What is the focus of Siam Eastern Industrial Park (SEP)?
KUNANANTAKUL: Siam Eastern Industrial Park (SEP) is one of the industrial parks with the best locations in Rayong. It is very close to the port, about 1 hour from Bangkok, and about 25 minutes to Laem Schabang Port. We completely take care of the environment with water treatment, recycling, and we have a very good electricity system. We also have made sure to install a security system for floods because of the problem that we had a few years ago. Now we have no floods and we have plenty of water for our customers.
What kinds of industrial and manufacturing facilities are best suited for Rayong?
KUNANANTAKUL: SEP is good for all types of factories. Right now, we have about 90% Japanese companies working in the automobile sector. As you know, Thailand, and Rayong in particular, is like the Detroit of Asia. We are the best area to produce cars and that is why there are so many industrial parks in the Rayong area producing auto parts.
How is Siam Eastern Industrial Park 2 (SEP 2) progressing?
KUNANANTAKUL: We are now developing Siam Eastern Industrial Park 2 (SEP 2) and we have to buy new land. We have already sold about 80% of the land in our first industrial park so we are now looking at the new project to accommodate all of our customers that want to expand their factories. Around 2 or 3 years ago, our customers began to want to expand their factories and this is what motivated us to start this new project. This project will accommodate everything. We have green areas and a training center and we make sure that we take care of the environment.
What kinds of government incentives are provided to investors at Siam Eastern Industrial Park (SEP)?
KUNANANTAKUL: We are BOI Zone 3 in Rayong and there are only a few estates in Rayong that are classified as BOI Zone 3. This means that we get the best support from the government and this makes us very competitive. Also, we have the best system for water treatment, and for the new project, we will be implementing the evaporation system, which is a new technology for water systems. This ensures that our customers water needs will be taken care of in the future.Â If you are Zone 3, you have support for import duties, for machines, and also tax incentives on profits for a few years.
How do you ensure environmental protection?
KUNANANTAKUL: We call ourselves an eco-industrial park. Under this concept, we take care of the environment through green initiatives. Our factories recycle and we have the best system to take care of our local environment. We also use the best products in these processes and in water treatment and everything else like that.Â We are also trying to use solar roofs to save energy and remain pollution free. We are planning to use more bio-fuels such as bio-diesel and we already have our own gas station. We are one of the few gas stations that sells 100% bio-diesel gasoline right now.
Right now, we have about 90% Japanese companies working in the automobile sector. As you know, Thailand, and Rayong in particular, is like the Detroit of Asia.
How is the ASEAN Economic Community (AEC) going to impact business for industrial parks?
KUNANANTAKUL:Â We still believe that Thailand is one of the strongest countries in the AEC group. We have a good level, or the best level in the AEC group, for industry. We also have very good connections with the Japanese and we are the first choice for investment in the AEC group.
What is your future outlook for industrial production in Thailand?
KUNANANTAKUL: I think they will still need more land. Customers are still looking for more places to build factories so we need to find more land to develop. We are in the process of developing more land to prepare for the customerâ€™s needs. Customers are still going to be coming to Thailand in the future.
What new projects are you currently working on?
KUNANANTAKUL: Right now we have a new project in Bangkok in the Banpu area, itâ€™s not far from downtown Bangkok, itâ€™s about 30 minutes from town. We call this project â€œSELPâ€ or Siam Eastern Logistics Park. It is about 15 to 20km to Suvarnabhumi Airport. There, we have a brand new warehouse, a warehousing system, a training facility, a school, and more. This is a new concept for a logistics park, it is not only a warehouse. We have a warehouse and a tourist area very close together and this is a very new concept. Right now in Thailand we are B2B, but this will enable us to move into a B2C role.
If you go to Japan you can see many companies that operate this way, both B2B and B2C, so this is a new project for us. Also, we will have a training center for maritime and logistic training. The warehouse itself is even a new concept because it is 2 floors. There is the regular floor and there is another facility underground. This is very convenient because it is one of the facilities that is closest to the port in Bangkok.