BOI Thailand
M A Y    2016
N E W S   F R O M   T H A I L A N D
An Update on News Impacting Business in Thailand and the ASEAN Region

2016 is proving to be an interesting year for global markets, especially the economies of Southeast Asia.Thailand is poised to take the next step to fully integrate ASEAN markets, as the roots of the ASEAN Economic Community start to take hold and the Trans Pacific Partnership comes together.

We stand ready to work to optimize the benefits these two opportunities bring, not only for Thai businesses, but for foreign businesses that call Thailand home.

Over the past few decades, Thailand has firmly established itself as a leader in Asian automotive and advanced manufacturing.We now produce over 1.5 million commercial and private-use vehicles per year.The ASEAN Economic Community and TPP will be important for our investors exporting to the rest of Asia, especially our automotive investors.

2016 also marks the 50th anniversary of the Treaty of Amity between the United States and Thailand.We mark 50 years of cross-border business and collaboration that has brought prosperity to both of our countries.

This milestone demonstrates the close economic ties our two countries have and Thailand’s commitment to ensure that U.S. investors thrive while doing business in our country.In that spirit, the Thai Government has implemented a new strategic Super-Cluster policy, which we highlighted in our last newsletter.The Super-Cluster initiative is designed to link Thailand’s industry cluster assets and strengthen the clusters by adding mission critical elements that help businesses become more efficient and competitive.The Super Cluster program is open to foreign businesses and is designed to help ensure their operations in Thailand outperform their other operations in Asia.

We’re working hard to ensure that our investors and our indigenous companies are able to compete in the global market and that they can benefit from the advantages our key trade agreements afford.Thailand is committed to being a good business partner to our foreign investors and my team at the Board of Investment based here in the United States, is ready to work with you to facilitate the smooth transition of your business into the Thai market.

We look forward to speaking with you and assisting your company with its market entry and operations in Thailand.

Korbsiri Iamsuri

Thailand Board of Investment, North America

Thailand now produces over 1.5 million commercial and personal vehicles per year and has become home to the operations of global automotive giants such as Ford, Isuzu, Mazda, Mitsubishi, BMW, General Motors, Daihatsu, Honda, Mercedes-Benz, Nissan, Tata, Toyota, and Volvo.

With exports driving growth, Thailand’s advanced manufacturing and automotive operations continue to grow. It is currently the largest automotive market in Southeast Asia and the ninth largest auto producer in the world.

Thailand has over 2,400 automotive component manufacturers operating in the country, with 709 of them being OEM’s (original equipment manufacturers). This vast network of car-production supply chain companies, is composed of small and large operations and local and foreign companies.

As demand throughout Asia continues to increase, Thailand’s position in the industry will strengthen. Industry analysts predict that not only with Thailand secure its automotive, big bike, and industrial equipment capabilities, but that the country is poised to become the green automotive production base of Asia.

Foreign companies continue to expand their operations in the Thai market and the Thai government is supporting the industry with incentives and its new Super Cluster policy, to ensure that Thailand secures its position as the “Detroit of Asia”.


Thailand has become Vietnam's leading automobile exporter in the first quarter of this year, with a volume of more than 7,800 units, a 64.5 per cent increase compared with the same period last year. This increase in the consumption of Thai made goods, is being seen across all consumer products in Vietnam. The preference for Thai goods is attributed to a belief that Thai made products are of superior quality to those made in Korea and China.

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BMW is spending THB220m (US$6.3m) on a new national parts distribution center in Bang-Na, on the outskirts of the Thai capital Bangkok.

The new center covers an area of 5,000sq m and will serve as the main spare parts distribution center for the group's BMW, Mini and Motorrad brands. It will replace the existing facility in Phra Pradaeng, which is much smaller.

BMW-Mini sales rose by close to 5% to 8,768 units last year, in a depressed market environment, while motorcycle sales jumped by over 80% to 1,280 units.

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BMW Group Manufacturing Thailand has announced that it will be looking to increase its completely built-up (CBU) exports for 2016 and the following year. The Group aims to ship 10,000 cars annually, mainly to China, according to a report by the Bangkok Post.

The increase in shipments is in line with the company’s international growth strategy. In September 2015, BMW’s Munich headquarters announced it will invest 1.1 billion baht into expanding the Amata City industrial estate factory in Rayong, which is operated by BMW Manufacturing Thailand.

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The Treaty of Amity and Economic Relations between the Kingdom of Thailand and the United States of America was signed in 1966. 2016 marks the 50th anniversary of the close business ties between Thailand and the United States.

The treaty allows for American citizens and businesses incorporated in the US, or in Thailand, to maintain a majority shareholding or to wholly own a company in Thailand, and thereby engage in business on the same basis as would a Thai national.

For more information regarding the Treaty of Amity and Economic Relations, please visit:

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  About BOI

The Thailand Board of Investment (BOI) is the inward investment promotion agency for Thailand that assists foreign investors in identifying business opportunities, providing tax incentives and privileges, and supporting foreign companies seeking to expand into the Asian market. Our services are free of charge and customized to help your business succeed in Thailand.

For more information, please visit