Officials descend on Yaowarat to inspect gold shops, enforce law

FRIDAY, MARCH 22, 2024

Officials from the Ministry of Commerce on Friday inspected gold shops in the Yaowarat area of Bangkok’s Samphanthawong district to make sure that sellers abide by the law and that no fake gold is sold amid soaring prices.

Yaowarat, also known as Bangkok’s China Town, is one of Thailand’s largest gold shopping neighbourhoods.

Deputy minister Napintorn Srisunpang said that as gold prices reach a new high of over 37,500 baht per bath weight (15.244 grams), forgers would see a good opportunity in releasing fake gold bars and ornaments to the market for quick profit.

Last year, the ministry received over 1,600 complaints of fake gold, he added.

The inspection on Friday was carried out in collaboration with officials from the Gem and Jewelry Institute of Thailand (GIT) and the Office of the Consumer Protection Board (OCPB), who urged gold shops to clearly display prices and use scales that have been certified by the Department of Internal Trade.

Officials descend on Yaowarat to inspect gold shops, enforce law

Napintorn said that with fakers using modern technology to make it harder to detect fake gold with the naked eye, buyers are encouraged to purchase only products with BWC (buy with confidence) certificates from GIT and from reliable shops that are valid members of the Gold Traders Association.

“Please refrain from buying gold from online sellers, where you are unable to view in person the products or certificates before making payment,” he said.

Officials descend on Yaowarat to inspect gold shops, enforce law

He also warned that sellers who do not display a product’s price could be fined up to 10,000 baht. Using uncertified scales could land the offender in jail for up to six months or a 20,000 baht fine, and tampering with the scales could result in a 7-year imprisonment or 280,000 baht fine.

To report any problems with purchased products or services, contact the Department of Internal Trade at hotline 1569.