Malaysia, Indonesia and Thailand are on track to develop more robust data centers, as local governments roll out favorable policies in an effort to promote digital transformation across industries. And the initiatives are being carried out through strategic partnerships with both foreign and local vendors, along with tax incentive offers, according to a report by Frost & Sullivan.
One example is the joint effort between Singapore’s Keppel Data Centres Holding (KDCH) and Alpha Data Centre Fund (Alpha DC Fund) to develop a data center in the State of Johor, Malaysia.
The data center will be situated within an industrial park, which has been earmarked to be a “data and research hub” for the state, according to a company press release. It will sit on approximately 261,000 square feet of land and the construction is scheduled to be completed in 2020.
It is suspected that the data center will be used by Microsoft to operate its Azure Cloud, according to London-based media outlet Data Centre Dynamics (DCD). Records with Singapore Exchange shows the company using the new data center will be one of the top three global cloud operators.
Since Amazon Web Service (AWS) and Google have already made substantial investments in Singapore to set up multiple data centers, while Alibaba Cloud has established presence in Kuala Lumpur, the data center client in Malaysia is probably Microsoft, DCD says.
Major cloud service providers and technology companies are expanding rapidly, “to rationalise their ageing data centre infrastructure, including moving many workload requirements to the cloud,” said Wong Wai Meng, CEO of Keppel Data Centres, regarding the Malaysian data center under development.
Taking off on Emerging Technologies
Lim Guan Eng, the Finance Minister of Malaysia, recently announced the 2019 Malaysia National Budget, which marks “an important incremental step in achieving Malaysia’s vision to become a fully connected digital economy,” according to research institute IDC.
The budget focuses on the Industry 4.0 blueprint, which aims to turn Malaysia into a prime destination for high-tech industries. AI, robotics, 3D printing and IoT are among the focus areas of the digital transformation initiative.
Last month Malaysian Technology Development Corporation launched the Centre of 9 Pillars initiative, which aims to develop big data analytics, autonomous robots, simulation & augmented reality, horizontal & vertical integration, IoT, cybersecurity, cloud, additive manufacturing and supply chain related solutions.
Malaysia’s digital economy is in the early stages of creating an infrastructure with key core technologies – cloud, big data/analytics, AI, mobility, social business, robotics, IoT and 3D printing – for better public services and an economic boost, IDC says.
The size of the big data/analytics investment in Malaysia will amount to US$670 million in 2019 led by the banking industry, IDC forecast.
Randy Roberts, IDC Asia Pacific IoT and Telco research director, said, “The transition to a digital economy is a key driver of growth and development because it can provide a boost to the country’s productivity across all sectors and it creates an attractive environment for new investments from outside Malaysia.”
Part of Smart City Initiative
In some Southeast Asian countries, governments are undertaking smart city projects as part of their digital transformation initiatives.
Data center service providers are, therefore, adopting innovative solutions such as data center infrastructure management, data center modernization and edge or modular data centers to optimize operational workloads and enhance service delivery by limiting latency related issues, said Frost & Sullivan.