SUNDAY, April 14, 2024

Private sector to research government move allowing wealthy foreigners to own land

Private sector to research government move allowing wealthy foreigners to own land

Thailand's private sector intends to hire experts to research the latest government policy that would allow wealthy foreigners to own property in the country.

Sanan Angubolkul, chairman of the Thai Chamber of Commerce and chairman of the Joint Standing Committee on Commerce, Industry, and Banking (JSCCIB), announced the plan at a press conference on Tuesday.

He said that the JSCCIB is planning to draft a framework outlining the scope and issues on which the JSCCIB should focus before hiring an agency to gather information and conduct research to determine the benefits and drawbacks on foreigner land ownership.

He added that the study also aims to identify risks and other aspects that Thailand should consider before enforcing the regulation that allows foreigners to own land.

"The research findings are expected to be published in December," Sanun said. "Rather than being a right or wrong issue, it is preferable to view it as another avenue for attracting foreign investment into the country." 

Meanwhile, the chairman of the JSCCIB stated that he believes the government has good intentions.

The move comes as the government faces criticism for allowing wealthy foreigners to purchase land in Thailand. The policy, according to the majority of opponents, will make Thais poorer.

Despite strong opposition, the Cabinet agreed on Tuesday to allow foreigners to buy houses and up to a rai of land if they can show an investment of at least 40 million baht.

The directive will be in effect for five years after it is published in the Royal Gazette, which the government expects to happen soon.