The Thai government is considering raising its electric vehicle (EV) production target and plans to hold discussions with local vehicle manufacturers over the next month, according to local reports.

The government said it wants the industry to meet the accelerating shift in global demand towards zero-emission vehicles, as countries around the world step up measures to meet their carbon emissions reduction commitments.

The Thai National Electric Vehicle Policy Committee is considering requiring EV production to account for at least 50% of total output by 2030, up from a previous target of 30%.

The local vehicle industry is generally in favour of the revised EV production target, according to the reports, which will help it remain in line with global trends. Manufacturers are calling on state agencies and power companies to expand local EV recharging networks to help drive local demand.

Last month the Thai government announced revised incentives for investments in electric and hybrid vehicle production, as it looks to establish the country as the main zero-emissions production hub in South-east Asia.

The Thai government’s permanent secretary for energy, KulitSombatsiri, said in a statement “the government will discuss the new EV target with state agencies and car manufacturers within this month. Global car companies have asked the government whether the new target is possible”.

Overall vehicle production in the country plunged by over 29% to 1.42 million units in 2020 from just over two million units in the previous year, while exports were down by over 30% at 735,842 units.

Domestic sales fell by over 21% to 792,146 units last year from 1,007,552 units in 2019. The Electric Vehicle Association of Thailand said the number of registered vehicles with electrified powertrains in Thailand currently stands at around 100,000 units.