The government in Thailand takes new initiative to be EV production center in ASEAN

The government in Thailand announced its plan to transform the country into an electric vehicle production hub in ASEAN by 2025. In more detail, the government showed its roadmap to promote EVs through state agencies and a target to produce 250,000 EVs, and 3,000 electric public buses by 2025. According to the government, an EV master plan aims to increase EV production to 30 percent of total annual car production in the country, which means about 750,000 units out of 2.5 million by 2030.

What is the situation about the car production in Thailand?

According to the data of The Federation of Thai Industries, the number of automobile production from 2016 to 2019 are 1,944,417, 1,988,823, 2,167,694 and 2,013,710, respectively. The number of exported cars during the same period are 1,188,515, 1,139,696, 1,140,640 and 1,054,103, respectively. This number means that the export / production ratio are 61.1%, 57.3%, 52.6% and 52.3%, respectively. Thailand relies on its export less than the past, but the export / production ratio is still above 50%. Therefore, which type of cars should be exported will be the key question and EVs would be a possible answer.

What is attractiveness of Electric Vehicle?

According to the survey of our group companies, some consumers in Japan told us that they felt the attractiveness of Electric Vehicles (EVs) was update of their software. Therefore, we could say that EVs are next smartphones in our society.

Technological challenges in EVs

One of the big technological challenges of electric vehicles is the cost of batteries, which accounts for about one third of total cost. The problem of batteries is not only their cost but also several technological issues such as short lifetime, being flammable and explosive.

Solid state batteries are one of possible solutions and could transform industries drastically. In Samsung SDI’s homepage, we can see what a solid state battery is. In addition to this, in other article, we can see how the development of a solid state battery is going on. In order to develop this kind of products in ASEAN region, the Global Power Synergy plc (GPSC), an electricity and utility company from Thailand, announced a $35.2 million investment in the first, small-scale battery cell plant in the country in 2020. The company aims to utilize 24M SemiSolid technology, which previously was validated by Kyocera. We safely say that the journey that Thailand will be the EV production hub in ASEAN just starts now.