Thailand becomes regional leader in electric vehicles (EV), from luxury cars to tuk-tuks

The German luxury car manufacturer has not only chosen Thailand as its first location in South East Asia to manufacture the ground-breaking EQS, but also selected the Kingdom as one of only seven sites worldwide to produce the high-performance lithium-ion batteries capable of powering the vehicle for over 700 kilometers on a single charge, according to the article. .

“It shows how much Thailand is for us”, the article quoted Roland Folger, president and CEO of the Thai business of Mercedes-Benz, as said in an interview. “The EQS is the absolute highlight of our full battery vehicles – the very best in technology. In Thailandwe have partners that we know can deliver. »

The emergence of Thailand, the 10th largest automaker in the world in 2021, as an electric vehicle hub has been accelerated by highly supportive government policies that comprehensively incentivize both investors in the electric vehicle industry supply chain and car buyers, according to the article. The BOI offers 3 to 11 years of tax exemptions for the production of electric vehicles of all types, including BEV platforms. The BOI also provides investment incentives for EV-related infrastructure, especially charging stations, to accelerate the growth of the domestic EV market.

Investors seem to be taking notice. During the first quarter of 2022, investment pledges in the automotive and spare parts sector more than quadrupled compared to the previous year to reach the equivalent of $1.2 billionthe BOI data shows it.

Automotive giants, including Toyota Motor Corp of Japanas well as Great Wall Motor and SAIC Motor of China also signed a government incentive plan to promote the sales and production of electric vehicles in Thailandunder which the government offers subsidies ranging between $2,000 and $4,400 per vehicle depending on model and battery capacity.

Thailand, South East Asia second-largest economy with a population of 70 million, is also attracting heavy-duty newcomers determined to cash in on the electric vehicle revolution. Foxconn Technology Group, the world’s largest contract electronics company, best known as the maker of Apple iPhones, has chosen Thailand as one of its first two sites in the world to build electric vehicles.

Foxconn has partnered with Thailand state-owned oil and gas giant, PTT – one of the world’s largest energy companies – to form a joint venture, HORIZON PLUS, which plans to invest between $1 and $2 billion to build finished cars for other manufacturers using a modular platform and software developed by Foxconn. With production set to start in 2024, the partners plan to manufacture between 150,000 and 200,000 vehicles per year by 2030 in Thailand Eastern High-Tech Economic Corridor.

Local Thai entrepreneurs are already building electric vehicles and developing the infrastructure to power them. Energy Absolute, a listed Thai company with a market value of $10 billionsells electric buses and boats, has an electric car ready to be launched, and builds what is to date the largest network of charging stations in the country.

Other local businesses, including startup MuvMi and longtime water transport operator Chao Phraya Express Boat Co., are replacing the country’s iconic but previously highly polluting “tuk-tuk” auto rickshaws and diesel-powered fast river boats by emission-free electric versions. .

The rate of change is such that the Thai government estimates that by 2030 – in just eight years – 30% of all cars made in Thailand will be electric. That would mean 750,000 of the 2.5 million it is expected to produce for local and international markets that year. Of those 750,000, half will be BEVs, according to the article.

Thailand sets equally aggressive targets for the infrastructure needed to support its zero emissions ambitions. The government estimates that some 900 public fast chargers have already sprung up across the country.

This figure is expected to increase to 4,400 public fast chargers by 2025, 12,000 by 2030 and 36,500 by 2035.

Today, PTT, a Fortune 500 company majority-owned by Thailand The Ministry of Finance and once synonymous only with oil and gas, is not only developing clean-energy cars with Foxconn, but is also making major investments in battery research and development, electric vehicle charging stations and a platform. – form of rental of electric cars. “We believe that every step we take is more beneficial to the world and to Thai society,” said the article quoting Dr. Buranin Rattanasombat, PTT’s Senior Executive Vice President for Innovation and New Ventures. “Our cooperation with Foxconn will be an important driving force in the development of the electric vehicle value chain in Thailand.”

Elliot Zhangpresident of Great Wall Motors’ (GWM) ASEAN business, says the region is one of the world’s most important markets for China largest SUV manufacturer. Hence Great Wall’s decision in 2020 to acquire an automobile production plant in Thailand formerly owned by General Motors.

Thailand has superior geographical advantages, a complete industrial supply chain and a sufficient reserve of talented personnel,” the article quoted Zhang as saying. The locally produced Haval H6 hybrid SUV and the ORA Good Cat BEV model, originally imported from Chinasuccessfully debuted in Thailand Last year. “We are convinced that all these assets will allow our strategy to build Thailand as GWM’s R&D and manufacturing center in the ASEAN region.”

To read the full article on the BOI website, please follow this link:
On the inside Thailand EV revolution From luxury cars to tuk-tuks, an electric era is dawning

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SOURCE Board of Investment of Thailand (BOI)

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