US-Thai Treaty of Amity

Under the US-Thai Treaty of Amity, American citizens and companies maintain majority ownership of their Thailand incorporated business while receiving national company privileges. They are exempt from the restrictions imposed by the Foreign Business Act.

To receive these benefits, qualifying business entities must be registered as an Amity Treaty company. GPS Legal can assist with this process, which is relatively quick and straightforward.

What Are the Benefits?

The US-Thai Treaty of Amity fosters a strong economic partnership that benefits businesses, investors, and both nations. As economic landscapes and international relations evolve, the treaty remains an enduring symbol of strong diplomatic ties and shared goals.

American companies that register as Amity companies can maintain majority ownership of their company or branch office in Thailand, and receive national treatment, exempt from restrictions imposed by the Foreign Business Act. This opens up a wide range of opportunities for them in the Thai market.

In addition, Amity companies are exempt from import duties and can remit profits, dividends, royalties, fees and interests earned in Thailand without restrictions. This is a major benefit as it simplifies the process of doing business in Thailand and reduces their operating costs. Amity companies also have protection from the government’s nationalization and expropriation of their assets. The US-Thai Amity Treaty also provides access to international dispute resolution mechanisms. The Commercial Department has extensive experience with handling Amity set-ups.

How Do I Register a Company Under the Treaty of Amity?

Essentially, a company can seek protection under the Amity Treaty by providing documentation from the Commercial Service Office of the US Embassy in Bangkok that the majority of shareholders are American (by birth or naturalization). This is followed by pursuing the necessary administrative processes to verify registration.

Companies registered under the Amity Treaty will be exempt from most restrictions on foreign investment under the Foreign Business Act and can operate on the same basis as Thai companies. However, if they plan to employ workers, they will need to comply with work permit requirements.

Plizz can take care of all aspects of registering an Amity treaty company – including preparing, filing and submitting the required documents. We will also liaise with the Commercial Services Office and the Ministry of Commerce to ensure a smooth application process. We can even help you obtain a work permit if needed. Please contact us to find out more. Our team is always happy to assist.

What Are the Requirements?

The applying person(s) or business organization must be a corporation, partnership, branch office, joint venture or limited company with majority ownership by US citizens. Similarly, the applying parent or holding company of a subsidiary must be a corporation with majority ownership by US citizens either through birth or naturalization.

Companies registered under the Treaty of Amity receive national treatment and are exempt from many restrictions imposed by Thailand’s Foreign Business Act of 1972. However, they cannot own land and are not allowed to participate in activities related to local trade in indigenous agricultural products; banking involving depository functions; domestic trade; and exploitation of the environment.

In order to register a company under the US-Thai Treaty of Amity, a number of documents must be submitted to the Ministry of Commerce. This includes articles of incorporation, list of shareholders and directors, notarized copies of passports for US shareholders or directors and other supporting documentation. Plizz can help you prepare the documents and get your company registered quickly.

What Are the Disadvantages?

The Treaty of Amity allows American companies to maintain a majority shareholding or wholly own a company, branch office, or representative office in Thailand. It also gives these firms national treatment, meaning they can engage in a wide range of business activities on the same terms as Thai companies. It also protects these companies from the expropriation of their assets by the Thai government.

However, there are limitations. For example, a US-based company cannot own land under this treaty and can only participate in domestic trade in indigenous agricultural products. It is also not allowed to engage in banking activities involving fiduciary or depository functions.

Despite these restrictions, the US-Thai Treaty of Amity still offers many benefits for investors. If you’re thinking about establishing a treaty-protected company, Plizz can walk you through the details and help you decide whether this option is the right one for you. Contact us now to get started. We look forward to hearing from you!

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