Thailand transforms into ASEAN aircraft tire hub

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Thailand Board of Investment announces multiple tire investments in 2016

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The Thailand Board of Investment is playing a significant role at helping grow and expand Thailand’s rubber industry and drive major investments to the country.

In 2016 the Thailand Board of Investments announced more than $312 million USD in investments from global tire and rubber companies. Investments from companies like Bridgestone Corporation, Goodyear Thailand and Shandong Linglong Tire Company, are helping transform the country into an ASEAN hub for aircraft tire production.

“Recent investments by the Thai government in its rubber/tire industry, a plentiful source of raw materials, a skilled workforce and competitive tax incentives is helping attract tire and rubber companies to Thailand,” said Ms. Korbsiri Iamsuri, Director of Thailand Board of Investment New York Office. “The establishment of new plants is expected to further contribute to Thailand’s economic and industrial development.”

The 2016 tire company investment announcements bodes well for the Thai government which aims to upgrade the country’s rubber industry and increase rubber prices. These include:

  • Bridgestone Corporation will be constructing two new manufacturing plants in Thailand. One plant to produce new aircraft tires, and a second plant to produce retread aircraft tires. The total investment will be approximately JPY15.0 billion (USD 150 million) and both new plants are scheduled to start production in December 2019.
  • Goodyear Thailand plans to invest $162 million to build a new radial aviation tire factory and expand production at its Phathumthani plant, located north of Bangkok, to meet growing demand in Asia Pacific. First phase of its three-phase expansion is targeted to begin operations by 2018.
  • After setting up a $700 million tire manufacturing plant in Thailand in 2012, one of China’s largest tire companies, Shandong Linglong Tire Co, said it will expand its investment in the country, and establish a tire-testing center and rubber-compound manufacturing plant.

The Thailand Board of Investment is playing a significant role at helping grow and expand Thailand’s rubber industry and drive major investments to the country. BOI has implemented an investment attraction policy that enables aircraft tire production companies, establishing operations in Thailand, to benefit from exemption of corporate income tax for 8 years, plus exemption of import duties on machinery, raw materials for use in production for export, and other non-tax incentives.

“Our objective is to create world-class industry ecosystems that will enable both Thai and foreign operated companies to be even more successful while operating in Thailand, “said Ms. Iamsuri, “Our goal is to ensure that Thailand is an optimal operating environment for business and ASEAN headquarters for foreign companies.”

A $100 million USD investment by the Thai Government, announced in November 2016, to establish the country’s first-ever automotive testing center in the country, will help grow Thailand’s rubber industry and become a top R&D center for rubber. Construction of the center, which will comprise a tire testing track and six car testing tracts, is expected to start in 2018 and be operational by early 2020.

The R&D unit for tires is a top priority for the government because it aims to upgrade the country’s rubber industry and increase rubber prices,” said Suthon Nikomkate, Director of the Thai Industrial Standards Institute (TISI).

At present, there are 6 million farmers in the Thai rubber sector. The government expects to increase tire production from the current 530,000 tons per year to 1 million tons in the near future.

Asia accounts for 93% of the world natural rubber production with Thailand being the largest producer and exporter of natural rubber; it accounts for approximately 35% of the global natural rubber supply and represents a market value of USD 25 billion a year. The tire industry in Thailand consumes over 50% of the natural rubber produced in the country and is expected to grow at a CAGR of 12% in the period 2014-2019. The main tire brands operating in the country are Bridgestone, Michelin and Goodyear, while other brands include Sumitomo, Yokohoma, Shandong Linglong Tire and Continental.

About BOI                                                    
The Thailand Board of Investment (BOI) is the investment promotion agency for Thailand that facilitates foreign direct investment. BOI’s services are free of charge and customized to help business succeed in Thailand. For more information, please visit and

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