In a notable rendezvous, Tesla’s visionary CEO, Elon Musk, sat down with Thailand’s Prime Minister, Srettha Thavisin, in the vibrant heart of New York City. The rendezvous, confirmed by Prime Minister Thavisin himself, was an engaging exchange of ideas that spanned the realm of Tesla, SpaceX, and Starlink, all three of which are under Musk’s influential stewardship.
Prime Minister Thavisin shared his thoughts on Twitter, saying, “Met with @elonmusk and team during my trip to #UNGA in New York. We had a good conversation on @Tesla, @SpaceX, and @Starlink technology. I am impressed with the advance the group has made for humanity, and we share a common view of the future for a cleaner world. We look forward to further discussions. Look forward to more inspirational successes of the #EV and #SpaceExploration breakthrough – for not only Thais but also the global community.”
Tesla’s footprint in Thailand dates back to the previous year when it introduced the Model 3 and Model Y to the Thai market, prompting a surge in reservations. These Tesla vehicles destined for Thai roads are assembled at the renowned Gigafactory Shanghai in China, a key contributor to Tesla’s overall production capacity.
The first units graced Thai streets in February of the current year, signifying an expansion of Tesla’s influence across Asia. Notably, in early 2020, Thailand enlisted Model 3 vehicles for its National Police Force, and these electric cruisers will continue to serve law enforcement duties until 2025.
While Tesla has been in dialogue with several nations regarding the establishment of new automotive manufacturing plants, Thailand’s name does not currently appear on the list. Musk’s affinity for engaging with world leaders holds significance, as such meetings with Prime Ministers, Presidents, and governmental dignitaries foster collaborative thinking to enhance sustainability.
The burgeoning popularity of electric vehicles (EVs) in Southeast Asia is undeniable, as illustrated in a recent Reuters report. In Q2 2023, electric vehicles accounted for 6.4 percent of passenger car sales, a notable leap from the 3.8 percent recorded in Q1. Thailand takes the lead in this surge, constituting approximately 50 percent of these electric vehicle sales. Behind Thailand, Vietnam and Indonesia follow closely, with BYD emerging as the region’s most favored automaker.