Thailand: Chinese factory applications to rise

  • Investment applications from Chinese manufacturers looking to Thailand as a production base to avoid US tariffs are expected to surge by 30% in 2019 to THB71.5bn.
  • Duangjai Asawachintachit, secretary-general of the Board of Investment (BoI), said the prolonged trade war between China and the US has prompted Chinese manufacturers to look at relocating to Asean.
  • The surge in Chinese investment is expected to continue until 2020, she said.
  • According to a BoI report, investment applications from Chinese projects in Jan-Sep 19 amounted to THB45bn, up 100% y/y, mainly from the rubber industry and tyre manufacturing.
  • Ms Duangjai said a recent visit by an economic team headed by Deputy Prime Minister Somkid Jatusripitak helped persuade Chinese companies to move their production base to Thailand, with some deciding to expand output here.
  • “Most Chinese investors who met Mr Somkid and the BoI said a key reason to move their production base to Thailand is the continuity of the government’s infrastructure development policy, improvements in ease of doing business and Thai workers’ skills,” she said.
  • Ms Duangjai said Huawei, China’s leading global provider of information and communications technology (ICT) infrastructure and smart devices, submitted applications on 24 Oct 19 to the BoI to establish Huawei Academy in the Eastern Economic Corridor (EEC).

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