Thailand’s capital Bangkok today joined the list of candidate cities bidding to host the new FIA Formula E Championship. The announcement came during a special event held to demonstrate the innovation of racing technology in Thailand, attended by the Pol.Maj.Gen Lattasanya Piansomparn, Advisor to the Minister of Energy, Mr. Chiruit Israngkun Na Ayuthaya, Director-Domestic MICE, Thailand Convention & Exhibition Bureau, and Alejandro Agag, CEO of Championship promoter Formula E Holdings (FEH).
More than 200 guests attended the reception, also held in honour of His Majesty the King’s 86th birthday, hosted on the eighth floor of the ZEN Shopping Mall by leading Thai DJ and model Nattaseat Poonsupmanee. Taking centre stage at the ceremony was the fully-electric Formula E car making its first ever appearance in Asia and introduced with a visually-stunning VDO presentation.
Earlier this year, FEH presented the FIA with a preliminary list of eight cities – London, Rome, Los Angeles, Miami, Beijing, Putrajaya, Buenos Aires and Rio de Janeiro – all selected to host races for the inaugural season. A total of 10 races are scheduled for 2014 with Bangkok adding its name to the list of candidate cities for the remaining two slots.
Since launching in August 2012, FEH has received formal letters of interest from 23 cities across five continents with the final calendar being presented to the FIA for its approval at the September 2013 World Motor Sport Council.
“We are delighted to be here in Bangkok today and are very thankful to the Thai authorities for their enthusiastic welcome,” said Alejandro Agag. “We have been very impressed with Thailand’s commitment to cleaner energy and sustainable motoring, as well as their rising motorsport programme, and a Formula E race through this amazing city would provide a great spectacle together with a considerable boost to tourism.”
Pol.Maj.Gen Lattasanya Piansomparn said: “In 2012, total production, local sales, and exports of cars, reached new highs, close to 2.5 million cars and breaking a record that had stood for more than 50 years. The heavily promoted Thai car industry was on the way to becoming one of the top 10 car producers in the world. The government policy is to force Thailand as the ASEAN hub of automotive production and announce a new master plan for the automotive industry from 2012 to 2016, formulating development strategies for sustainable growth of the industry, especially the global trends focusing on clean energy.
“This reflects the vision of Thailand’s automotive industry and if Thailand is one of the cities’ selected to host the FIA Formula E Championship, it will create a great opportunity for the future automotive industry cooperation and Formula E production base in Thailand. Formula E now is the latest innovation and technology of automotive industry. The future automotive trend is electric energy. Moreover, the best benefits for Thailand are; the cutting edge of technology, increased employment opportunities and an increase in labour skills at an international standard.”
Mr. Chiruit Israngkun Na Ayuthaya added: “The FIA Formula E Championship in Bangkok city will help economic growth (GDP) and generate tourism revenue for the country, especially MICE industry and motor sports economic activities.”
Formula E is a new FIA championship that brings electric vehicle racing to the people, as city centres around the world play host to an electric energy World Championship designed to promote interest and investment in electric vehicles and sustainable motoring.