FACTBOX-Foreign firms maintain Thai investment plans
BANGKOK, April 21
BANGKOK, April 21 (Reuters) - Despite political turmoil in Bangkok, big foreign manufacturers -- most of them with plants well away from the capital -- are maintaining their investment policies and say business in Thailand is carrying on as normal.
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Following are quotes and investment details of some foreign companies:
GENERAL MOTORS [GM.UL]
"In spite of the political climate, GM Thailand does not currently have any plans to review its investments in Thailand," said Sasinan Allmand, public relations director for Thailand at the Thai unit of General Motors.
"GMTH has confidence that the situation will return to normal soon, and wishes all parties can develop solutions that will work for the betterment of all Thai people and the Thai economy." In January, GM announced plans to spend 15 billion baht ($467 million) in Thailand over the next two years, reviving plans for a new diesel-engine plant and the retooling of existing production lines. Its plant is in the eastern province of Rayong. FORD MOTOR (F.N)
"There is no change to our business plans in Thailand," said Neal McCarthy, Ford's corporate communications director for Asia Pacific and Africa.
In July 2009, Ford launched a $500 million passenger car plant in Thailand in a joint venture with Japan's Mazda (7261.T). This plant is also located in Rayong.
Thailand is one of three Asian countries where Ford has made major investments in recent years. The others are China and India.
HONDA MOTOR CO (7267.T)
"Despite the political problems, Honda is still confident in Thailand because we have invested here for 45 or 46 years," executive adviser Adisak Rohitasune said.
"Our sales are going well. If the political problem is prolonged, it may affect domestic sales," Adisak said, adding Honda's exports remained good due to the global economic recovery.
The main export markets are in Asia and Australia, where consumer confidence remained good, he said.
"Chevron is continuing normal business and is not experiencing any disruptions to its operations. We are committed to supplying energy to the people of Thailand in a safe and reliable manner," said Gareth Johnstone, Asia Pacific media adviser for Chevron International Pte. Ltd.
"Telenor Group is an industrial telecom player with a long-term view on our commitment to Thailand. The recent political development in Thailand does not affect our investment policy for this market," Sigve Brekke, head of Telenor Asia, said.
Telenor controls Total Access Communication DTAC.BK (TACC.SI), which operates Thailand's second-largest mobile phone network.
SEAGATE TECHNOLOGY (STX.O)
"We have no change in our investment policy in Thailand and business goes on as normal," said a senior communication official at the Thai unit of the world's largest maker of disk drives.
MITSUBISHI MOTORS (7211.T)
Mitsubishi Motors (Thailand) and Mitsubishi Motors Corp are going ahead with an 8 billion baht ($249 million) "green car" investment project, according to a statement from Thailand's Board of Investment.
The company aims to start production before September 2011 and to launch the first fuel-efficient "eco car" in Thailand by the beginning of 2012. ($1=32.15 Baht) (Reporting by Khettiya Jittapong, Ploy Ten Kate and Pisit Changplayngam; Editing by Alan Raybould)
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