U.S. Thai Treaty of Amity
The “Treaty of Amity and Economic Relations Between the Kingdom of Thailand and the United States of America” had been signed in 1833 and amended in 1966/1968. The U.S. Thai Treaty of Amity allows for U.S. citizens and businesses incorporated in the US, to maintain a majority shareholding or to wholly own a company in Thailand, and to engage in business on the same basis as would a Thai national. Therefore, U.S. owned companies are exempt from most of the restrictions on foreign investment imposed by the FBA Foreign Business Act.
American companies receive national treatment to engage in business on the same basis as Thai companies.
The Thai U.S.Treaty of Amity does not privilege the following business activities:
- Owning land
- Engaging in inland transportation and communication industries
- Engaging in fiduciary functions
- Engaging in banking involving depository functions
- Engaging in domestic trade in indigenous agricultural products
- Exploiting land or other natural resources.
A U.S. citizen needs to apply for work permits and visa without privileged status.
The process to obtain protection under the U.S. Thai Treaty of Amity is rather straight-forwarded. In a first step a company has to be set-up which fulfills the legal requirements under the treaty. It is legitim to restructure an aged company to fall into the category of a treaty company. As a second step an application has to be filed with the U.S. Embassy (Commercial Counselor) in Bangkok. Based on the confirmation letter of the U.S. Embassy a Foreign Business Certificate has be applied from the Ministry of Commerce.
After accomplishing these three steps, the “treaty company” needs no further renewal of its status. The benefits under the treaty apply as long as no structural change occurs which infringes the treaty conditions.
The law firm has extensive experiences to set-up a U.S. Thai Treaty of Amity company and regularly assists U.S. clients during the whole application process.