AWS bets big on Thailand
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AWS bets big on Thailand

Will spend $5bn over 15 years on cloud

Supattanapong: Others to follow suit
Supattanapong: Others to follow suit

A plan by Amazon Web Services (AWS) to invest US$5 billion (around 190 billion baht) in Thailand over the next 15 years underscores the country's significance as a regional hub for digital data, says Deputy Prime Minister Supattanapong Punmeechaow.

AWS, Amazon's cloud computing division, held a press conference on Tuesday to announce its planned investment in cloud computing infrastructure in Thailand, as part of its new AWS Asia Pacific (Bangkok) Region.

The plan will be carried out in phases, with the first-phase investment of 20 billion baht to begin straight away, Mr Supattanapong said, adding the company has already submitted investment promotion applications to the Board of Investment.

"AWS's hyper-scale investment project has demonstrated that Thailand is a digital hub and data centre in the region. The investment comes from the world's leading company, and investment from other related industries will follow suit,'' the minister said.

The investment plan includes the construction of data centres as well as the procurement of goods and services from regional businesses, AWS said.

The infrastructure hub in Bangkok aims to help customers in the region securely store data, and serve end users better.

"AWS's plan to build data centres in Thailand is a significant milestone that will bring advanced cloud computing services to more organisations and help us deliver our Thailand 4.0 ambition to create a digitised, value-based economy," Mr Supattanapong said.

AWS's cloud platform offers more than 200 services, including storage, robotics and artificial intelligence.

Mr Suppattanapong said that the government is also trying to attract more foreign investment in other industries.

Measures are being improved to promote investment in the manufacturing of batteries for electric vehicles (EVs), which will support the EV industry in the long term, he said, adding the measures are expected to be rolled out by the end of this year.

The government has also met private operators for talks on measures to draw foreign investment in smart electronics, an upstream industry supplying microchips for EVs, the minister added.

Several smart electronics manufacturers are considering moving their production bases out of the US and Taiwan due to geopolitical issues, Mr Supattanapong said.

This could present an opportunity for Thailand to attract their investment, even though the kingdom may face stiff competition from Malaysia and Singapore which have similar goals, he noted.

Regarding investment in bio-, circular and green (BCG) industries, Mr Supattanapong said that a world-leading company would also invest in a bioplastics project in Thailand. He declined to give details.

BCG, which was announced by the Prayut Chan-o-cha government as a national agenda item, is aimed at encouraging manufacturers to adopt techniques that can add value to products, and that have no or minimal impact on the environment.

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