Ministry is contemplating taxes for overseas on-line operators

The Treasury Department is exploring ways to lower corporate tax on the online foreign multinational companies providing services in Thailand, Fiscal Policy Office director general Kulaya Tantitemit said.

Her comment follows the agreement of G7 finance ministers at a recent meeting in London to support a global minimum tax rate of 15% for corporations in order to squeeze more money out of multinational corporations.

The move is intended to stop competition between countries in order to attract multinational companies through low tax rates.

However, Ms. Kulaya said that such an agreement was still a broad principle and the ministry would wait for further formal details.

She added that the Treasury Department will continue to investigate and analyze ways to introduce such a tax in Thailand.

Under Thai law, the country can only collect corporation tax on companies that have a permanent establishment in Thailand.

She added that Thailand has the right to tax the profits of multinational digital companies in Thailand if they transfer profits to their companies here. The ministry had previously introduced an e-service tax law in Thailand.

Starting September 1 of this year, foreign companies offering online services in Thailand will be required to register for 7% Value Added Tax (VAT) if their annual income exceeds 1.8 million baht.

VAT-liable e-service companies include those that provide download services for films, games, intermediary services and advertising.

More than 60 countries have already introduced this type of tax.

The Treasury Department is preparing to enact four organic laws to support the introduction of the e-service tax.

Of the four organic laws, two are ministerial ordinances and two are communications from the director general of the department.