Which country to put more emphasis in ASEAN: Indonesia or Thailand?

Type de publication:

Conference Paper


Gerpisa colloquium, Paris (2013)


automobile industry, Indonesia, Thailand


Needless to say, ASEAN is important market especially for Japanese car manufacturers as well as its global suppliers like Denso. Its importance for these multinationals has much more increased with recent political tension between Japan and China.

Among ASEAN countries, Thailand has been regarded as hub of automobile industry since the Asian Economic Crisis in 1998. At this moment, Thailand has largest car production capacity and richest supplier bases in the region without any question. Thailand’s Eco car (small passenger car) policy made further increase in its automobile production. It is also making change in automobile market structure of Thailand.

However, condition has been gradually changing. First, Indonesia, largest populated country in the region, is finally becoming a largest automobile market in ASEAN. Second, shortage of talented staff and capacity of trade port is becoming apparent in Thailand due to great increase of automobile production as well as other industrial goods.

This new condition, however, does not necessarily mean that automobile hub will gradually move from Thailand to Indonesia. Thailand is obviously approaching the limit of automobile production increase; on the other hand, Indonesia also has so many bottlenecks for its production increase.

In this presentation, I would like to organize strength and bottlenecks of the two countries, looking into their market structure, social condition and so on. And then, I will try to describe future of automobile industry in this region, hoping to serve as a useful reference for automobile manufacturers and suppliers.

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