Japan-Thai joint venture to boost packaging production near Bangkok

BANGKOK, NNA - A Japan-Thailand packaging manufacturing joint venture has opened a plant near Bangkok to meet growing demand from the food industry in the Southeast Asian country.

T.A.K. Packaging Co., the local venture between Japanese packaging producer Kanaoka Co. and TPBI Public Co., Thailand's leading plastic bag maker, says it started the new factory's operation last week to double annual production capacity to 200 million meters in two years.

Investing over 500 million baht ($15 million), the new factory will help increase T.A.K.'s output capacity from the current 100 million meters per year to 150 million meters by next year, said Somsak Borrisuttanakul, CEO of TPBI.

The joint venture aims to raise the annual capacity to 250 million meters in five years to meet rising demand from food and consumer product makers, Somsak said, adding that the food industry in Thailand is growing around 5 percent to 10 percent annually.

T.A.K., established in 2011 in Nakhon Pathom Province, west of the capital, is owned about 62 percent by TPBI, around 35 percent by Kanaoka and the remainder by a Japanese group conducting trade between the two countries, according to TPBI.

Kanaoka helps TPBI in sales to Japanese customers while providing technical expertise at the Thai unit.

Exporting its products mainly to Australia and Japan, TPBI aims to expand its export market to Europe and the United States, said Somsak. TPBI also has a factory in Myanmar and plans to increase production there.

He estimates that when the output capacity at the joint venture reaches around 200 million meters per year, packaging sales will account for 20 percent of TPBI's overall revenue, up from the current 14 percent to 15 percent. (NNA/Kyodo)