Back in February, Thailand’s state-owned energy group PTT and Taiwan’s Foxconn (Hon Hai Precision Industry) announced the establishment of a joint venture company to produce electric vehicles (EVs) in the Kingdom, starting from 2024.

This timeline was reiterated again last weekend, when Horizon Plus, the JV firm, broke ground on the assembly plant in Chonburi, The Nation reports. According to its chairman Buranin Rattanasombat, the company is on track to deliver its first batch of EVs in 2024. The company plans to build finished cars for other manufacturers, using a platform and software developed by Foxconn.

He said that the partnership is investing around 37 billion baht (RM4.68 billion) into the project, with the bulk of the spend being on the EV assembly plant being constructed at Rojana Nongyai Industrial Park. As highlighted previously, the company said initial production capacity will be 50,000 EVs per year in the first phase of operations.

Foxconn Model C and Model E EV prototypes.

This will triple to 150,000 EVs by 2030 to support growing demand in ASEAN markets, Buranin – who is also PTT’s chief new business and infrastructure officer – said. He added that the establishment of the facility, which will occupy a 500,000 sq metre plot in the heart of the country’s Eastern Economic Corridor (EEC), will also create jobs for 2,000 high-skilled workers.

Buranin said Horizon Plus will operate under a BOL (Build-Operate-Localise) policy to boost long-term competitiveness of the Thai EV industry and supply chain. Kay Chiu, CEO of Horizon Plus, said full automation would boost production capacity and reduce costs, while clean energy will power operations to make the company the region’s most modern and efficient manufacturer.

PTT’s investment in the new company, which stands at 60%, is through its Arun Plus subsidiary, while Foxconn’s interests are being represented by its wholly-owned Lin Yin International Investments subsidiary.