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Plans for boat building cluster

Plans for boat building cluster

PHUKET BUSINESS: The International Maritime College in Si Racha, Chonburi Province, is promoting the development of a cluster of small and medium business enterprises (SME) to join forces to develop the boat-building and repair industry for pleasure craft in Phuket.

Saturday 6 August 2011, 06:59AM

Teaching staff from the college held a morning seminar hoping to form a focus group of SMEs last Friday at the Royal Phuket City Hotel in Phuket Town. About 100 participants and media attended.

Phuket Vice-Governor Somkiet Sangkaosutthirak opened the talks, saying the island was the logical place to develop such a local boat-building industry to compete with other countries, and would create more employment.

Dr Preecha Sitthikornkai, an expert in business cluster formation, outlined the benefits of the proposed boat-building cluster, which will comprise both private enterprise companies and government agencies, all working together to reduce the costs of materials, labour and production.

He said at present such clustering only exists in ceramic production and the making of motorcycles in Thailand.

Dr Preecha has travelled to Italy, Turkey and Croatia to study successful models of boat-building clusters.

Project leader Dr Yodchai Tiaple, an engineer and lecturer at the college, said the working group should aim to recruit some 30 SMEs to get this joint effort rolling. The seminar was collecting ideas, expressions of interest and membership from participants.

For more information, visit thailandboatbuildingcluster.com, or email: thailandboatbuildingcluster@hotmail.com

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