Ford Motor Co. reportedly will move its Asia/Pacific and Africa headquarters from Thailand to China.

Shanghai is likely to become the base for Ford’s operations, although a final decision has not been made, The Detroit News says.

Thailand will continue to be Ford’s strategic headquarters for Association of Southeast Asian Nations activities, a Ford spokeswoman tells the newspaper.

Ford’s move to China reflects the growing importance of the country to the auto maker and to the industry overall, having become the world’s No.2 new-vehicle market, behind the U.S., in 2008.

Ford follows a similar migration by General Motors Corp. five years ago, which relocated its operations from Singapore to Shanghai. GM previously had its regional headquarters in Hong Kong, but left for Singapore when control of Hong Kong passed from Britain to China in 1997.