Bmw motorcycle production in Thailand

Jan 21, 2011
According to Mcot News, BMW is to use Thailand as a base for manufacturing big bikes, according to Thailand's industry minister.

Pongsvas Svasti said after a BMW Group executive from Germany, Frank-Peter Arndt, met with him Friday to affirm the company will use Thailand as base to manufacture its big bike for further domestic sales and exports.

Mr Arndt said the company sees continuous opportunity growth of Thailand's automotive industry and that the country is ASEAN's main production centre. The big bike model with 250-500cc engines has been in growing demand in the worldwide market.

BMW asked Thailand to train high quality employees, to which the industry ministry agreed to help.

Also, Thailand's adjustment of its vehicle excise tax system in accord with carbon dioxide emission levels will match BMW's vehicle development standards.

Meanwhile, Mr Pongsvas said he believed that the government's minimum wage raise of Bt300 to be launched nationwide next year would not affect big industries, particularly automotive industry, for employees are already hired at a higher rate than Bt300. In a related matter, Board of Investment (BOI) secretary-general Atchaka Sibunruang said BOI benefit adjustment on big bikes investment is provided to investors from the standard of 500cc engine to lower to 250cc engine in order that Thailand becomes ASEAN's big bikes manufacturing base. However, the benefits are conditional--all engines must be made in Thailand.

The move has attracted other bike manufacturers for more investments including Honda, Kawasaki, Triumph, and Ducati.

Honda and Kawasaki produce bikes with 250cc engines but less than 500cc, together at around 380,000 units/year. Triumph and Ducati manufacture 67,000 units/year of big bikes in Thailand.

The BOI aims to make Thailand ASEAN's big bike production hub in the coming years, hoping that each maker will manufacture around 100,000 units/year for further lowered production cost