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GAC AION charges ahead in Thailand with new EV hub in Rayong

Photo courtesy of The Nation

China’s 4th-largest electric vehicle (EV) manufacturer, GAC AION New Energy Automobile, is gearing up to revolutionise Thailand’s automotive landscape with the inauguration of a state-of-the-art manufacturing facility in Rayong’s Eastern Economic Corridor (EEC) on July 17.

Industry Minister Pimphattra Wichaikul announced that the cutting-edge plant, costing a staggering 2.3 billion baht, is poised to kick off operations by November. Boasting an impressive annual production capacity of 50,000 units, the new facility underscores Thailand’s ambition to become a regional EV manufacturing powerhouse.

“The opening of a new EV manufacturing plant strengthens Thailand’s potential in becoming a manufacturing hub for electric vehicles in this region, in line with the government’s investment policy.”

Pimphattra emphasised the balanced approach of the government in promoting both electric and internal combustion engine (ICE) vehicles, recognising their collective importance to the economy.

“ICE vehicle manufacturers are crucial to domestic part manufacturers and other supply chain providers, which comprise mostly SMEs. The ministry has been coordinating with the Japan External Trade Organisation (JETRO) and the Japanese Chamber of Commerce in Bangkok to find suitable measures to help ICE manufacturers cope with declining sales and changes in the auto industry.”

An insider revealed that the Rayong plant marks GAC AION’s first venture into overseas manufacturing for right-hand drive vehicles, with the inaugural model being the Aion Y Plus. This significant move comes after GAC AION announced its investment plan in November last year and initiated construction in January.

The company is confident that this new plant will propel Thailand towards its ambitious goal of selling 1 million EVs by 2025. Additionally, GAC AION plans to establish 34 sales outlets across Thailand and is eyeing further expansion in Southeast Asia, with a new factory in Indonesia already in the pipeline, reported The Nation.

READ ALSO  Thai police arrest man for stealing motorcycles to fund drug use

In related news, Tokio Marine Insurance (Thailand) Public Company Limited recently announced changes in its EV insurance policy, which came into effect on July 1. The news sparked significant discussion among EV users.

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