Mazda has announced that it will build a transmission plant in the Chonburi province of Thailand, which will have an annual production capacity of around 400,000 units.
An investment worth ¥26 billion (over P11 billion), the plant is being established by Mazda as its response to the "increasing demand for models featuring Skyactiv and to strengthen its global production footprint."
Located approximately 5km north of Mazda's AutoAlliance Thailand (AAT) joint-venture production facility, the plant is scheduled to be operational by March 2016 and will supply Skyactiv-Drive automatic transmissions for Skyactiv models produced at AAT and other vehicle production facilities of the Japanese carmaker around the world.
"The Nakanoseki district of Hofu Plant will remain the chief production facility for transmissions, but we have decided to establish a second major transmission plant in Thailand's Chonburi Province," said Mazda representative director, board chairman, president and chief executive Takashi Yamanouchi. "This will enable Mazda to cope with the rapidly increasing demand for Skyactiv models and establish a production system capable of responding to the changing demands of our customers in a flexible and timely manner. We will make use of the knowledge and experience gained through AAT to ensure the success of the new plant in cooperation with the people of Thailand."
Is this another blow to the Philippine automotive parts manufacturing industry? Well, at least one Japanese carmaker still believes in the capabilities of our local manpower.