Thailand Aims to Become Electric Vehicle Hub in 5 Years

PM Prayut Chan-o-cha drives an electric-powered tuktuk in Sukhotai province on Dec. 27, 2017.

BANGKOK (Xinhua) — The Thai government will roll out strategic plans to turn the country into an electric vehicle (EV) hub in five years under several promotional measures, said Deputy Prime Minister Somkid Jatusripitak on Wednesday.

Somkid announced the policy after chairing a meeting of the National Electric Vehicle Policy Committee.

The committee is currently working out strategies to become hub for electric vehicles including electric motorcycles, said Somkid.

“The national strategies focus on the environment, solutions to air pollution and the transition of the Thai automotive industry to electric vehicles,” said Somkid. “Fairness is guaranteed for existing car makers in Thailand.”

Meanwhile, Somkid has instructed the Board of Investment (BOI) to find more promotional privileges for investment in the production of electric vehicle parts including batteries and support the import of cheap batteries.

Such measures would add to corporate income tax exemption for eight to 10 years, Somkid said.

The deputy prime minister said that Thailand is also pushing and encouraging state enterprises to use electric vehicles including passenger buses.

Thai energy conglomerate including PTT Plc and the Electricity Generating Authority of Thailand will join forces to open charging stations, Somkid said.