Thailand Nabs $285m Changan EV Plant as Chinese Investment Booms

Changan Automobile will start making electric vehicles in Thailand, its first manufacturing location outside of China, as the state-owned Chinese auto manufacturer looks to boost its exports.

According to a statement from the Thai Board of Investments on Thursday, Changan will make an initial investment of 9.8 billion baht ($285 million). Changan Chairman Zhu Huarong made the announcement at the Shanghai Auto Show on Tuesday. Over the next four years, the manufacturer will invest a total of 4 billion yuan ($581 million) in Thailand.

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In terms of global EV sales in 2022, Changan has leapfrogged to number 15. By 2030, Changan wants to have annual international sales of more than 1.2 million units.

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Changan’s Thai factory’s capacity will be 100,000 cars per year in the first phase and double to 200,000 in the second when manufacturing is anticipated to start the following year. The Eastern Economic Corridor, a special economic zone encompassing three provinces along the Gulf of Thailand, is where it will be constructed.

Related: Chinese Cars Shaking Up the EV Market in Thailand

Right-hand drive electric and hybrid vehicles, as well as batteries for sale to other countries in Southeast Asia, Australia, New Zealand, South Africa, and the United Kingdom, will all be produced at Changan’s Thai plant.

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In anticipation of Beijing’s EV subsidies ending, Chinese manufacturers are increasingly focusing on international markets amid a fierce domestic price war that was initiated late last year. Although Chinese passenger vehicle sales during this year are unchanged compared to the prior year, sales of electric and hybrid vehicles have increased by 21.9% MoM in the first 3 months of this calendar year already.

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Changan began selling light trucks in Thailand in 2014. Aside from electric vehicles, it is looking to push pickup trucks in Southeast Asia, South America, Australia, and New Zealand.

Source: Nikkei Asia

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