* Thailand targeting aerospace as growth sector
* Saab and Amata will work to define projects (Recasts, updates with Saab statement)
BANGKOK, Oct 6 (Reuters) - Thailand’s Amata Corporation Pcl said it expected to tap growing aviation demand in the region after signing a memorandum of understanding with Sweden’s Saab AB to collaborate on the development of aerospace and “smart city” precincts in the eastern province of Chonburi.
The aerospace sector is among targeted industries that Thailand wants to promote as a new engine of growth and as it strives to become an aviation hub in Asia.
“At present, the air transport industry is booming... and this joint venture is to meet growth in the aviation industry,” Vikrom Kromadit, chief executive officer of Amata, Thailand’s biggest industrial developer, told reporters on Thursday.
He said Amata and Saab were expected to jointly build an aerospace parts plant and a pilot training centre next year.
A Saab spokesman on Friday said there were no specific projects defined in the memorandum of understanding.
“Saab and Amata will now work together to define the details of future projects,” the spokesman said. “This could include work on communications, safety and security systems for police and emergency services, traffic management (air/sea/ports/harbours), and training and simulation.”
Saab develops products, services and solutions for the aerospace, defence and civil security markets worldwide. It opened its Thai headquarters in Bangkok in 1998. ($1 = 33.34 baht) (Reporting by Wirat Buranakanokthanasan; Additional reporting by Jamie Freed; Writing by Orathai Sriring; Editing by Christopher Cushing)