Initial Approval For Long-Stay Visas

Traisuree Taisaranakul
Deputy government spokeswoman Traisuree Taisaranakul

The cabinet has approved in principle a programme that has the goal of attracting 300 billion baht worth of foreign investments in exchange for granting long-stay visas.

The two draft regulations, issued by the Interior Ministry, were put to the cabinet which approved them in principle yesterday, said Traisuree Taisaranakul, deputy government spokeswoman.

One draft pertains to foreign nationals being permitted to obtain the Thai Privilege Card (TPC) while the other draft grants recipients of the TPC special permission to remain in the kingdom over an extended period of time for work.

Ms Taisaranakul said the two drafts provide the legal basis for implementing the Flexible Plus Programme (FPP) where foreign nationals are incentivised to make an investment in the country worth at least US$1 million (30 million baht) in return for their entitlement to a one-year work permit.

The programme is designed to appeal to high-spending foreign investors in a bid to kick-start key sectors in the economy post-pandemic. Real estate is included among the sectors.

Apart from properties, the foreign nationals may also invest in limited or public companies as well as the stock market.

Those qualified for the TPCs include the recipients’ legally married spouses and their legitimate children aged not over 20. They can exchange temporary visas for non-immigrant visas lasting up to five years, according to the deputy government spokeswoman.

The Tourism Authority of Thailand has estimated the FPP would be able to attract some 10,000 high-purchasing investors, generating around 300 billion baht for the economy.

Thailand is making preparations to reopen its tourism industry to fully vaccinated foreign nationals on 1st November.

The visitors with double doses will be able to forgo the mandatory quarantine although they will be tested for COVID-19 upon their arrival in Thailand.