Tesla is looking to acquire a large piece of land for a factory in Thailand, according to the Prime Minister following a visit from Tesla executives.
Even though Tesla is putting the brakes for now on Gigafactory Mexico, its next factory, the automaker is reportedly looking for future factory locations to pull the trigger on once the economy starts to recover.
There have been talks about Canada, India, and more recently, Thailand.
Tesla only somewhat recently started to operate officially in Thailand with opening orders late last year and starting deliveries this year.
Along with entering the market, we learned in September that Tesla would be considering a factory in Thailand after Prime Minister Srettha Thavisin after meeting with Elon Musk.
Now, things are getting more serious. Tesla executives have reportedly visited Thailand and met with Srettha again. Following the visit, the Prime Minister (via Reuters):
I went out of my way to entertain them so they would fall in love with Thailand …. they are looking for 2,000 rai (320 hectares) of land,” Srettha said, adding he was confident that the electric vehicle maker would invest in Thailand.
This is almost 800 acres reportedly in an industrial area. It would imply that Tesla is looking at potentially building a factory in the country.
Thailand is already one of the biggest vehicle assembly hubs in Asia with up to 2 million vehicles produced locally per year.
If Tesla were to establish a manufacturing facility in the country, it could greatly increase that number considering the automaker likes large high-volume factories. However, Tesla could also be looking at a part or battery factory.
The Thai auto market is more significant than most people would think. More than 750,000 cars were sold in the market last year, and it is expected to ramp up to 800K–900K this year. However, most of those vehicles are not in the same price range as Tesla vehicles.
But a Tesla factory in the country would likely produce for exportations.