lobal investors in a variety of high-tech industry sectors built their most state-of-the-art facilities at Kulim Hi-Tech Park (KHTP) when it opened in 1996. Several of them are now completing construction on their latest facilities in the "Science City of the Future" as KHTP is known, including Fuji Electric (Malaysia) Sdn Bhd and Infineon Technologies (Kulim) Sdn Bhd.
Biotechnology companies are among the advanced technology enterprises targeted by KHTP for project development in the new, 406-acre Industrial Zone Phase 4. Twelve industrial lots of 20 to 30 acres each are available as of October 2014; the remainder is to be occupied by utilities and green space.
The latter is no small point - generous allotments of green space are central to KHTP's commitment to developing a sustainable business environment. In fact, 40 percent of development land must be set aside as green space. The park's industrial zone, developed in two phases, is 1,176 acres.
But KHTP is more than an industrial park. In addition to an Administrative Centre, it features several commercial amenities, most notably its 140,000-sq.-ft. Business Centre in the heart of the park with exhibition space, telecommunications services, a cafeteria, office space and other features. The KHTP Techno Centre houses technology facilities and laboratories in one wing and incubator space for fledgling companies in another. The KHTP IT Centre is a one-stop resource with network security and operating centers, interactive and multimedia labs, PC and other computer training labs and other IT-related amenities.
Park employees electing to live near work have three residential options onsite: Kulim Perdana - a mixed housing development, Kulim Heights - a mixture of bungalow lots and apartments, and Kulim Techno-City - a mixed residential development consisting of houses and commercial properties. Workers can even spend their holiday at the park, if they so choose. Visiting executives and potential investors in Kulim Hi-Tech Park, in any case, will appreciate the proximity of Kulim Golf & Country Resort, a full-service golf resort featuring a 27-hole professional golf course and practice range and full resort facilities and conference and meeting space.
A 'HIT' Location
Panasonic Energy (Malaysia) Sdn Bhd came to Kulim Hi-Tech Park in December 2011 and started full-scale solar module manufacturing production in August 2013. Managing Director Dr. Eiji Maruyama cites three reasons KHTP, in Kedah east of Penang, was chosen over other locations: "availability of excellent, local, talented people; stable and cheap infrastructure; and easy access to the port and Penang International Airport."
The factory manufactures Panasonic original HIT™ (Heterojunction with Intrinsic Thin-layer) solar modules, and its annual production capacity is 300 MW. The Panasonic HIT™ solar modules offer the world's top-class solar cell conversion efficiency of 22 percent. This new manufacturing facility will help Panasonic meet robust solar demand while further enhancing cost competitiveness.
Dr. Maruyama says Panasonic is fast approaching its 100th anniversary, which will be in 2018, and the KHTP plant will play a key role in the company's future. "HIT™ solar modules are the key, advanced-energy solution for generating, storing and wisely using energy," he states. "Through our business, we hope to contribute to solving energy-shortage and environmental problems in the world."