Thailand’s construction sector is projected to have an optimistic outlook despite a slowing economy in recent years. In 2015, the Thai government allocated funds in transportation, leading to a substantial increase in infrastructure investment. The development of Bangkok’s subway lines and the Eastern Economic Corridor, combined with a growing tourism industry, are driving greater opportunities in residential, commercial and industrial segments.
Solidiance’s latest white paper titled “Will Thailand 2.0 Revive the Construction Industry?” highlights the current trends and forecasts the future outlook for all three segments in Thailand’s construction sector, aimed at providing extensive insights industry players and property developers must consider before investing in the market.
Overview of Thailand’s construction sector
Thailand’s construction market is estimated to reach up to USD 41.4 billion by 2016, with about USD 17.9 billion coming from private investments and USD 23.4 billion from the public sector, which also includes the infrastructure segment.
At present, Thailand’s construction market is driven by public investments in infrastructure as government spending continues to focus its efforts in developing a robust transportation system.
Between 2012 and 2014, the overall number of buildings rose with an average increase of 1.4% per year. However, the overall area built decreased by an average of 2.2% per year mainly due to a reduction of the average size of condominiums and industrial buildings in the country.
Current trends and future outlook in Thailand’s construction sector
- Residential: Market shift from low housing demand in Bangkok
New residential construction projects, and especially condominiums, are mainly concentrated in Bangkok and vicinities. With public transportation lines currently under construction, Bangkok's city center is gradually expanding.
Expansion in the condominium market is now seen in different vicinities outside of Bangkok, while growth is slowing down in the capital.
- Commercial: Strengthening Thailand’s position as ASEAN’s shopping hub
The growth of commercial building market is driven by a higher demand for restaurants and shopping malls to accommodate the rising influx of tourists from China and ASEAN coming into the country. In order to strengthen Thailand’s position as a regional shopping hub, Thai shopping mall developers plan to invest more than USD 2.83 billion over the next three years to expand and open new stores.
- Industrial: New zones, new growth
New industrial construction are mostly observed in Special Economic Zones (SEZ) as the government hopes to make Thailand ASEAN’s leading economic zone in selected industries. In response to this, the new S-curve industrial strategy initiated by the government – which focuses on Robotics, Aviation and Logistics, Biofuels and Bio-chemicals, Digital, and Medical industries – are able to gain BOI privileges and incentive schemes.
The government has also approved the development of the Eastern Economic Corridor, which concentrates on construction of transport infrastructure, sea, and rail. This move will further support Thailand’s position as a major economic zone in ASEAN.
Solidiance is a corporate strategy consulting firm focused on Asia. We advise CEOs on make-or break deals, define new business models and accelerate Asia growth. Solidiance's expertise is focused on the industrial, clean tech, technology and healthcare sectors with 12 offices in Asia: Abu Dhabi, Bangkok, Beijing, Beirut, Ho Chi Minh City, Jakarta, Kuala Lumpur, Manila, New Delhi, Yangon, Shanghai, Singapore (HQ), as well as a Client Liaison office in Germany.
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