Located strategically at the heart of ASEAN, Thailand is rapidly becoming an investment hub for many foreign entrepreneurs inside and outside the Asian Pacific region. The country’s stable economy and strong export base continue to flourish over the past few years. The launch of the Board of Investment incentivized program makes it much easier for foreign investors to run a business in Thailand.
Apart from facilitating company registration in Thailand for foreign business owners, the Board of Investment helps clear the path for safe foreign investments and the foundation of government-supported companies in the country. This article guides you through the definition of the Thailand Board of Investment and how to apply for BOI promotion.
What is the Thailand Board of Investment?
The Thailand Board of Investment (BOI), also known as the Office of the Board of Investment, is a government organization that seeks to encourage foreign investment in the country. BOI-certified companies in Thailand can enjoy a wide range of tax and ownership incentives, including major tax waivers, multiple work visas without having to hire four Thai employees for each foreign employee, 100% foreign ownership, and the right of foreign companies to own property in the country.
A business needs to satisfy the following requirements to qualify for BOI application:
- Possess a capital investment of at least THB 1,000,000
- Have a minimum of three registered shareholders as promoters
- Must be a registered company in Thailand
- Apply in one of the eligible industries
How to apply for investment promotion?
Here are the essential steps that businesses need to complete when applying for BOI promotion.
Step 1: Filling out necessary forms
Businesses need to fill out the forms for their companies’ business category. They can obtain the forms from BOI headquarters in Bangkok or through its e-investment platform. The forms consist of about eight to ten pages. Questions asked inside the forms include the company’s status, product development, shareholders, investment strategy, and targeted clients.
Generally, the BOI requires the following details:
- The registered capital’s total amount and a strategy on how the company will leverage the investment in its business
- Information about the company’s project, including the process involved and the software or equipment types it will use
- The number of both foreign and Thai employees the company is planning to hire and their estimated annual salaries. In certain cases, the BOI offers a minimum wage for key personnel each year
- A training blueprint for Thai workers, detailing training courses or a technology transfer plan
- Information on the management team, such as their qualifications and skills
- The business’s estimated earnings and expenses for the initial three years of operation
Companies need to carefully fill out each part of the form to increase their chances of getting approved and avoid the hassle of visiting the BOI or resubmitting the forms online repeatedly.
Step 2: Schedule an appointment for an interview
After the submission of forms, business owners need to schedule an interview with the BOI within ten working days. The business owners need to prepare themselves when attending for every interview. Typically, it involves a one-on-one interview with a BOI officer who is in charge of the company’s account.
Aside from an interview with the BOI officers, business owners may have to attend a second interview with relevant government bodies, depending on their business categories. This interview is often more intimidating than the previous one.
Step 3: Forms evaluation and approval
After the interviews, the company’s forms will be assessed and considered based on its investment capital. The BOI representative may sometimes contact the business owners to clarify certain things on their application before applying for the assessment.
The BOI will inform the business owners if their forms are accepted between forty and ninety working days. BOI will also tell them when to start operating their business.
Step 4: Acceptance of application
Upon BOI approval, business owners need to go to the BOI headquarters to retrieve their approved documents and the promotion acceptance form. They need to submit the promotion acceptance form within one month. Otherwise, they may lose their BOI promotion.
Step 5: Registering the company
Once business owners submit their promotion acceptance form, they can proceed to register a thai company with the Department of Business Development. If they already registered their company with the said organization, then they do not have to perform this step again.
Step 6: Obtaining visas and work permits
Business owners can apply for work permits and visas at the One-Stop Service Center for Visas and Work Permits at Chamchuri Square. They may also seek help from a professional agency that provides this service.
Step 7: Securing the BOI Certificate
The final step of the BOI application process is the company’s registration with the BOI’s E-investment platform. When creating a company account on the platform, business owners need to submit certain documents, including their company’s MOA and registration certificate.
The BOI will give applicants six months to submit the documents and complete the registration. After completion, the BOI will issue the certificate within ten working days.
Seeking expert help from a reputable Thailand company registration services provider
Foreign entrepreneurs can seek help from a professional Thailand company registration agency to help them get their BOI license. Some agencies can even offer an all-inclusive registration package that covers from BOI application to BOI compliance.