Thailand okays Honda eco-car plan

3 October, 2007


The Thailand investment board has reportedly okayed a 6.7-billion-baht investment proposal by Honda Automobile in Thailand.

Honda has lined up 3.8 billion baht to expand existing facilities and 2.9 billion baht for a new eco-car production line that can make up to 120,000 units per year.

It is expected that at least half of Honda's eco-cars would be marketed locally with the rest exported to ASEAN, Asia-Pacific, and European countries.

According to industry reports, Thailandís eco-car program offers special sops to automobile manufacturers producing cars with engines of up to 1,300cc and fuel consumption of less than 5 litres per 100 km. The government has stipulated that cars also must meet the Euro-IV emissions norms, which limit carbon dioxide to 120 gms a km.

The government has also okayed the setting up of a cut-and-blend metal factory for TT Steel Processing (Thailand) worth 1.5 billion baht, and a Double A Paper writing-paper plant worth 6.2 billion baht. Reports added that PTT Chemical's butene and propylene expansion projects worth 2.8 billion baht were also given the green signal, while parent PTT Plc received privileges for its 1.2-billion-baht, 30-megawatt hydroelectricity plant with steam output of 90 tonnes per hour.

Two companies received privileges for cargo transport services: the 3.7- billion-baht Hutchison Laem Chabang Terminal and the 2.5-billion-baht Map Ta Phut Tank Terminal. However, the BoI rejected six ethanol projects due to the prospect of an ethanol surplus.


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