities for fresh graduates with more than 50 participating companies in the island state.

Mohamad Haris said the Advanced Technology Meister Programme, which is an intervention programme under NTIC, aimed at enhancing 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, said.” he said.

The agency also claimed that more than 12% of participants from the empower NCER-Skills and Enterpreneurship have moved above the poverty line, with 8% transcending into the M40 & T20 income groups.

Additionally, NCIA said its citizen centric programmes will ensure the sustainability and growth of more than 1,300 micro enterprises and SMEs while supporting national aspirations in bridging regional disparities.


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