Technology giant Intel this week confirmed that a new product testing and research mega-lab will begin operating in Costa Rica in mid-2015.
The new facilities initially will staff 80 workers, who the company already has begun hiring. At full capacity, the operation will employ 200, bringing the total number of Intel employees in Costa Rica to 1,600.
President Luis Guillermo Solís announced the opening of the new lab during a visit to the United States in June while traveling to court new investors.
At the time, Solís met in California with Intel CEO Brian Krzanich. The total investment in the new lab has not yet been disclosed.
That meeting followed Intel’s announcement in April that it would close its microprocessors assembly plant in Costa Rica, which meant the dismissal of 1,500 workers.
Layoffs have been gradually implemented and will be completed in December, but the company does not rule out hiring some of those workers back.
“We left the manufacturing world to enter an exciting world of engineering. At our mega-lab we will be in contact with every single product Intel manufactures, and we will take advantage of Costa Rican talent to achieve it,” Intel Costa Rica General Manager Vince Guglielmetti told the weekly El Financiero last month.
Intel has operated in Costa Rica since 1997. It was the largest exporter in the country, with over $2 billion in annual exports, a figure that represents 15 percent of total exported goods in the country.