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As a main rule, Thai majority companies are able to buy land according to the law in Thailand. Foreign majority businesses though are able to also buy land in Thailand under certain conditions in a short amount of time by the board of investment or BOI.
It’s a common practice that Thai majority companies buy land and property for their foreigner investors. It is important to note that over 50% of thares must belong to Thai shareholders. There are legal means to considered as protection for foreign minority shareholders as well.
No. The Amity Treaty enables US citizens to own a majority of shares in a Thai company and take part in a variety of business acitivites but it does not allow the foreign majority companies to own land in Thailand.
The best thing about it is that it enables foreign individuals to possess ownership right in a piece of land. As opposed to land leases, this type of ownership is going to be valid for so long that the company keeps operation going in Thailand and the land is not sold or transferred to another person or entity. Creating a local company in Thailand can be a good choice for individuals seeking investment to pass on to their heirs or individuals interested in doing business. In addition, there will be moragaign option, partial sales of the land as well as tax reduction and benefits.
Many foreign individuals at some point in time contemplate on finding a Thai national to serve as their nominee in order to by land or property in Thailand. It is advised to consider that this practice is illegal and has increasingly being scrutinized by Thailand Land Department and other governmental agency to identify the people who engage in such unlawful practices. Since new regulations being in place from 2006, Land Department officials conduct investigation on the companies wanting to purchase lands with more than 40% foreign ownership.
Previously, methods such as dual class share registrations to protect minority shareholding foreigners was in place. There are amendments under consideration and if they go through such methods are no longer going to be valid.
Another problematic aspect of registering a company in order to buy land or property in Thailand is the maintenance of the company such as filling balance sheets and a proper company address among other things. Companies that are considered inactive or are not earning enough money are prone to being delisted at some point.