Hexagonal boron nitride (hBN) has emerged as an important material for various device applications and as a template for graphene electronics. Low-dimensional hBN is expected to possess rich physical properties, similar to graphene. The synthesis of wafer-scale semiconducting hBN epitaxial layers with high crystalline quality and electrical conductivity control has not been achieved but is highly desirable. Large area hBN epitaxial layers (up to 2 in. in diameter) were synthesized by metal organic chemical vapor deposition. P-type conductivity control was attained by in situ Mg doping. Compared to Mg-doped wurtzite AlN, which possesses a comparable energy band gap (∼6 eV), dramatic reductions in Mg acceptor energy level and P-type resistivity (by about six to seven orders of magnitude) have been realized in hBN epilayers. The ability of conductivity control and wafer-scale production of hBN opens up tremendous opportunities for emerging applications, ranging from revolutionizing p-layer approach in III-nitride deep ultraviolet optoelectronics to graphene electronics.