Thailand may face VAT rate increase

Fri 2nd May 2014

Thailand may be forced to raise its Value Added Tax rate from 7% to 10% as the region slows due to political unrest.

Thailand has held its VAT rate down to 7% as a temporary measure for some years. It has wanted to match the Singapore GST rate of 7%. However, the government ordnance prolong the reduced rate has now expired.

Whilst a 3% rise to 10% would in principle raise the required amount to fill next year’s projected deficit, there is a big problem with tax avoidance and the black market which might be exasperated with a higher rate. But the government is under pressure from the international credit agencies to act.

Non-residents subject to higher Thai VAT

Non-resident companies providing taxable supplies in Thailand should general register and charge local VAT, so will be subject to any increase.

Foreign companies that carry out a business in Thailand are taxable persons for VAT purposes, although temporary registration are possible for short-term or one-off transactions. Foreign companies importing into or providing taxable supplies in the Free Trade Zones will remain exempt.