Industry ministry prepares to help small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) upgrade their factory technology to robotic and automation systems under $ 2.5 billion soft loan program baht.
Only 25% of factories in Thailand currently use robotics, automation and systems integration (SI), according to the Office of Industrial Economics (OIE).
The soft loan, with an annual interest rate of 1%, will help SMEs improve and modernize their factory operations in line with the government’s Thailand 4.0 program, which emphasizes a transition to technological advancements and services. high level.
The money is allocated from a fund for SMEs under the Pracha Rat program.
The authorities want to see factories adopt new technologies, add value to their products and reduce the unpleasant impacts caused during production processes on the environment, said Minister of Industry Suriya Jungrungreangkit.
“The government wants to improve the business efficiency of SMEs in order to stimulate the overall economy,” he said.
More domestic production using robots will reduce imports of robotic technology by 12%, according to the OIE.
In 2017, the firm approved a robotics and automation development plan to support S-curve industries.
“The government expects the plan to lead to investments in robotics and automation worth over 200 billion baht in 2021 and help reduce imports of robotics and automation technologies,” said Thongchai Chawalitpichaet, head of the OIE.
Thailand aims to become a hub for robotics and automation in Asean by 2026.
The government plans to increase the number of IS experts to 1,400, from the current 200, to meet the demand for robotic and plant operating system integration and to prepare for the installation of IT technologies. nationwide automation.
Panuwat Triyangkulsri, deputy permanent secretary for industry and chairman of the Robotics Center of Excellence, said the center will help train workers in new technologies to develop the skills needed in the 21st century.
The Board of Investment also plays an important role in promoting manufacturing efficiency.
It offers a 50% reduction in corporate tax for three years for investment projects aimed at modernizing technology and improving production.