Thailand PUSHES The Green Bandwagon
|PM Yingluck invites VW AG CEO, Christian Klingler, to expand in Thailand
image: the nation
It has been 5 years since the Board of Investment launched the eco-car policy in 2007. The participants of Phase 1 – Mitsubishi Mirage, Honda Brio Amaze, Toyota Yaris, Nissan March and Suzuki Swift – are enjoying the benefits of income tax exemption and zero import taxes on machinery. Together, these ‘eco’ projects created 12 000 jobs and drew foreign direct investment of THB 28.8 billion. Last year, 259 000 vehicles were produced although the combined annual capacity was 585 000 units. By the fifth year of each project, the manufacturers must hit production numbers of more than 100 000 units a year, as stipulated by the policy.
Last month, Phase 2 was launched despite concerns of oversupply. More carmakers have been called to get with the programme. In this next phase, eco-cars must meet more stringent criteria, including higher minimum investment value of THB6.5 million, production of at least 100 000 units by the fourth year, meet the new Euro5 standard of producing no more than 100 grammes of carbon dioxide per 100 kilometres and fuel efficiency of 4.3 liters for every 100 kilometres. Manufacturers will only receive 6 years of tax exemption, as compared to 8 years for Phase 1.