Business with Thailand
Here you find all the relevant information about Thailand as a business location. The GTCC is delighted to advise you on opportunities in the target market Thailand and to assist you to sustainably enter the market.
With a size of approximately 513,115 square kilometers, the kingdom of Thailand is located in Southeast Asia, surrounded by the following countries:
Thailand has a population of about 69 million people. The capital and biggest city is Bangkok with around 10 million inhabitants.
The official language is Thai. In most major companies, especially foreign ones, English is the common language.
There is a direct access to the Pacific Ocean (Gulf of Thailand), as well as to the Indian Ocean (Andaman Sea). The Pacific side has a coast length of 1,840 kilometers and the Indian coast side 865 kilometers, which equals a total coast length of 2,705 kilometers.
The Kingdom of Thailand is a constitutional monarchy with a parliamentary type of government.
The Thai Baht (THB) is Thailand's official currency. At the current date, the official rate is 38.52 THB for 1 Euro (15/01/2019).
Following public holidays apply for the year 2019:
|Tuesday||1 January||New Year's Day|
|Tuesday||19 February||Makha Bucha Day|
|Monday||6 April||Substitution for Chakri Day on 6 April|
|Monday||15 April||Substitution for Songkran on 13 April|
|Tuesday||16 April||Substitution for Songkran on 14 April|
|Wednesday||1 May||Labour Day|
|Monday||20 May||Visakha Bucha Day|
|Tuesday||16 July||Asaranha Bucha Day|
|Monday||12 August||H.M. The Quenn's Birthday|
|Monday||14 October||Substitution for Passing of HM the Late King on 13 October|
|Wednesday||23 October||Chulalongkorn Day|
|Thursday||5 December||H.M. The King's Birthday/Father's Day|
|Tuesday||10 December||Constitution Day|
|Tuesday||31 December||New Year's Eve|
Tax and Legal
Business activities of foreign individuals and companies in Thailand are restricted by the Foreign Business Act (FBA).
Establishing a business in Thailand
Thai corporate law knows five types of society:
Thai labor law is regulated mainly by the Labor Act and the Social Security Act.
Taxes in Thailand
Thai tax law is mainly based on the Revenue Code (RC) and numerous government regulations. Taxes include:
Import and Export
Thailand is a member of the ASEAN Free Trade Area (AFTA). In principle, no license is required for the import of goods from Thailand into Germany.
German court decisions are neither recognized nor enforced in Thailand. Several international agreements exist in the field of arbitration, making proceedings to enforce foreign judgments considerably more promising and less complicated.
Being a central economic location in Southeast Asia, the Kingdom of Thailand is used by many foreign companies as a home base for further expansion in the Asian region.
GDP was US$ 506.2 billion in 2018 and is expected to grow by 4.2% in 2019.
The kingdom of Thailand has a stable financial business environment and offers manifold opportunities for investments.
Renewable Energy, Energy Efficiency
The economic growth of the past years and the expected strong growth of the upcoming years come along with a significant increase in energy consumption.
German-Thai Business Relations
Diplomatic relations between the member states of the German Customs Union and the Kingdom of Siam were established in 1862 with the signing of the Treaty of Friendship, Trade and Shipping by Count Friedrich zu Eulenburg and King Mongkut. Since then, the bilateral ties steadily expanded.
Today, there are more than 600 German companies operating in Thailand.
The most important trading partners for Thailand are:
Germany is by far Thailand’s most important trading partner in the European Union. German companies are regular exhibitors at Thailand’s major trade fairs, and Thai firms are equally regular visitors and exhibitors in trade fairs in Germany.
According to figures from DESTATIS, exports from Germany to Thailand totaled EUR 6,3 bn. in 2018. At the same time, exports from Thailand to Germany accounted for EUR 4,8 bn.
The most important export goods from Germany to Thailand are:
- Automotive and automotive parts
- Chemical products
- Electronic products
The most important import goods from Thailand are:
- Rubber and plastic products
- Automotive parts
German products and their quality have an excellent reputation in Thailand (“Made in Germany”).
Strategic development partnerships
develoPPP.de – Development partnerships with the private sector
The develoPPP.de programme was set up by the German Federal Ministry for Economic Cooperation and Development (BMZ) to foster private sector engagement in areas where business opportunities and the need for development action overlap.
BMZ supports your company with innovative projects and commercial investments in developing and emerging countries that have long-term benefits for the local population:
- Your company receives financial and professional support.
- You fund at least half the total costs, to which BMZ contributes up to EUR 200,000.
- You work closely with one of the three official partners appointed by BMZ to implement the programme on its behalf: DEG – Deutsche Investitions- und Entwicklungsgesellschaft GmbH, Deutsche Gesellschaft für Internationale Zusammenarbeit (GIZ) GmbHor sequa gGmbH help you to plan and finance your project and implement it on the ground.
The projects are realized in a wide range of sectors and topics and include the training of local experts, the use of climate-friendly technologies and product certification, as well as the improvement of eco- and social standards in manufacturing facilities.
It is possible for several companies to pool their efforts and work together with stakeholders from industry and commerce, governmental and non-governmental organisations and other national and international organisations (multi-stakeholders).
You may submit your project idea to DEG, GIZ or sequa by participating in one of the ideas competitions held four times a year.