Permanent secretary for finance Somchai Sujjapongse said the new plan would be implemented through three state agencies, these being the Revenue Department, the Excise Department and the Treasury Department.
The focus for the three departments will be the effective taxation of large enterprises.
Somchai emphasized the importance of the taxation of major corporations, which constituted between 70 and 80 per cent of corporate income tax. He said that tax revenue from these corporations over the past three to four years had not reached target, which could have resulted from loopholes in the taxation system. Some businesses had benefited from reduced overheads and other costs while maintaining the price of their products or services, yet tax revenue in recent years had not reflected the increased profits.
The permanent secretary also stated that the Revenue, Excise and Treasury Departments must enforce taxation in an indiscriminating manner on both bricks-and-mortar shops and online businesses.
Meanwhile in another development to do with online businesses and the growing e-commerce sector in Thailand, the Central Committee on Prices of Goods and Services at the Commerce Ministry issued new regulations in March 2017 concerning the display of online pricing and add-on expenses. The regulations apply to any business operator selling goods or services via an e-commerce system or online.
The sale of goods and services on any online platform such as social media sites, mobile applications and online marketplaces are to comply with the following requirements:
- The price, service fee, type, kind, nature, size, weight, other expenses and other details of goods or services must be completely and clearly displayed.
- While the price and service fee can also be shown per unit in any figure, Arabic numerals must be used.
- While an accompanying translation into one or more other languages is permitted, the description and/or any details to be shown along with the price or service fee must be in Thai.
- The retail price of goods or services displayed online must be the same as the sale price or service charge to customers, except where the customer is charged a price less than that shown online.
Any business operator that fails to comply with these requirements may be subject to a fine.
Commenting on the new regulations, a spokesman for leading international law firm in Thailand BSA Law, said: “The e-commerce business sector is growing in Thailand though there are only a few regulations governing it. The new regulations issued in March are a welcome move by the Commerce Ministry and we hope more will follow, to see that e-commerce here continues to grow in the right way.”
Established over 30 years ago, BSA Law provides legal advice and a full range of commercial and corporate legal and financial services to the Thai and foreign communities. Its areas of expertise include Thai labour law, Thai law in general, company law, contracts, notarization and certification, intellectual property, insurance, real estate, investment, starting a business in Thailand and taxation, accounting and auditing services.
The Thai law firm also has a Thai visa service department handling visa and Thailand work permit related issues.