Thailand is ready to be Asean's future energy and mobility hub, as part of the global trend to improve sustainability through collaboration with countries worldwide, a senior Thai official said.
Veerapat Kiatfuengfoo, deputy permanent secretary at the Energy Ministry, revealed this ambitious objective during his speech at the opening ceremony on Wednesday of 'Future Energy Asia and Future Mobility Asia Exhibition and Summit 2023'.
He emphasised that green and clean energy with no negative environmental impact is the necessary path, as many countries around the world, including Thailand, have already committed to achieving carbon neutrality and net zero emissions by 2050.
There are many things that must be done in order to achieve the goal of sustainability, he said, before adding that the kingdom would like to serve as the centre of the Southeast Asia region, connecting and exchanging green innovation technology and energy solutions with the rest of the world.
Meanwhile, Thailand intends to develop a new growth engine to power the economy in the long run.
Thailand already has at least three advantages to become a regional hub of clean energy and mobility, according to Pisut Painmanakul, secretary to Thailand's Minister of Energy.
The first is that Thailand's carbon emissions, in comparison with its neighbours, are relatively low. This demonstrates that the country has already taken carbon emissions seriously and introduced steps to reduce greenhouse gases as much as possible.
Second, Thailand has already provided a variety of energy sources during the transition period towards completely clean and green sustainability. He stated that this factor would ensure the country has enough energy to use and move the country forward.
Third, there is a high demand for clean and green energy in the country. He pointed out that Thailand is now Asia's second-largest market for electric vehicles (EVs), behind China. This demand makes Thailand very appealing to foreign investors.
All three benefits, according to Pisut, increase Thailand's competitiveness.
He believes that the country must now continue to develop its own technology and innovation in order to provide energy security and resilience.
Veerapat and Pisut both agreed that Thailand cannot achieve sustainability on its own. The country's alliances must work together closely and mutually.
They said that the "Future Energy Asia and Future Mobility Asia Exhibition and Summit" would serve as a platform for such collaboration.
Future Energy Asia will address topics from across the integrated energy value chain, including the enormous potential of alternative fuels such as renewables, hydrogen, and LNG, the careful balance between energy security and larger net zero goals, and modernising transmission and distribution grids.
The events will help drive innovations that will forge new pathways in the transition to net zero and facilitate the building of partnerships that will bring the industry closer to making clean energy accessible, secure, and affordable for all.
Meanwhile, "Future Mobility Asia" will present concepts, solutions, technologies, and innovations for future clean mobility.
The event serves as a central gathering place for original equipment manufacturers (OEMs), mobility innovators, aftermarket suppliers, and technology solution providers to meet, network, and drive forward Asia's mobility transition and transformation.
The president of dmg events, Christopher Hudson, said "Future Energy Asia" would provide an essential platform for these ambitious plans to take root in Asia and around the world by showcasing the latest innovations and solutions, transforming the energy sector and generating thought leadership that would determine the direction of the industry.
The latest editions of "Future Energy Asia and Future Mobility Asia" come at a critical juncture for the industry and the region. Southeast Asia as a whole will be the world's fourth-largest economy by 2030, with energy demand expected to triple between 2013 and 2040.
More than 18,000 visitors from over 70 countries will gather in Bangkok from May 17-19 to continue critical dialogue about Asia's contributions to the global energy transition and to shine a spotlight on the region's decarbonisation efforts.