Want a 10-year visa? Are you wealthy? Here's how to get it

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Want a 10-year visa? Are you wealthy? Here's how to get it

Post by Gaybutton »

Thailand, do you want to attract well heeled foreigners? How about us expats who are already here and have been here many years? Maybe many of us don't qualify for a US $80,000 per year pension, but that doesn't mean we're not well off enough financially. You want foreign money being spent in Thailand? Release us from that 800,000 baht in a Thai bank account requirement and I, for one, will be happy to help you out . . .
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Govt to entice rich expats

Package to help lift post-Covid economy

by Chatrudee Theparat and Mongkol Bangprapa

15 September, 2021

The cabinet has greenlighted an economic stimulus and investment promotion package aimed at attracting wealthy foreigners and highly skilled professionals from overseas to help revive the economy post-Covid-19.

Benefits in the package include a 10-year Thai visa for not only approved special visitors but also their spouses and children, said government spokesman Thanakorn Wangboonkongchana, on Tuesday.

The package also includes automatic work permits, the same rates of income tax as Thai citizens, tax exemption for income earned abroad, and ownership of properties and land, he said.

Mr Thanakorn said that the right to choose to pay a fixed rate of income tax at 17% within the package is being offered but only to foreign experts contributing to the development of the government's flagship Eastern Economic Corridor (EEC) scheme.

The government expects to attract more than a million qualified people to Thailand in the next five years, beginning next year, he said.

"The government also expects these foreigners to spend on average a million baht per person per year while staying and working in Thailand, or about a trillion baht in the next five years in total," Mr Thanakorn said.

About 800 billion baht is also expected from the money invested by about 90,000 foreigners as required in the application forms for these long-term visas, he said.

Another 270 billion baht is also expected to be derived from taxes paid by these foreigners: 180 billion baht from income tax, 70 billion baht from value-added tax and 22 billion baht from taxes related to their investments, he said.

The government has four targeted groups for this long-term visa scheme with the first group being wealthy global citizens who travel frequently and have assets in several countries, he said.

To obtain a long-term Thai visa, this group would be required to invest at least US$500,000 (16.5 million baht) in Thai government bonds in the form of foreign direct investment (FDI) or in real estate, he said.

The minimum income required for this group is US$80,000 per year for the past two years, while the required minimum value of assets owned is US$1 million and the minimum health insurance coverage required is US$100,000, he said.

The second target group are wealthy pensioners who are at least 50 years of age with sufficient pensions to cover their costs of living in Thailand, he said.

The people in this group are required to invest at least US$250,000 in Thai government bonds in the FDI format or in real estate, he said, adding that the minimum income required for the group is US$40,000 per person per year.

The minimum health insurance package required for this group is also US$100,000 coverage per person, he said.

The third group are the so-called work-from-Thailand professionals who are interested in living in Thailand while working remotely for their employers in other countries, he said.

The people in this third group are expected to be digital nomads and employees of large organisations who are close to retirement, he said.

The fourth and last group of foreigners expected to be interested in this long-term visa programme are highly skilled professionals who may want to come to Thailand to either work as experts in the government's target industries, Mr Thanakorn said.

Highly skilled professionals who would work as university lecturers teaching subjects related to industries of importance are also within this group, he said.

They are required to have at least five years of work experience, earn at least US$40,000 per year and hold a health insurance policy with a coverage value of US$100,000, he said.

The Board of Investment of Thailand has been assigned to set up a new centre to specifically serve this long-term visa programme, Mr Thanakorn added.

https://www.bangkokpost.com/thailand/ge ... ich-expats
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Thai Cabinet Committee approves multiple campaigns to hopefully attract high-spending foreigners upon country reopening

By Nop Meechukhun

14 September 2021

The Thai Cabinet Committee today, September 14th, has approved multiple tourism campaigns to attract foreigners upon Thailand’s reopening, including granting visas for 10 years, expecting to increase the country’s income by 1 trillion baht per year, according to them.

Government spokesperson Thanakorn Wangboonkongchana told reporters after the cabinet meeting this afternoon that the committee has agreed, in principle, economic and investment stimulus campaigns in Thailand by initially attracting four target groups of high-potential foreigners for a long-term stay.

The groups include 1.) foreigners from countries with high prosperity rates, 2.) foreign retirees, 3.) businesspeople who want to work in Thailand, and 4.) special-skilled people.

The campaign consists of two main measures:

1. Long-term resident visa issuance for a group of high-potential foreigners: They will receive various exemptions and benefits, such as an exemption for long-term resident visas and smart visa holders to not require a notice when their stay exceeds 90 days.

2. Amendments to relevant laws or regulations: such as laws related to land ownership and work management to allow foreign workers to work for their employers inside and outside the Kingdom, exemption of the previous requirement of one foreign worker per four full-time Thai employees, and others related to taxes and customs procedures.

Foreign visitors who applied under the stimulus campaigns will benefit with 1.) a new Long-Term Resident Visa (LTR visa) valid for 10 years, including dependent partners/spouses and children, 2.) a work permit after LTR approval, 3.) income tax exemption for income from abroad, and 4.) right to own/lease long-term real estate (including land), etc.

The Cabinet expected that the measures will be initially implemented for five fiscal years (2022-2026) and will increase the number of foreigners living in Thailand to 1 million people, increasing 1 trillion baht of domestic spending, 800 billion baht investment, and 270 billion baht tax income.

Specifics on eligibility requirements were not made entirely clear and likely will not be until the final regulations are published in the Royal Gazette

https://thepattayanews.com/2021/09/14/t ... reopening/

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Re: Want a 10-year visa? Are you wealthy? Here's how to get it

Post by whitedesire »

Why would one want to invest potentially half a million dollars just to live in a country, I wouldn't. Or even 250k. I'd rather get a retirement visa in a country with easier options, there are plenty of other countries, plenty.

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Re: Want a 10-year visa? Are you wealthy? Here's how to get it

Post by Gaybutton »

Part of Barry's article says:
Barry Kenyon wrote:
Wed Sep 15, 2021 10:08 am
The immediate question is whether current retirees will have to move to the new regulations or whether they will be protected on the rules as they are. It is possible, though by no means certain, that they will be “grandfathered”, that is able to retain one year renewable extensions of stay but without any of the new perks promised for the wealthier group.
I see no reason to be concerned about that. Nothing I've seen indicates any plans or proposals to change the rules for current retirees and I can't imagine any reason why the powers-that-be would want to do something like that. If they do, that would raise the eyebrows of anyone who wants to go for that 10-year visa. How could they be assured Thailand wouldn't change the rules on them in the middle of the game? No matter how wealthy you might be, would you go for it if they change the rules for current retirees?

One of the best pieces of advice I ever received was "Don't worry until you have something to worry about." As far as I can tell, there is nothing for current expats - or even those who wish to become expats in Thailand - to worry about.
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Thailand’s new rules for retiree visas sound alarm bells

By Barry Kenyon

September 15, 2021

The Thai Cabinet has agreed the framework of a new visa policy which has been under consideration by government committees for most of 2021. The general idea is to lure well-heeled foreigners to have a base in the kingdom whilst enjoying a number of perks which include a 10 year permission to stay, the end of 90-day reporting, an attractive income tax structure and owning land outright. However, the devil – or devils – lurk in the detail. As always.

One of the eligible groups are “wealthy” retirees who are described as over 50 years and with an annual income of US$40,000, or US$250,000 in government bonds or ownership of real estate to the latter amount. At present retiree rules are very different. Ownership of property or of government assets doesn’t count, whilst the income rule is 800,000 baht in the bank or in foreign income shipped in monthly. That equates to only about US$25,000 and can sometimes be avoided if a friend loans you the cash.

The immediate question is whether current retirees will have to move to the new regulations or whether they will be protected on the rules as they are. It is possible, though by no means certain, that they will be “grandfathered”, that is able to retain one year renewable extensions of stay but without any of the new perks promised for the wealthier group. An earlier government statement last June suggested that comprehensive insurance, as well as Covid-related, would be required for “all” retirement-based visas and extensions of stay issued by Thai embassies abroad and by the immigration bureau here. Lots of detail still to come on those issues.

The Cabinet decision also seeks to encourage migration by rich foreigners – basically those with assets worth one million dollars US – by linking a ten year visa to an automatic work permit and a special-reduced income tax rate for those working in the Eastern Economic Corridor which is currently based in the Rayong area. These ideas seem to be based on the current four-year Smart visa for hi-tech experts and some digital nomads which does not anyway require a work permit or the 90 days reporting. Although not well known, the Smart visa has already broken new visa ground.

The government says it is now committed to allowing “some” rich foreigners to own freehold land. This is likely to mean a newly-built house on specially-agreed estates with the proviso that the dwelling is bought directly from the developer. This perk was publicized as a possibility last June when it was suggested that some Elite visa holders might qualify provided they kept on investing over a five year period. But the most recent Cabinet statement doesn’t mention Elite.

The overall aim is to boost the Thai economy and the Thai treasury by attracting one million or so wealthy foreigners to stay long-term without the traditional downsides. The proposals will appeal mostly to Chinese and other Asian investors who already dominate the foreign-bought condo market and the multi-billion (in any currency) import and export complex dominated by the Eastern Economic Corridor. The English-speaking, social media keyboard warriors are already ridiculing the idea that Thailand can attract hundreds of thousands of really wealthy guys and gals. However, the proposals are not primarily aimed at the current expat population.

https://www.pattayamail.com/latestnews/ ... lls-371948

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Re: Want a 10-year visa? Are you wealthy? Here's how to get it

Post by Jun »

whitedesire wrote:
Wed Sep 15, 2021 9:04 am
Why would one want to invest potentially half a million dollars just to live in a country, I wouldn't. Or even 250k. I'd rather get a retirement visa in a country with easier options, there are plenty of other countries, plenty.
I guess it depends on how much you have and how much you want to live in a country.

Anyone with $1m is probably not going to be very keen to invest half of it in a poor performing investment.
If a person has $10 million or $100million and wants to live in Thailand with less paperwork, it might make sense. Of course, the number of eligible people falls off as this goes up.

Incidentally, which countries have easier retirement visa options AND are nice to live in ?

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Re: Want a 10-year visa? Are you wealthy? Here's how to get it

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What about us? Furious retirees/expats in Thailand slam proposals to attract wealthy foreigners

By webfact

September 15, 2021

The Thai government's ambitious proposals to attract a million foreigners in the next five years and get a trillion baht into the ailing economy - as reported by Daily News and many other Thai sites - have been roundly slammed by retirees and foreigners with Thai families already living and contributing to the kingdom.

They are shouting from the rooftops throughout the nation: What the hell about us?

They feel the government don't care about people who have committed to Thailand for years. They say the cabinet's decision is just a cynical ploy to try and get money in taxes - especially from other Asians.

They feel that they will have to continue to jump through numbing hoops like 90 day reporting because they don't have a million dollars to invest and don't work in Thailand.

They say they bring money in, support the local economy, support Thai people like wives and children but are treated like second class citizens as they are not the cash cows favored by the government.

In fact they feel they are being treated more like buffaloes.

They think they deserve residence not people with more money who will leave after a few years anyway.

ASEAN NOW posters led the way in swift condemnation of the plans even though those plans have been in the air for months and some of the finer details like the hot chestnut of land ownership, for decades.

Djayz summed it up well with: "What about those foreigners who have lived here for years, have families, jobs, cars, houses, stay out of trouble, support the local community and are here long term, not just to move money about, invest then (leave) as things get ugly?"

Almer said: "I'm lacking in all their requirements, but I spend my pension here and help the needy in the village - if that counts for anything".

Clearly he thought it didn't.

Starky said: "What about those that live here and spend over a million baht a year".

Some pointed out that the answer to that was that a million baht was not much in the grand scheme of things and the government were trying to make things easier for foreigners with much more wealth.

Others called it greed and mentioned the targets for the scheme were more likely Chinese nationals and even Indians.

Dg1980 summed up this feeling with: "Top earners in, broke-ass dudes out".

InThailand said: "These clowns don't get it. The Land of Smiles is becoming less attractive each year".

Others pointed to better and more trustworthy schemes to attract foreigners in Malaysia, even Singapore.

Still more suggested that the plans were a sneaky way to turn an Elite Card - Thailand's expensive long term visa style scheme - into a way to get residence.

While more drew attention to the words "lure" and "attract" and the heavy connotations of each.

Yet more pooh-poohed the notion that the Thai authorities would ever change the rules on land ownership as has been muted for years.

And even if they did, shouldn't those who live in Thailand already be first in line for benefits rather than those with a fat checkbook who know little about and care not a jot about the country and its people.

Emdog an expat in Jomtien summed it up in a final, devastating one liner:

"What am I chopped liver?"

He answered that question himself with an emphatic "yes".

https://aseannow.com/topic/1231608-what ... oreigners/

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