Prayut woos Japanese firm for investment in EV sector, smart cities
The government is calling on Japanese multinational MinebeaMitsumi Inc to manufacture semiconductors that can be used to bolster Thailand’s budding electric vehicle (EV) industry.
The company, which produces machinery components and electronic devices, has several plants in Thailand.
Prime Minister Prayut Chan-o-cha met MinebeaMitsumi CEO, Kainuma Yoshihisa, on Monday to discuss future investment in the EV industry and smart city development.
At the meeting, Prayut said his Japanese counterpart Fumio Kishida had said in May that he would build more Kosen (technology institutes) in Thailand as part of bilateral economic cooperation. Kishida also agreed to boost investment in the electric vehicles industry this year, Prayut said.
“Having more Kosen institutes in Thailand will speed up the transfer of knowledge and technology to Thai workers, which will benefit Japanese manufacturers investing here as they can hire skilled local labour,” Prayut said.
The premier also praised Japanese companies for their continued investment in Thailand, especially during the Covid-19 outbreak and the ongoing global fuel price crisis. He said he hopes to see more investment projects in the future, especially in the manufacturing supply chain to prevent a shortage in key materials.
Prayut and Yoshihisa also discussed plans to promote the use of clean energy in MinebeaMitsumi’s facilities in line with the government’s target of reducing greenhouse gas emissions in the industrial sector.
Yoshihisa said his company was committed to the environment as it is already producing eco-friendly products like smart streetlamps that use less energy, which will soon be supplied to Thailand.
He said MinebeaMitsumi was prioritising investment in Thailand as it is already the company’s largest manufacturing base, and is planning to use the country as one of its export bases in the region.