According to Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Tun Razak, Malaysia is looking at setting up an Apple research and development centre.
He spoke of the plans after his one-hour visit to Apple’s headquarters in Cupertino, California where he held discussions with the company’s chief operating officer Jeff Williams.
“We are looking at the opportunity of an Apple Research and Development Centre for the Asia-Pacific in Malaysia, to focus on innovative ways of using mobile technology to promote learning among children. Apart from that, to further expand the potential of young minds in Malaysia, we will also look at setting up an Apple Excellence Development Centre to identify, educate and produce local application developers,” he wrote in his blog on Thursday (18th February).
Earlier this week, Apple announced plans to establish a R&D centre in Hyderabad, India; the first of its kind outside the US. Word has it that Apple is investing USD 25 million in the new R&D centre, which could employ about 4,500 people.
This could mean that the company is finally expanding development outside of its headquarters in Cupertino, but it is unknown if they’d set up one in Malaysia so soon.
Najib went on to add, “The Centre will focus on identifying, educating and creating local application developers. Aside from that, we will also be exploring the possibility of establishing an Apple Application Development Excellence Centre that will focus on innovative ways of using mobile technology to stimulate learning in children. These local developers will design applications for the Apple Store that are suitable for education and the local market.”
In a separate report by NST Online, Najib has also asked the Apple to consider the possibility of setting up an Apple store in Malaysia. If that goes according to plan, it could be the second Apple store in Southeast Asia after the proposed outlet in Singapore, which is slated to open a little later this year.
As of now, the closest physical Apple Stores are located several hours away in Australia and Hong Kong.