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Thailand, Japan agree dialogue on next-gen car industry

Japanese Prime Minister Fumio Kishida agreed Sunday with his Thai counterpart Srettha Thavisin to consider launching a dialogue on the next-generation auto industry as part of their efforts to address energy and climate change issues.

Mr Kishida proposed to set up the framework at their bilateral meeting in Tokyo on the sidelines of the Japan-Asean special summit to mark 50 years of friendship and cooperation earlier in the day, in which decarbonisation was among the agenda items.

The envisaged dialogue is aimed at discussing measures to maintain the industrial competitiveness of Thailand, a major manufacturing base for Japanese automakers, in producing and exporting next-generation cars such as electric vehicles, the government said.

Mr Srettha was quoted by the Japanese government as telling Mr Kishida that Thailand will continue to support activities by auto-related companies from the world’s third-biggest economy in the kingdom.

Later Sunday, Mr Kishida also told Philippine President Ferdinand Marcos Jr during their bilateral meeting that Japan will ramp up cooperation on energy transition and infrastructure development, according to the government.

At the Japan-Asean summit, the leaders adopted a “joint vision statement”, pledging to establish a new initiative for the car industry in Southeast Asia and strengthen collaboration on promoting energy transition and low-carbon technologies.

On Monday, a summit of the 11-member Asia Zero Emission Community framework, initiated by Japan to help achieve decarbonization in Southeast Asia, will be held in Tokyo, involving Australia and Asean members except Myanmar.

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