By THE NATION
The 400,000-square metre centre will supply trucks and buses to the Asean region.
Apichin Jotikasthira, deputy permanent secretary of the Ministry of Industry, was present as guest of honour at the ceremony. Others included Ninnart Chaithirapinyo, chairman of Toyota Motor Thailand Co Ltd; Makoto Minagawa, senior managing officer, Hino Motor Ltd; Tetsuya Daikoku, managing officer, Mitsui & Co Ltd as well as officials from government agencies.
The Bt3.65-billion centre features facilities for product planning, R&D and manufacturing, integrated with a test course and an operation base.
The project aims to offer Thai and Asean consumers ‘best-fit’ products that exceed their expectations by 2024.
The investment will contribute to the Thai economy in terms of exports, transfer of technology and specialised skills. It will also enhance employment in the areas of research and design, company executives said.
Somchai Pleankaew, president of Hino Motors Manufacturing (Thailand) Ltd, said: “In the next two years, after our first production and development centre in Asean has started operation, Hino will not merely be a domestic manufacturer of trucks and buses, but we will position Thailand as an important development and production base for the Asean region and beyond. The centre will comprise a model factory with the latest technologies, integrated with the development office and a test course. Our goal is to develop and produce the ‘best fit’ products for our customers, both in Thailand and Asean, in a timely manner. The new centre will be a safe and environmentally-friendly workplace for our staffs. Moreover, we will collaborate with Toyota and Hino groups to enhance each company’s competitiveness and further support development of the Thai economy and industries as well as others in the Asean region".
Name: Suvarnabhumi Monozukuri Center
Location: Bang Bo, Samutprakarn Province
Site area: 400,000 sqm
Functions: Product planning, development, and production of Hino vehicles
Products: Light- and medium-duty trucks and buses
Operation startup date: 2021
Employees: Approx 1,300 (at start of operation)
Investment: Bt3.65 billion