Apple set out plans to expand its engineering operation in Munich to include a facility focused on developing chips and software related to 5G and future wireless systems.

The creation of a European Silicon Design Centre in the German city, Apple noted, will add hundreds of new employees to its R&D operation in the region and comprise part of a €1 billion investment over three years to improve its facilities in the country.

Munich is already the US company’s largest engineering facility in Europe, with teams focused on power management technology, application processor SoCs, and analogue and mixed signal solutions used in its iPhones.

Its new unit will be housed in an already constructed 30,000 square-metre building with the company set to to start moving into the site in late 2022.

The company claimed its facility would become Europe’s “largest R&D site for mobile wireless semiconductors and software”.

Apple’s increased investment in its chip development facilities in Germany comes at a time when several European Union countries are actively trying to improve the region’s position in the semiconductor market to reduce dependency on imports from the US and Asia.