Tesla is expected to meet with Thailand Prime Minister (PM) Srettha Thavisin next month.
PM Srettha recently drove his wife’s white Model Y to the Royal Thai Police headquarters on Monday before heading to the weekly Cabinet meeting at the Government House. He noted how easy it was to get in and out of the Tesla vehicle, comparing the Model Y to his Mercedes Benz S-Class vehicle he usually drives as Prime Minister of Thailand.
The Prime Minister shared that he wants to win Tesla’s heart at the meeting in November, hinting that he would try to persuade the company to build a factory in Thailand. PM Srettha met with Elon Musk last month and talked about Tesla, SpaceX, and Starlink. At the time, he was optimistic about Tesla investing in Thailand.
The Prime Minister of Thailand estimated that the country could expect up to $5 billion in investments from companies including Tesla, Google, and Microsoft. He specifically mentioned the possibility of a Tesla electric vehicle (EV) manufacturing facility.
Tesla delivered its first Model 3 and Model Y units in Thailand earlier this year. The country did not impose import fees on Tesla vehicles from Giga Shanghai. Tesla vehicles do not qualify for EV subsidies from the Thai government because they are not built in the country.
During his trip to Beijing this week, the Prime Minister plans to promote Thailand as an electric vehicle hub in Southeast Asia. PM Srettha and his delegation will attend China’s 3rd Belt and Road Forum this week. He aims to strengthen trade and investment ties during his visit to China.
The 3rd Belt and Road Forum celebrates the 10th anniversary of the Belt and Road Initiative launched by China’s President Xi Jinping in 2013. The Initiative aims to build a global infrastructure and supply chain, connecting China to the rest of the world in a modern version of the Silk Road.