MIDA, MPC & Intel Malaysia’s Collaborative Artificial Intelligence for SMEs

Newly launched "Productivity Through Digitalisation – AI4S Programme Proof-of-Concept Projects Compilation" Booklet features 31 successfully completed pilot projects


As part of the  Artificial  Intelligence for  SMEs  (AI4S) Programme, the Malaysian Investment Development Authority (MIDA), Malaysia Productivity Corporation (MPC) and Intel Malaysia have collaborated to launch the “Productivity Through Digitalisation – AI4S Programme Proof-of-Concept Projects Compilation” booklet.

The launch was officiated by Datuk Hanafi Sakri, Senior Director of the Ministry of International Trade and Industry (MITI) in the presence of YAB Chow Kon Yeow, Chief Minister of Penang; Datuk Arham Abdul Rahman, Chief Executive Officer (CEO) of MIDA; Ajit Manocha, President and CEO of SEMI; and Dato’ Seri Wong Siew Hai, President of Malaysia Semiconductor Industry Association (MSIA) and Champion of Electrical & Electronics Productivity Nexus (EEPN). Also in attendance were AK Chong, Vice President of Manufacturing, Supply Chain and Operations at Intel Corporation and MD of Intel Malaysia; Dr Mohamad Norjayadi Tamam, Director of MPC and Sarojini Ganesan, Deputy Director of the Advanced Technology and R&D of MIDA.

Datuk Arham, CEO of MIDA said, “Companies that adopt and adapt Industry 4.0-related technologies such as AI can optimise productivity and grow in the face of rapid changes in technology cycles. Hence, MIDA is committed to building a resilient and sustainable Malaysian electrical and electronics (E&E) supply chain through the development and enhancement of our very own SMEs through this AI4S Programme. This perfectly aligns with our National Investment Aspirations (NIA) in encouraging the innovative transformation of our industries through proactive and guided measures. We are undoubtedly excited to witness the future success of our SMEs in the year to come through this programme.”

Last year, a total of 100 SME companies were selected to participate in the AI4S Programme, where each company was awarded an Artificial Intelligence (AI) kit. These SMEs underwent comprehensive technology enabling process and training to empower them to implement personalised pilot projects for their businesses to jump-start their AI technology adoption journey. Upon the completion of AI4S Programme that began in the first quarter of 2021, 31 successfully completed pilot projects have been selected to be featured in the AI4S Booklet.

The AI4S Booklet is a testament to the relevance of AI applications for business processes, including SME companies. Notably, the AI4S Programme saw 63% of the participants utilised the AI kit for detection for quality assurance (QA); approximately 13% integrate AI into their system for detection of traffic; another 10% of the participants utilised the AI kit for on-site monitoring; another 10% utilised the AI kit for detection for counting, where else the remaining 4% used the kit for entry control and recognition.

Dr Mohamad Norjayadi Tamam, Director of MPC, is confident that the Proof-of-Concept projects featured in this booklet can serve as lessons learned in charting the transformation of their own Industry 4.0 journey. As the operating partner for this AI4S programme, MPC is in-charge of the training and implementation delivery programme management for all the five (5) training batches of the 100 companies.

AK Chong, Managing Director of Intel Malaysia, remarked “Innovation in technology has never been more important to our present and our future. For our nation to advance its global competitiveness, businesses across all sectors need to embrace technology and innovate continuously. Through this partnership with MIDA and MPC, Intel is pleased to be able to equip SMEs with skills in AI and help them create solutions for their businesses. We are confident that this experience will catalyse innovation and growth for many of the participants, and we look forward to seeing what they achieve next.”

MIDA is actively urging industry leaders and players to take the opportunity and leverage the numerous facilitations offered by the Government to embrace Industry 4.0. These include encouraging companies to undertake Readiness Assessment (RA) programme to assess their capabilities and readiness to adopt Industry 4.0 technology under the Industry4WRD initiative.

This augurs well with the Government’s push for the development of AI technology and ecosystem in Malaysia through relevant ministries and agencies in line with the National Science, Technology, and Innovation Policy (NSTIP) 2021-2030.

The policy is targeting to increase gross expenditure on R&D (GERD) per gross domestic product (GDP) to 3.5 per cent, with 50 per cent of the GERD to GDP to be contributed by experimental development. This is in addition to promoting the development and adoption of local technology.

Towards this goal, the National Science Council was formed and mandated to discuss various government efforts including technology roadmaps to popularise the field of science, technology and innovation (STI) as an enabler for socio-economic stabilisation of the country in line with the Twelfth Malaysia Plan (12MP).

For more information, interested stakeholders may contact the Advanced Technology and Research and Development Division of MIDA at www.mida.gov.my.