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  • Updated: June 10, 2024

ByteDance plans $2bn investment in Malaysia to develop AI infrastructure

ByteDance plans $2bn investment in Malaysia to develop AI in

ByteDance, the parent company of social media platform TikTok, is set to invest $2 billion in Malaysia to develop the country’s artificial intelligence (AI) infrastructure.

While confirming the investment, Malaysia's minister of trade, Tengku Zafrul stated that part of the arrangement was meeting the Vice President of TikTok, Helena Lersch while she was in the country. According to Zafrul, "the development of TikTok in Malaysia" was one of the topics of debate.

The investment comes soon after Google was reported to have said it would invest $2 billion in Malaysia, the majority of which would go toward building the nation's first data centre and cloud region.

Zafrul shared that ByteDance intends to make a sizable investment of about MYR10 billion to position Malaysia as the "AI hub" of Southeast Asia.

“This additional investment by ByteDance is expected to significantly contribute to Malaysia’s goal of expanding the digital economy to 22.6 per cent of the country’s Gross Domestic Product by 2025,” Zafrul said.

The news by ByteDance comes after other tech behemoths, including Microsoft and Google, made big investments in Malaysia in recent months.

Microsoft announced last month that it will invest $2.2 billion to grow cloud and AI services, while Google announced plans to invest $2 billion to build its first data centre and Google Cloud region in Malaysia.

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