Bangkok Port plan makes the most of its assets
Source: Editorial Staff
Four sites in the Klongtoey precinct have been earmarked for development zones.
Phase I of the plan to develop 212 rai of land for port use beyond the Customs Department’s fence will be in place during 2010.
According to Mr. Pichade Mankong, PAT Assistant Director General – Business Administration, the Port Authority’s business plan for 2005-2009 has been revamped to improve asset management and to solve long-standing problems, particularly with respect to land adjoining the Customs Department fence at Bangkok Port. This area has several small plots which are currently used for various purposes not related to port activities and hence economically inefficient.
Under the new asset management strategy, land adjoining the fence will be divided into four development zones and reserved for port activities and related businesses, i.e., logistics and product distribution, real estate, office buildings, convention and exhibition center, training center and a commercial complex.
“Our objective is not profit maximization but to ensure optimal utilization of land resources that will accommodate and support port-related activities as well as the national policy to promote Bangkok as a tourism hub,” affirmed Mr. Pichate.
New zones set for development
To support port-related activities and ensure optimal resource utilization, the four zones will be made up of the following:
Zone 1: this 17-rai vacant plot adjoining the PAT office building us currently a parking area for trucks. It will be developed immediately into a Maritime Business Centre to accommodate shipping agents, freight forwarders, a Maritime Training Centre, an Educational and Exhibition Center, a Business Center catering to banks and financial institutions, and an Integrated IT/ EDI Document Center.
Zone 2 is where Tavich Building, Medical and Health Offices are now situated. It measures 54 rai and can be developed when existing lease agreements expire. Easily accessible to various transportation routes including Chalermnakorn Expressway, Bangkok Port, Rama IV and Sukumvit Roads, this zone is suitable for high-rise logistics center, cargo consolidation/ distribution center, tax free zone, general/ bonded warehouses, and a Truck Terminal.
Zone 3 comprises 126 rai of land which starts at the Sunthornkosa-Rama IV intersection where commercial buildings are currently located and ends at public bus route No. 4 (excluding Klongtoey market).
Zone 4 includes a 15-rai vacant plot and warehouse and transshipment depot operated by Thai Packaging Material Co., Ltd. When the lease expires this year, this area will house a modern office building and other relevant activities.
Phase I coming soon
The new zoning plan has been approved in principle but, because the development plan for each zone will cost more than 1,000 million baht, PAT has to comply with the Private Sector Participation in Public Sector Enterprises Act B.E. 2535. A detailed project study and analysis being undertaken by the Economics Faculty, Chulalongkorn University, will be submitted to the PAT Board of Directors before the end of February. Once approved, the proposal will be presented to the Ministry of Transportation and the Ministry of Finance prior to seeking Cabinet approval to implement the project. In keeping with the government’s plan to accelerate asset development, the Ministry of Finance is expected to approve the project before the end of this year.
Assuming that various procedures are completed according to set schedules, private enterprises will be able to develop the plots in zones 1 and 4 immediately. Zone 2 will be ready in 2010 when commercial buildings, medical and sanitation offices are expected to be relocated. Development plans for Zone 3, which currently houses a large community and commercial buildings, will have to await occupants’ consent to relocate.
As for the Klongtoey fresh market located in Zone 3, PAT has signed a 10-year concession with Legal Professional Co., Ltd. to build and manage a modern market that complies with sanitation and environmental standards.
As well as revamping PAT’s asset management plan, development of the site will help stimulate investment and support trade expansion while helping to lower logistics costs for local importers and exporters.