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The cluster role in the development of the Thai car industry

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  • Yveline Lecler

Abstract

The Thai automotive industry first developed around Bangkok where Japanese car-makers were the first to open plants. During the 1980s, car-makers had to increase their local purchasing to cope with government local content policies. This led to a broader penetration of Japanese parts-makers who also tended to locate their plants close to their affiliated customer. In the 1990s, however, some changes appeared: firstly, the increasing market and the expectation of further growth pushed Japanese car-makers to establish new plants; secondly, the need to cut costs because of increased competition resulted in a new penetration of Japanese parts-makers and subcontractors; thirdly, the excessive concentration around Bangkok pushed the government to implement new policies to develop and industrialize peripheral areas by investing in infrastructures and offering incentives. Additional clusters appeared in several new industrializing areas outside the Bangkok suburb, mainly on the eastern seaboard, with Japanese car and parts-makers opening their new plants in these areas, and with Ford and GM, followed by American parts-makers, also choosing such locations. The article presents these changes in the clustering dynamics in relation to firms' strategies and public policies, discussing these issues within the framework of the role of the Thai automobile industry in South-East Asia (ASEAN). Copyright Joint Editors and Blackwell Publishers Ltd 2002.

Suggested Citation

  • Yveline Lecler, 2002. "The cluster role in the development of the Thai car industry," International Journal of Urban and Regional Research, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 26(4), pages 799-814, December.
  • Handle: RePEc:bla:ijurrs:v:26:y:2002:i:4:p:799-814
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    1. Vincent Frigant, 2002. "Geographical proximity and supplying relationships in modular production," International Journal of Urban and Regional Research, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 26(4), pages 742-755, December.
    2. Reinhardt, Nola, 2000. "Back to Basics in Malaysia and Thailand: The Role of Resource-Based Exports in Their Export-Led Growth," World Development, Elsevier, vol. 28(1), pages 57-77, January.
    3. André Rodríguez-Pose, 2001. "Strategies of Waste: Bidding Wars in the Brazilian Automobile Sector," International Journal of Urban and Regional Research, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 25(1), pages 134-154, March.
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    Cited by:

    1. Hosono, Akio, 2013. "Industrial Strategy And Economic Transformation:," Working Papers 1002, JICA Research Institute.
    2. Yannick Lung, 2004. "The changing geography of the European automobile system," International Journal of Automotive Technology and Management, Inderscience Enterprises Ltd, vol. 4(2/3), pages 137-165.
    3. Manchin, Miriam & Pelkmans-Balaoing, Annette O., 2008. "Clothes without an Emperor: Analysis of the preferential tariffs in ASEAN," Journal of Asian Economics, Elsevier, vol. 19(3), pages 213-223, June.
    4. Toni Ahlqvist, 2014. "Building Innovation Excellence of World Class: The Cluster as an Instrument of Spatial Governance in the European Union," International Journal of Urban and Regional Research, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 38(5), pages 1712-1731, September.
    5. Vincent FRIGANT & Martin ZUMPE, 2014. "Are automotive Global Production Networks becoming more global? Comparison of regional and global integration processes based on auto parts trade data," Cahiers du GREThA 2014-09, Groupe de Recherche en Economie Théorique et Appliquée.
    6. Fujita, Mai, 2013. "The Japanese and Chinese models of industrial organisation : fighting for supremacy in the Vietnamese motorcycle industry," IDE Discussion Papers 420, Institute of Developing Economies, Japan External Trade Organization(JETRO).

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