Thailand’s Cabinet has approved an economic stimulus and investment promotion package aimed at attracting wealthy foreigners and highly skilled professionals from overseas to help revive the post-COVID economy.

Government spokesman Thanakorn Wangboonkongchana said benefits in the package include a 10-year Thai visa for not only approved special visitors but also their spouses and children, automatic work permits, the same rates of income tax as Thai citizens, tax exemption for income earned abroad and ownership of property and land.

He said the goal is to attract one million wealthy foreigners within five years, generating about 1 trillion baht of spending, 800 billion baht of investment and 270 billion baht in tax income.

The new measures will offer long-term residency visas for four categories of foreigners: rich global citizens, wealthy pensioners, professionals working in Thailand and highly-skilled workers.

Mr. Thanakorn added that the Board of Investment of Thailand has been assigned to set up a new center specifically to serve this long-term visa program. Holders will also be exempted from the need to report to immigration authorities every 90 days.

Wealthy global citizens

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.

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