Mining equipment manufacturer Caterpillar is planning to open a manufacturing facility in Thailand this year, with production scheduled to begin in late 2012.

The 60,000m2 facility will be located in Hemaraj Rayong Industrial Land in Rayong province.

The facility will produce underground mining articulated trucks and loaders, which can be used for hard-rock underground mining applications.

Caterpillar vice-president Chris Curfman said the facility will increase the capacity for its existing range of underground mining machinery.