Intel CEO Paul Otellini on Friday took the occasion of U.S. President Barack Obama's tour of Intel's manufacturing facility in Hillsboro, Ore. to unveil Intel's plans to invest in another facility in Chandler, Ariz., as the White House announced that Otellini has been offered a position on President Obama's jobs advisory board.
President Obama visited Intel's Fab D1D at the chipmaker’s Ronler Acres campus a few hours after news came from Washington that Otellini will join Obama's new panel on jobs and competitiveness. The President last month established the panel headed by General Electric CEO Jeffrey Immelt in order to encourage hiring and growth.
Otellini described Intel's contribution to that end, including plans to build a $5 billion facility in Arizona and hire 4,000 new employees in the U.S. in 2011. Last October, Intel said it will spend $6 to 8 billion to upgrade its manufacturing plants in the U.S. over the next several years, and build the new development fab in Oregon. Intel estimated that these investments will add 6,000 to 8,000 additional U.S. construction jobs during the building phase and eventually add up to 1,000 high-skilled, high-wage manufacturing jobs.
"This new factory will play a central role in extending Intel’s unquestioned leadership in semiconductor manufacturing,” Otellini said. "The transistors and chips it will produce will be the most dynamic platform for innovation that our company has ever created. Together they will enable more capable computers, the most advanced consumer electronics and mobile devices, the brains inside the next generation of robotics, and thousands of other applications that have yet to be invented."
Intel said it offers world-class semiconductor manufacturing capabilities that give the U.S. a competitive advantage in the global market, and noted that over the last five years semiconductors accounted for more U.S. exports than any other industry.
Intel also said it's the largest private employer in Oregon, and that it aided Oregon's transition from a natural resource-based economy to a region replete with high-tech research and manufacturing centers. Intel also has manufacturing sites in Arizona, New Mexico, and other states.
Otellini has not always been a supporter of the Obama Administration's economic policies. In October, he criticized the administration's handling of the recovery, saying it had not resulted in either lower unemployment or increased confidence, and that it was time to rethink its policies.
However, Otellini in December participated in a meeting at the White House with Obama and other prominent CEOs, and in January he met with Obama at the White House again in a summit that included Chinese President Hu Jintao.