USA – Thai Amity Treaty
The treaty of amity and economic relations between the Kingdom of Thailand and the United States of America (USA), which may be downloaded here, was signed on May 29, 1966 to give special rights to citizens of both nations to invest in each others countries. The treaty was following several activities Thailand and the United States of America (USA) were conducting together during the 1950’s and 1960’s, such as joint initiatives in United Nations (UN) activities and several bilateral agreements. The treaty allows American citizens to gain majority foreign ownership in Thai companies (and vice versa) subject to the following conditions:
The business activity shall not be in:
- Fiduciary functions
- Banking involving depository functions
- Land Ownership, Exploitation of land or other natural resources
- Domestic trade in indigenous agricultural products
In addition, the company must have at least 50% directors of American citizenship. The minimum capital requirement for Thai Amity treaty companies are 3 million Thai Baht.
The procedure to enjoy the promotions of the amity treaty are as follows:
1. Registration of a Thai limited company, partnership or representative office.
The registration of a Thai entity is the first step to enjoy the promotions of the amity treaty. Please refer to the article about company setup for more detailed information.
2. Obtain certification from the US Commercial Service agency of the United States embassy in Bangkok
The second step to obtain the benefits under the United States (US) amity treaty is to obtain a certification from the US Commercial Service agency of the United States embassy in Bangkok stating that the applying business organization is managed and owned by US citizens. The process is in detail described the American embassy and can be downloaded here. The form that needs to be submitted to the US commercial service agency can be downloaded here.
3. Application to the Commercial Registration Department
The final step to obtain majority foreign ownership under the amity treaty is to register the company with the certification from the US Commercial Service agency at the Commercial Registration Department of the Thai Ministry of Commerce.
The documents that are required for this application are:
- Certificate from the Commercial Service Agency of the US embassy in Bangkok
- Articles of Incorporation
- Bylaws of the Company
- Company name
- Company registration number and date of registration
- Address of registered office
- Jurisdiction under which the corporation is registered
- Personal particulars of each director and number of shares hold of the company
- Registered capital of the company
- Paid up capital
- Number of shares and value per share
- Personal particulars of each shareholder and number of shares hold
The process usually takes between 4 and 6 weeks.
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