Microsoft’s AI investment in Malaysia poised to drive healthcare innovation

Satya Nadella announces Microsoft's investment in Malaysia

In a landmark move, Microsoft unveiled plans to inject US$2.2 billion into Malaysia over the next four years, marking its largest single investment in the country since its inception 32 years ago.

The tech giant’s ambitious investment encompasses cloud and AI infrastructure development, creating AI skilling opportunities for an additional 200,000 people in Malaysia, strengthening its partnership with the Government of Malaysia, and supporting the growth of Malaysia’s developer community. The infusion of funds aims to meet the escalating demand for cloud computing services and capitalise on the transformative potential of AI, with Malaysia poised to capture a substantial share of Southeast Asia’s AI-driven economic growth.

Microsoft’s investment builds upon its Bersama Malaysia initiative, introduced in April 2021, which laid the groundwork for establishing the company’s first data centre region in Malaysia. The company will continue to partner with the Government of Malaysia to enhance the nation’s digital ecosystem through several initiatives. These include establishing a national AI Centre of Excellence in collaboration with agencies in Malaysia’s Ministry of Digital to drive AI adoption across key industries, while ensuring AI governance and regulatory compliance.

Microsoft will continue to help foster the growth of Malaysia’s developer community through new initiatives such as AI Odyssey, expected to help 2,000 Malaysian developers become AI subject matter experts by learning new skills and earning Microsoft credentials. 

According to Microsoft, its investment demonstrates its commitment to developing Malaysia as a hub for cloud computing and related advanced technologies, including generative AI. Malaysian healthcare companies, such as ‘superapp’ Doctor2U, are leveraging Microsoft’s generative AI to enhance their productivity and drive innovation.

Doctor2U employs GitHub Copilot to expedite development, achieving tasks that previously consumed two hours in just 30 minutes. In addition, the implementation of Azure AI Search has sped up its record retrieval process, reducing the time it takes to return results from a multi-million patient data set from one minute to one second.  

Microsoft also announced a broader endeavour to provide AI skilling opportunities for 2.5 million individuals across ASEAN member states by 2025.

Announcing the investment, Satya Nadella, Chairman and CEO of Microsoft, emphasised the company’s commitment to propelling Malaysia’s AI transformation for the benefit of all, underscoring the significance of digital infrastructure and skilling initiatives in catalysing inclusive economic growth and innovation across the nation.

Andrea Della Mattea, President of Microsoft ASEAN, meanwhile highlighted the strategic alignment between Microsoft’s investments and Malaysia’s National AI Framework, envisioning a digitally empowered future marked by sustainable development and societal wellbeing. YB Senator Tengku Datuk Seri Utama Zafrul Abdul Aziz, Malaysia’s Minister of Investment, Trade & Industry, hailed Microsoft’s long-standing partnership with Malaysia, affirming the country’s status as a burgeoning tech investment hub.

Last month, Malaysia’s Ministry of Science, Technology, and Innovation (MOSTI) launched an AI Sandbox 2024 pilot programme aiming to produce more than 13,000 new AI professionals and 900 AI startups by 2026.

Dr. Kavintheran Thambiratnam avatar

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *