Income tax for high-skilled expats in target industries lowered to 17%


The Cabinet on Tuesday approved lowering the withholding tax rate to 17 per cent for highly skilled foreign professionals in target industries.

A source from the Cabinet meeting said the draft royal decree on tax measures was approved to attract high-skilled foreign talent. The move means highly skilled foreign workers in government-targeted sectors will pay a flat rate of 17 per cent tax on their income.

The decree will also exempt wealthy foreigners, wealthy foreign pensioners and high-skilled foreigners with long-term residency visas from being taxed on income or assets earned before they moved to Thailand.

The tax exemption is aimed at drawing more wealthy foreigners to live in the Kingdom, the source said.

Earlier, the Cabinet approved a measure to grant 10-year residency visas to four groups of foreigners – “wealthy global citizens”, “wealthy pensioners”, “work-from-Thailand professionals” and “high-skilled professionals”.

The source said the decree approved on Tuesday would set a rate of 17 per cent withholding tax for targeted-industry employers to deduct from salaries of high-skilled professionals. Targeted businesses are exempted from paying corporate income tax in a move designed to promote investment, especially in the Eastern Economic Corridor.

The draft decree states that high-skilled foreign professionals can choose not to add the income on which they pay withholding tax to their yearly taxable revenue.