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PM orders state agencies to buy EVs

Prime Minister Srettha Thavisin has ordered state agencies to buy electric vehicles to replace older vehicles, build more charging stations nationwide and make insurance for EVs affordable.

The directive is part of a broader campaign to promote greater adoption of green transport to reduce carbon emissions and develop the country into a production hub for EVs and their parts.

In addition to buying EVs to replace old vehicles that are being decommissioned, government organisations have been told to buy EVs for new missions and new position holders.

The transport and finance ministries, meanwhile, will work out measures to make all public transport vehicles — including buses, taxis and tuk tuks — electric.

The energy and transport ministries will also support the installation of enough charging stations nationwide.

More measures are also planned to encourage the replacement of vehicles using internal combustion engines with EVs by the general public. This will involve numerous government ministries and agencies reviewing their regulations and considering incentives.

The measures will include promoting a market for used EVs, incentives for EV repair garages and attractive premium rates for EV insurance.

The industry and finance ministries, along with the Board of Investment and the Eastern Economic Corridor Policy Committee, will continue to support the production of important EV parts such as batteries and transmission systems.

Mr Srettha himself was recently spotted using his wife’s Tesla Model Y to attend some meetings in Bangkok. He said he wanted to make a good impression as he would be negotiating with the American EV maker next month about investing in Thailand.

EV sales in Thailand have been surging this year, helped by incentives for purchasers. At the current rate, EV penetration will reach 8.7% of all vehicles this year, up from 3.8% in 2022, according to a recent report by BMI, an affiliate of Fitch Solutions.

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