Singha eyes investment in industrial park
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Singha eyes investment in industrial park

A digital rendition of the 1,790-rai World Food Valley industrial estate planned for Ang Thong's Chaiyo district.
A digital rendition of the 1,790-rai World Food Valley industrial estate planned for Ang Thong's Chaiyo district.

SET-listed property firm Singha Estate plans to invest 2.42 billion baht to develop World Food Valley industrial estate on 1,790 rai in Ang Thong's Chaiyo district.

The investment includes 510 million baht for the entirety of shares of Park Industry Co, which owns the estate, and 1.72 billion baht for development of the estate and other costs.

Chutinant Bhirombhakdi, chairman of Singha Estate, said the company's acquisition of the industrial estate is closely linked to three power plants in which the firm acquired a stake.

"This purchase gives us competitive strength and creates a highly resilient business," he said.

Singha Estate signed a definitive agreement on Thursday to acquire 100% of Park Industry's shares from Boon Rawd Brewery Co. The transfer is slated for the third quarter of 2021.

Thitima Rungkwansiriroj, chief executive of Singha Estate, said the combination of industrial estate and power generation businesses will create significant financial and operational benefits.

"Industrial estates are one of the largest consumers of power," she said.

"The operations inside the estate create demand for power generated by our three power plants."

As World Food Valley focuses on food, there will also be demand from food processors for food-grade steam from power plants, said Mrs Thitima.

The power plants offer recurring income, providing steady cash flow that reduces risk from cash flow fluctuation in industrial land sales, she said.

"Apart from being a great strategic fit, we see potential in this sector in central Thailand," said Mrs Thitima.

"The average occupancy rate at Thai industrial estates was 80% at the end of last year, with the central region topping the list at 89%."

She said the company envisions World Food Valley at the heart of Thailand's drive to be the "Kitchen of the World" and one of the world's top food producers.

The location is strategic for the food sector because it is in the middle of the country's food and raw material supply chain for rice, dairy products and poultry, said Mrs Thitima.

The location also has access to an abundant supply of water because of its proximity to the Chao Phraya River.

The government is backing the development of the food processing sector as part of its long-term policies.

The Board of Investment (BoI) reported applications for investment privileges in the agriculture and food sectors were among the fastest growing.

Thailand's central region accounted for around half of all BoI applications in 2020.

The demand for land in industrial estates in Thailand is forecast to increase once Covid-19 related foreign travel restrictions are eased.

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