Thailand aerospace ambitions to fuel tire sector growth
ERJ staff report (TP)
Bangkok – Thailand’s Board of Investment (BOI) is considering expanding its aerospace industry with a new industrial park, which could offer more opportunities to polymer and tire companies.
According to AIN Online, BOI is looking to repeat its “success” in its automobile industry – the ninth largest in the world – and hopes to boost aerospace growth with Tier 2 and Tier 3 suppliers servicing global OEM supply chains
Thailand already has an $800 million (€598m) aircraft parts market due in part to the lower cost base in that country. The US Commercial Service has forecast a 5-percent annual growth rate for the sector.
Plans are being formulated for the development of an aerospace industrial park, said Aarjin Pattanapanchai, deputy secretary general, BOI, in conversation with AIN Online.
This in turn could mean an increase in the supply of polymers and tires to support aerospace growth.
Thailand’s incentives have already brought in investors. They include exemption of import duties on machinery, an eight-year corporate income tax exemption, 100-percent land ownership as long as the company continues to exist and repatriation of earnings.
These stimuli have encouraged companies, like Michelin, to set up in Thailand, as they look to access the ASEAN market.
Frank Moreau, president of Michelin Aircraft Tires, told AIN Online the country represents one of three industrial facilities in the world for the company, and will see more investment in the future.
The French group is working with schools that are starting to integrate learning with technical skills.
“Michelin hires students in the last year of study that they spend with us. We have been successful in helping modify the curriculum,” a Civil Aviation Training Center official told AIN Online.
Pattanapanchai acknowledged the political turmoil in Thailand over the past year had caused a backlog of progress on roughly 200 foreign investment projects worth over $12 billion. She expressed hope that the projects would start being cleared soon.