Four major Japanese automakers will invest 150 billion baht (about RM20 billion) in electric vehicle (EV) production in Thailand over the next five years. This was revealed by Chai Watcharong a spokesperson for the country’s prime minister’s office.

In an official statement, Chai said that Thailand prime minister Settha Thavisin had held discussions with seven automakers in Japan during the Commemorative Summit for the 50th Year of ASEAN-Japan Friendship and Cooperation in Tokyo from December 14-18, 2023.

From these discussions, Thailand’s Boad of Investment (BOI) said four Japanese automakers have pledge to expand EV production in the country. The four include Toyota, which will invest 50 billion baht (about RM6.7 billion), Honda with 50 billion baht (about RM6.7 billion), Isuzu with 30 billion baht (about RM4 billion) and Mitsubishi with 20 billion baht (about RM2.7 billion). It added that EV production will also cover pick-up trucks in the next two to three years.

Additionally, Chai said seven Japanese automakers have also committed to making Thailand their main production base in the ASEAN region. The country has already set a target to produce 750,000 EVS out of a total of 2.5 million vehicles made annually by 2030, and these investments will help achieve the goal.

Toyota, Honda, Isuzu, Mitsubishi to invest RM20 billion in Thailand for EV production, including pick-up trucks

“The prime minister emphasised that automobile manufacturers from Japan play an important role in developing and promoting the electric vehicle industry in Thailand to become a leader in electric vehicle production in the ASEAN region,” said Chai.

“Thailand is therefore ready to support and cooperate with Japanese car manufacturers who want to expand their investment further in Thailand to enhance economic opportunities in the electric vehicle industry of both countries as well as navigate through this critical transition period to success and mutual benefits of both countries,” he added.

Evidence of Thailand’s initiatives to grow its EV sector comes in the form of the e:N1, which makes Honda the first automaker to produce EVs in Thailand. Reports also indicate that Toyota will soon test a new electric pick-up truck in Thailand, while Isuzu said previously it will launch its own electric pick-up truck in 2025.

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