Japan’s four largest carmakers will invest 150 billion baht in Thailand over five years to develop the electric vehicle industry.

Four major Japanese carmakers are set to invest 150 billion baht in Thailand’s electric car industry over the next five years, the Bangkok Post reported, citing a statement from government spokesman Chaya Vacharonke.

Toyota Motor and Honda Motor will invest 50 billion baht each, Isuzu Motors will invest 30 billion baht, and Mitsubishi Motors will invest 20 billion baht, Chai said, citing information from the Board of Investment.

Production of electric pickup trucks will continue to increase over the next few years as investments by Japanese carmakers support Thailand’s shift from internal combustion engines to electric vehicles.

The Japanese partners confirmed the intentions following talks between Prime Minister Settha Thaisinh and seven Japanese carmakers during a trip to Japan, where the prime minister attended the 50th-anniversary summit celebrating 50 years of ASEAN-Japan friendship and cooperation held in Tokyo last week.

According to Chai’s statement, Japanese carmakers have confirmed their intention to use Thailand as a major production base in the region, and the Thai government is willing to support the shift to modern car technology to reduce carbon dioxide emissions.

Japanese carmakers have also offered to develop infrastructure to replace commercial vehicle batteries, Chai revealed, adding that the government is keen to promote a favourable business environment in Thailand for investors from Japan.

The measures include visa-free travel for short-term business trips to promote trade, investment and business between the two countries from 1 January to 31 December 2026.

The government believes Japan will help develop industries that Thailand is keen to promote, including electric vehicle manufacturing, biomedical industry, digital industry, infrastructure development, agriculture and human resources.

“The prime minister emphasises that Japanese carmakers will play an important role in helping Thailand become a leader in electric vehicles in the region,” Chai said.

“Thailand is keen to cooperate with Japanese automakers who want to expand investment in the country to create mutual benefits for the electric vehicle industry of both countries,” the spokesman said.

The Federation of Thai Industries expects Thailand to produce 2.5 million vehicles in 2030, of which 70 per cent will be next-generation vehicles based on internal combustion engine technology, and the rest will be zero-emission vehicles in the electric vehicle segment.

From January to November, 612 foreigners were authorised to invest in Thailand under the Foreign Business Act, up 15 per cent from the same period last year, said Auramon Suphavithum, director-general of the Business Development Department.

During the period, foreign investment was valued at 98.28 billion baht, down 13 per cent from the same period last year, and created jobs for 6,086 Thais, up 22 per cent, Auramon said.

Japanese auto giants invest 150 billion baht in Thailand.

The largest number – 129 foreign investors – were from Japan, with an investment of 30.1 billion baht. They were followed by 95 investors from Singapore with an investment of 22.2 billion baht.

Also, 95 investors came from the US with investments worth 4.23 billion baht, 56 from China with investments worth 15.8 billion baht and 26 from Hong Kong with investments worth 5.8 billion baht,” Auramon said.

Most of the foreign businesses authorised during the period meet Thailand’s infrastructure development needs and the government’s policies to enhance the country’s competitiveness. For example, electric railway projects, software development, online platforms and oil drilling,” said the head of the Business Development Department.

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