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Permits and Licenses for Your Business in Thailand

Permits and Licenses for Your Business in Thailand

Depending on the industry in which the company activates, there are different types of permits and licenses required for your business in Thailand. Our lawyers in Thailand can offer comprehensive information in this matter for you to properly start your activities in the country.

Permits for your business in Thailand

In Thailand, certain types of businesses like pharmaceuticals, some agricultural products, and alcoholic beverages have to be issued permits in order to produce and import inside the country. The permits for your business in Thailand are to be granted by the relevant ministries. Our Thai lawyers can provide more details on this matter. 

The foreign business license in Thailand

Certain categories of businesses in Thailand are not allowed to be owned in majority by foreign nationals or non-Thai persons if they are listed in the prohibited classes of the Foreign Business Act. If the foreign entity or firm wants to do business in one of the prohibited classes of business, it has to obtain a foreign business license in accordance with the regulations of the Foreign Business Act. A foreign business license in Thailand enables aliens (foreign entrepreneurs) to manage and lead foreign companies with activities which normally are restricted to aliens according to the Thai legislation.

If you want to know more details about the permits and licenses necessary for your company in Thailand, we invite you to watch the video below:


Acquiring the Foreign Business License in Thailand

Thai companies which are owned in majority by foreign citizens have to acquire a foreign business license from the Director-General of the Department of Commercial Registration with the approval of the Foreign Business Committee. The process can be simplified if you obtain the approval of the Thailand Board of Investment (BOI).

A foreign business license could grant foreign investors 100% ownership for the categories of businesses under certain classes of businesses that are normally prohibited to aliens. The approval and issuance of a Thai foreign business license may be influenced by various factors like the impact on employment in the country, transfer of technology, advantages to the public, and the possibility that the activity might be undertaken by Thai citizens. Our team can provide you with complete details if you are ready to apply for the Thai business visa.

Usually, the application process for a foreign business license can be quite complex. It could take at least four months to receive such a license for your business in Thailand. Our law firm in Thailand can provide guidance for this type of application process.

Industries requiring licensing in Thailand

There are certain business domains in Thailand for which a company needs to obtain special functioning licenses. Our lawyers in Thailand can offer you information on the licensing requirements that you will find in four main industries in Thailand:

Telecommunications licenses​

According to the Telecommunications Business Act of 2001, any radio or TV provider needs to apply for a license at the National Broadcasting and Telecommunications Commission (NBTC). Depending on the services you provide and on the complexity of your business you should apply for one of the three licenses available: 

• license for operators who don’t have a separated network;

• license for operators who own a network targeting small segments of the public;

• license for operators who address the general public.

Factory licensing in Thailand

The Department of Industrial Works from the Ministry of Industry in Thailand has specific requirements in terms of the factory licensing in this country. Depending on the size of the factory and on how much it pollutes, the owner needs to apply for one of the two available licenses:

• If you have a factory with 7-20 people for manufacturing you don’t need a license;

• For factories who rely on less than 50 employees and on equipment equivalent to less than 50 horse power you should seek approval from the Ministry of Industry before commencing work;

• Big Factories, highly polluting must obtain the factory license before the beginning of the production.

Factory licenses can be renews in 5 years for a fee of 100,000 baht.

Other businesses which require specific licenses are the restaurants and pharmaceutical companies. Thai Drug Act BE 2510 (AD 1967) regulates the conditions for a manufacturer to be able to produce, store or sell pharmaceutical products. A company operating in this field should obtain the approval from the Food and Drug Administration of Thailand (FDA) before entering the Thai market.

If you need to know more about the permits and licenses necessary for your Thai business, please contact our lawyers in Thailand. Furthermore, gaining permanent resident status in Thailand entitles you to several advantages. A work permit is simpler to acquire. You do not need to obtain a Thai visa extension annually. You are not required to provide a 90-day report, although there is conflicting information in regards to the 90-day report, so you have to double-check this when you apply. So, when you decide to apply for a residence permit in Thailand, get in touch with our agents for updated information.