whether individuals or juristic entities (companies,
partnerships, etc.), who invest and carry out business
in Thailand, may be restricted by the "Alien Business
Act 1999". This legislation came into force on
December 4, 1999. The Act classifies businesses into
3 categories. Generally, Category A businesses are closed
to aliens for special reasons, while Categories B and
C businesses are opened to aliens subject to conditions.
There are remaining a number of businesses, including
most manufacturing businesses, which do not fall within
any of these three categories and are opened for investments
Apart from the above, the 1996 Treaty of Amity and Economic
Relations between Thailand and the USA provides an exemption
from the restrictions in the Alien Business Act for
US nationals and corporations for most (but not all)
is also the possibility of exemption under certain treaties
to which Thailand is a party, as well as for businesses
approved by the BOI.
on Aliens Doing Business in Thailand
There is no general licensing requirement for foreign
investors in Thailand. Restrictions on the percentage
of alien ownership of commercial banks, finance companies,
commercial fishing, aircraft, commercial transportation,
commodity export, mining and other enterprises exist
under various laws, Cabinet policies, trade association
regulations, etc. In connection with seeking promotion
by the Board of Investment, Thai participation requirements
will generally be prescribed.
The most important law governing majority alien-owned
businesses in Thailand is the Alien Business Law, which
controls three broad categories of businesses. Generally,
businesses in category A are closed to aliens, while
businesses in categories B and C are open to aliens
under some conditions. There remain a number of businesses,
including most manufacturing businesses, which do not
fall within any of the three categories and are open
for investment by aliens.
1996 Treaty of Amity and Economic Relations between
Thailand and the USA provides an exemption from the
restrictions of the Alien Business Law for US nationals
and corporations for most (but not all) controlled businesses.
means a natural person and juristic person without Thai
nationality, including a company with half or more than
half of its shares held by aliens, or a company with
half or more than half of its shareholders being aliens.
new Act prescribes 42 restricted businesses in 3 categories