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Pattaya Daily News

16 February 2009 :: 20:02:13 pm 3394

Auto Parts Makers Seek Government Assistance

As Thailand‘s automobile production and sales are expected to retreat sharply this year due to the global economic slump, four domestic auto and parts institutions on Monday sought government assistance from Industry Minister Charnchai Chairungrueng.
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Bangkok, the 16th of Febuary 2009 [TNA]: Mr. Charnchai said he had met representatives of four institutions, including the Federation of Thai Industries, who asked the government to lower the excise tax by 3 per cent for all cars at the ex-factory price in order to stimulate car buying in the country.

They also asked the government to allow new car buyers to deduct personal income tax, Mr. Charnchai said, adding that the tax reduction proposal must be forwarded to the Finance Ministry for its consideration.

Representatives of the four institutions also proposed medium- and long-term measures including energy and development policies, and amending rules to help reduce lay-offs in the auto sector.

On the part of the Ministry of Industry, Mr. Charnchai said he had asked automotive manufacturers to lower car prices from Bt30,000-50,000 per unit so that producers would keep their employees and help the government regarding the problem of unemployment.

He said that car manufacturers were also requested to be more flexible regarding hire purchase arrangements for farmers and small retailers who do not have financial guarantors.

The government will help by offering low interest loans, and set up a joint committee with Prime Minister Abhisit Vejjajiva as chairman with the objective of boosting competitiveness.

Wallop Tiasiri, director of Thailand Automotive Institute, said the government would lose about Bt20 billion if excise taxes are cut as proposed and another 5 per cent in taxes if the vehicle could run on gasohol E20.

Auto sales during the first quarter of this year are expected to plunge 40 per cent while production for exports during calendar 2009 is expected to decline more than 25 per cent, causing production capacity to slip to 59.9 per cent, Mr. Wallop said.

About 46,100 employees in both auto and auto parts production will become unemployed out of the total 350,000 people now working in the sectors, he said. (TNA)

Reporter : Methawee   Photo : Internet   Category : Business News

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