SAIC Motor-CP Company, the Thai joint venture between China's SAIC Motor and the local Charoen Pokphand Group, plans to go ahead with a second plant in Thailand, according to local reports quoting company sources.

SAIC Motor CEO Chen Zhixin was quoted as saying construction of a new plant is set to go ahead on the 700,000 sq m site land it previously acquired in the Hemaraj Eastern Seaboard Industrial Estate in Chonburi province.

Zhixin confirmed the new facility would include body welding and painting operations and final assembly for MG vehicles and will cost some THB30-40bn (US$860m-1.1bn). The plant would become SAIC's main global production hub for right hand drive vehicles and will have an eventual annual production capacity of 300,000 units.

SAIC Motor owns 51% of the joint venture company, which has operated a 50,000 unit/year assembly facility in the country since June 2014.

SAIC has struggled to gain significant traction in the Thai market so far with total vehicle sales just short of 3,800 units last year – according to industry sources.