Hybrid electrical vehicle perks renewed with BEV add-on

Hybrid electrical vehicle perks renewed with BEV add-on

Board of Investment attaches condition to latest investment package

Mitsubishi's assembly plant at Laem Chabang Industrial Estate, where the company's PHEVs will be put together.
Mitsubishi's assembly plant at Laem Chabang Industrial Estate, where the company's PHEVs will be put together.

The Board of Investment (BoI) has agreed to renew investment packages given to hybrid electrical vehicles (HEVs) in a bid to lure more investment in EVs.

According to BoI secretary-general Duangjai Asawachintachit, interested investors are required to submit their applications for HEVs this year, but they are also required to assemble battery electric vehicles (BEVs) within three years.

In March 2017, the BoI approved promotional privileges for EVs, including tax holidays for 5-8 years. The privileges focus on the production of three types of electric cars: HEVs, BEVs and plug-in hybrid electric vehicles (PHEVs).

The promotion covers passenger cars, pickups and buses, with different privilege rates depending on production technology.

HEVs are entitled to a tariff exemption for imported machinery. Investment applications were to be submitted by Dec 31, 2017 in the form of packages covering assembly and key parts production plans.

Applications for the production of PHEVs were required to be submitted as packages covering assembly and key parts production plans by Dec 31, 2018. PHEV investment is eligible for a corporate income tax exemption of three years and import tariff exemptions on machinery.

PHEV investors who manufacture more than one key EV part are entitled to an additional year of corporate income tax exemption per piece. But the combined tax exemptions should not exceed six years.

Applications for the production of BEVs were required to be submitted on a package basis by Dec 31, 2018. BEV investments are entitled to 5-8 years of corporate tax exemption.

"We've found that many companies still want to submit their applications to invest in HEVs," Ms Duangjai said. "The government agrees with the request but requires that investors assemble BEVs as well in order to speed up BEV production."

In related news, the BoI meeting chaired by Prime Minister Prayut Chan-o-cha approved granting privileges to PHEV investment applications worth 3.1 billion baht made by Mitsubishi Motors Thailand. The PHEV production facility will be located in Chon Buri.

"This project is expected to use significant parts produced by domestic manufacturers and promote local parts manufacturing development that will help support the government's EV promotion policy," Ms Duangjai said.

She said the BoI has approved nine EV projects worth 51 billion baht. They comprise four HEV projects, four PHEV projects and one BEV project.

The BoI is also considering many investment applications for PHEV, BEV, battery and electric bus projects worth a combined 1.4 billion baht, and charging station projects worth 36 billion baht.

Yesterday the board also approved investment promotions for the Orange Line's western section, stretching from Bang Khun Non to Min Buri.

The Mass Rapid Transit Authority of Thailand, which handles the project's development, is about to complete the terms of reference, with construction likely to kick off by late this year or early 2020. The project is scheduled to become operational in 2025.

The Orange Line's western section is probably the last mass transit project in Bangkok to be approved by the current government before the general election on March 24.

Yesterday's meeting also approved the development of three science parks in three provinces -- Khon Kaen, Chiang Mai and Songkhla -- to promote science park development in the regions.

There is only one science park at present, in Pathum Thani province.

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