Sa Kaeo SEZ set for December

Sa Kaeo SEZ set for December

An artist's rendering of Sa Kaeo Industrial Estate, the first scheduled to open under the government's SEZ scheme.
An artist's rendering of Sa Kaeo Industrial Estate, the first scheduled to open under the government's SEZ scheme.

Sa Kaeo Industrial Estate is poised to become the first project to commence under the government's special economic zone (SEZ) initiative, with operations expected to start in December, says the Industrial Estate Authority of Thailand (IEAT).

Deputy governor Somchint Pilouk said Sa Kaeo Industrial Estate occupies 660 rai of land leased from the Treasury Department since February 2016 and is only 3km from the Thailand-Cambodia border in Aranyaprathet district.

The IEAT has allocated 433 rai for industrial zones, 163 rai for infrastructure areas and 64 rai for green space.

"The Sa Kaeo SEZ is under a property development concept of an eco-industrial town," Ms Somchint said.

She said the IEAT completed the first stage of development in early 2018, while the second stage is under way and includes related infrastructure and industrial zone allocation.

The industrial estate will provide a 50-megawatt power supply, a 5,000-cubic-metre water utility, a 4000-cubic-metre water treatment facility, a 40-metre-wide main road, a 20-metre-wide secondary road and an incinerator waste-disposal service.

Ms Somchint said the estate has had three investors sign rental contracts. They plan to do business in hygiene chemical production, garment manufacturing and import-export of garments.

Canada's ZIM International Co recently signed a rental contract with the industrial estate for a six-rai land plot to build a garment factory and start operations in 2018.

"The Canadian firm plans to use the many benefits of the Sa Kaeo SEZ, such as local labourers, connections to logistics routes, expansion of production lines and export markets, and links with other industrial clusters in the country," Ms Somchint said. "We expect three more investors to soon sign contracts with the IEAT: a convenience store chain, a cosmetics maker and a warehouse provider."

This year, the IEAT offered a promotion for early-bird investors that included exemption from rental fees in the first year and discounts of 30% and 20% in the second and third years, as well as zero maintenance fees for all industrial tenants in the first year.

There are eight industrial zones with rental fees ranging from 166,000 to 199,200 baht per rai per year.

In the SEZs, all investors get an exemption from import-export duties, value-added tax and excise tax, plus an exemption from corporate income tax for eight years, a double deduction for transport and utility costs, and a 25% deduction for project infrastructure installation.

The SEZ scheme began in 2015 in 10 provinces: Tak, Trat, Mukdahan, Sa Kaeo, Songkhla, Chiang Rai, Nong Khai, Nakhon Phanom, Kanchanaburi and Narathiwat.

The Sa Kaeo SEZ is targeting 12 industries: agriculture and fisheries; textiles and leather; furniture; jewellery and gems; medical equipment; automobiles and machines; electronics; plastics; pharmaceuticals; logistics; industrial estates and zones; and tourism.

The IEAT spent 1 billion baht to develop 629 rai of land leased from the Treasury Department in Songkhla province for an SEZ for rubber and agricultural processing.

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