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‘Downtown VAT Refund for Tourists’ scheme gains momentum with opening of Siam Paragon counter

Dec 18. 2018
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By The Nation

The “Downtown VAT Refund for Tourists” campaign has kick-started an initiative to set up counters in numerous locations across central Bangkok to help tourists obtain value added tax refunds when shopping at authorised retailers, the Revenue Department said on Tuesday.

VAT refunds will be returned to tourists in the form of cash in baht, encouraging them to continue shopping in Thailand with ease and convenience. 

Apart from helping tourists, the campaign has been initiated to promote growth and balanced income distribution to small businesses.

As one of the founding parties of VAT Refund Centre (Thailand) Co Ltd, Siam Piwat said it was proud to be an official partner and representative to assist tourists with VAT refund processes in five locations across central Bangkok: Siam Paragon, CentralWorld, Central Chidlom, Robinson Sukhumvit and The Emporium. 

Charnchai Cherdchoowongtha-nakorn, senior executive vice president of Siam Piwat’s retail business development division, said: “Siam Paragon is delighted to fully support the government’s policies and work with the Revenue Department. ‘Downtown VAT Refund for Tourists’ is set up to be a key area on G Floor, which tourists can find conveniently, as it is located by one of our entrances connected to the BTS Skytrain and taxi stops. 

“Additionally, adept, knowledgeable and service-minded staff have been assigned to accommodate tourists with paperwork and essential procedures in order to fully and successfully comply with policies from the Revenue Department.

“Not only will shopping tourists of Siam Paragon, Siam Centre and Siam Discovery find it convenient to proceed with VAT refund at Siam Paragon, all tourists who have purchased goods, in accordance with all policies by the Revenue Department, are welcomed to complete all necessary procedures at our department stores. 

“The convenience of VAT refund at Siam Paragon is extremely helpful for those who have purchased in the popular shopping destination One Siam, as hundreds of SME businesses, small retailers and corporations are located in the area, covering a vast space of 2 million square metres, with over 20 hotels to accommodate international tourists in more than 3,000 rooms available – with extra support from Bangkok’s BTS Skytrain system, connecting Ratchathevi and National Stadium to Siam station,” Charnchai explained.

“According to statistics, out of 400,000-500,000 shopping tourists per day at One Siam, an average of 938 VAT Refund Forms (PP10) have been filled each day from shops and retail spaces in Siam Paragon, totalling to a signification amount of 342,494 applicants,” the executive added.

The initiative of establishing VAT refund counters directly impacts the tourism industry on multiple levels, according to the Revenue Department: 

1. The retained money which tourists have spent after receiving VAT refunds helps small retailers and businesses, which, in turn, strengthens Thailand’s economy; 

2. The growth in sales volume and sales value is proportional to the rate of economic growth and revenue from tourist spending; 

3. A significant decline in VAT refunds at Suvarnabhumi and Don Mueang airports reflects a positive sign of service improvement; and 

4.The VAT refund for tourists promotes better opportunities for local retail shops to generate more sales.

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