At the end of August, Thailand announced that it was looking to stimulate car sales in the country, which had fallen significantly as a result of the Covid-19 pandemic. The plan will see tax incentives being offered to individuals and companies in a bid to get them to exchange their old cars for new vehicles.

The country’s ministry of industry is proposing to launch trade-in coupons worth 100,000 baht (RM13,260) each to car owners, who can also use their expense to reduce tax. Discussions are underway and the project is expected to be forwarded to the country’s cabinet for a final say within two or three months, the Bangkok Post reported.

Industry minister Suriya Jungrungreangkit said that the project involving the trade-in coupon scheme will be open to all types of car models, including EVs, and will run for five years, a timeframe that will help restore the Thai automotive industry. “This is a quick-win project to help car manufacturers and related businesses crushed by the impact of Covid-19,” he said.

According to the nation’s land transport department, the country has about three million cars registered that have been in use for over 15 years, and the eventual aim is also to reduce pollution from these with the switch to newer, more efficient vehicles.

Thailand’s move to offer tax incentives to buyers has a similar intent to our tax relief measures announced as part of the Penjana economic stimulus plan, although the mechanics are different. Our incentives see a 100% sales tax exemption on locally-assembled (CKD) models and 50% on fully-imported (CBU) models being offered until December 31, 2020, which is a much shorter timeframe.

Aside from the duration, do you think that the proposed Thai incentive scheme is more advantageous? Bear in mind that while a blanket RM13k sounds like a lot, cars in Thailand are also more expensive in a direct forex comparison. Share your viewpoints with us in the comments section.

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