Thailand’s Parts makers call for EV roadmap

Auto parts manufacturers are calling on the government to delay its ambitious plans to manufacture electric vehicles (EVs), saying the policy would have a huge impact on the country’s automotive industry.

Achana Limpaitoon, president of the Thai Auto Parts Manufacturers Association (Tapma), said the association has no objections to this policy, but the government has yet to come up with a clear-cut roadmap…

About 800 tier-1 parts companies, plus 1,700 tier-2 and tier-3 firms are now engaged in producing car parts, supplying 18 carmakers in Thailand that produce 2.85 million vehicles a year.

“The government is now speeding up its EV policy while Tapma is afraid that all the tier-2 and tier-3 makers would be wiped out, as EVs run on only 18 parts, while ICE-based vehicles need over 2,000 parts,”.

Mrs Achana said this would affect not only parts manufacturers but also 700,000 workers in the auto parts industry.

Mrs Achana said the government needs to re-evaluate locally made conventional models like pickup trucks and eco-cars, which Thailand has promoted for many decades, as well as their future market positioning once the EV models are rolled out.

Thailand was the first country in the region to introduce an eco-car programme, attracting investment totalling 28.8 billion baht when the first phase began in 2007. Mitsubishi, Honda, Toyota, Nissan and Suzuki participated in the first phase, with combined annual capacity of 585,000 vehicles. Makers of eco-cars are required to roll out their new automobiles by 2019.

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