By David Shepardson
WASHINGTON (Reuters) – Amazon.com Inc’s cloud services division said Friday it plans to invest another $35 billion by 2040 to expand data centers in Virginia.
Amazon Web Services (AWS) said the new investment will create 1,000 jobs. Virginia Republican Governor Glenn Youngkin said AWS will establish multiple data center campuses across Virginia.
In 2021, AWS said from 2011 to 2020 it had invested $35 billion in data centers located in northern Virginia and had 3,500 full time employees at its data centers in the state.
Pending approval by state lawmakers, Virginia is developing a new “Mega Data Center Incentive Program,” which would allow the company to receive up to a 15-year extension of Data Center Sales and Use tax exemptions on equipment and software.
AWS also will be eligible to receive a state grant of up to $140 million “for site and infrastructure improvements, workforce development, and other project-related costs.”
Amazon in 2018 after a long contest announced northern Virginia would be home to its second headquarters known as “HQ2” and eventually employ more than 25,000 employees. As of April, Amazon said its headcount assigned to the site was around 5,000.
Youngkin has faced some criticism for withdrawing from a competition to attract a new Ford Motor battery plant expected to be built with China’s Contemporary Amperex Technology Co Ltd CATL.
A spokesperson for Youngkin said earlier this week “while Ford is an iconic American company, it became clear that this proposal would serve as a front for the Chinese Communist party, which could comprise our economic security and Virginians’ personal privacy.”
Ford declined to comment on Youngkin’s comments or the status of the planned facility or its talks with CATL, but in July said it plans to localize 40 GWh of battery capacity in North America starting in 2026.
(Reporting by David Shepardson and Akash Sriram in Bengaluru; Editing by Maju Samuel and Aurora Ellis)