Hanoi (VNA) – Thailand’s PTT Oil and Retail Business (PTTOR) has planned to launch thousands of coffee shops at home and abroad, along with other non-oil businesses, as global auto and fuel players gear up for a near future dominated by electric car growth.

PTTOR's plan to invest 74 billion baht (2.39 billion USD) over five years to expand will be heavily skewed toward non-oil operations, which last year carried an operating profit margin of nearly 20 percent.

"Charging EVs takes about 20 minutes, while you wait you can have a meal, buy things in the service station," PTTOR leader was quoted by Reuters as saying.

The firm aims to to expand that to 5,200 in the next five years.

PTTOR’s network now stands at 2,000 gas stations across Thailand: it plans to add another 500 by 2025, and to rapidly ramp up the number that are equipped with EV charging points, to 300 by 2022 from just 30 currently. That surge will come as the Thai government seeks to implement plans to have 1.05 million EVs on the road by 2025, up from current levels of about 200,000./.