Microsoft invests US$1.7 billion in Indonesia for AI, cloud services

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Microsoft revealed its plan to invest US$1.7 billion in Indonesia, with the intent of enhancing the nation’s cloud services and artificial intelligence (AI) capabilities. This includes the construction of data centres, according to the company’s chief executive, Satya Nadella, who announced it today, April 30, during his visit to the country.

Marking his first stop in a Southeast Asian tour, Satya’s visit to Jakarta underscores Microsoft’s commitment to promoting its generative AI technology in the region, with further trips to Malaysia and Thailand scheduled for later this week.

The tech giant’s US$1.7 billion investment will be channelled towards expanding its data centres and cloud computing capabilities in Indonesia. The aim, as Satya explained in the country’s capital, is to bring the latest and greatest AI infrastructure to Indonesia, positioning Microsoft as a leading player in AI infrastructure.

Satya met with Indonesia’s outgoing President Joko Widodo and his Cabinet ministers. The focus of the discussion revolved around potential collaborative efforts in AI research and talent development, as detailed by Communications Minister Budi Arie Setiadi.

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As part of its global push to support AI development, Microsoft has pledged to train 2.5 million people in Southeast Asia in AI usage by next year. The company’s commitment to this area of technology is further illustrated by its substantial investments in cloud and AI infrastructure in Japan, totalling US$2.9 billion, as well as its US$1.5 billion investment in UAE-based AI firm G42.

Satya’s visit to Jakarta follows hot on the heels of a similar trip by Apple Inc. CEO Tim Cook met with President Widodo a fortnight ago and expressed interest in establishing a manufacturing facility in Indonesia.

With its vast, technologically adept population, Indonesia represents a key target market for tech-related investments. This was emphasised last week when Microsoft exceeded Wall Street’s third-quarter revenue and profit estimates, with the success largely attributed to the widespread adoption of artificial intelligence across its cloud services, reported Bangkok Post.

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