CARY, N.C. … Infineon Technologies, the world’s sixth-largest semiconductor manufacturer, plans to expand its North Carolina operation by adding as many as 400 administrative jobs over the next five years.

North Carolina officials promised the company $9.5 million in tax breaks and other incentives to win the project over competing sites in Virginia, Georgia and Vermont, according to the state Department of Commerce.

Infineon, which was created from the semiconductor unit of German giant Siemens and continues to be based in Munich, will have to meet certain milestones to obtain the state funding, such as creating 110 of the jobs by the end of 2003 and maintaining the positions for at least 11 years.

The company already employs about 70 people in Research Triangle Park but has selected a site in the Weston Business Park in Cary for the expanded operation. Its deal with the state also requires that it invest at least $8 million in developing the site.

Some of the new positions could be transferred from Infineon’s U.S. headquarters in San Jose, Calif. Most of the people in Cary will be working in administrative functions like finance, human resources and logistics.

Infineon, which makes computer memory products and devices for phone switches and smart cards, has been hard hit like the rest of the chip industry in recent years. The company has cut some 5,000 jobs worldwide to trim expenses and now employs 30,000 people, including 2,700 in the United States.

Infineon Technologies: