US-Thailand Treaty of Amity

US-Thailand Treaty of Amity

The US-Thailand Treaty of Amity, also known as the Treaty of Amity and Economic Relations, is a special economic relationship between the United States and Thailand that offers significant business advantages. Enacted in 1966, the Treaty of Amity provides national treatment to American businesses, allowing them to maintain a majority shareholding or to wholly own a company, branch office, or representative office located in Thailand. This article aims to outline the restrictions, capital requirements, and the process of obtaining the Treaty of Amity Certification in Thailand.

Treaty of Amity Company Restrictions

Despite its beneficial nature, the Treaty of Amity does not grant American-owned businesses absolute freedom in their business operations. There are certain restrictions that apply to US companies under the treaty, including:

  1. Companies are prohibited from engaging in the business of land ownership, except for business operations related to manufacturing, mining, agriculture, and the services related to the aforementioned activities.
  2. Companies cannot engage in the business of inland communication, including inland transportation, communication, and fiduciary functions.
  3. American-owned businesses are not permitted to engage in the business of trading in agricultural products.
  4. Businesses involving the exploitation of land or other natural resources are also restricted.
  5. The treaty restricts American businesses from engaging in the business of providing services related to the broadcasting of radio and television.

Capital Requirements

According to the Treaty of Amity, there is a required minimum capital for US-owned businesses operating in Thailand. The minimum capital is determined by the type of business operation and the presence of Thai employees. Generally, the minimum capital required is two million Thai baht if the company employs three or fewer foreign employees. If the company employs more than three foreign employees, the required minimum capital can go up to three million Thai baht.

Procedures to Obtain the Treaty of Amity Certification

The process to obtain the Treaty of Amity Certification for US companies in Thailand is as follows:

  1. Company Registration: First, the company must be registered in Thailand with the Ministry of Commerce, ensuring that the majority of shareholders are American citizens or corporations and the company structure aligns with the treaty’s provisions.
  2. Document Preparation: After the company is registered, the next step is to prepare the necessary documents for the treaty certification. This includes a certificate of incorporation, a list of shareholders, operating documents, and a power of attorney, among others.
  3. Application Submission: The prepared documents must be certified by the US Commercial Service. The certified documents are then submitted to the Thai Department of Commercial Registration.
  4. Verification and Approval: The Thai authorities will verify the documents and the eligibility of the company under the Treaty of Amity. If approved, the Department of Commercial Registration will issue the Treaty of Amity certification.
  5. Commencement of Operations: Once the certification is obtained, the company can begin operations in Thailand under the privileges granted by the treaty.


The US-Thailand Treaty of Amity presents a valuable opportunity for American businesses seeking to operate in Thailand by granting substantial benefits and protections. Understanding the treaty’s restrictions, capital requirements, and the certification process can greatly simplify the process of establishing a US-owned business in Thailand. For comprehensive guidance, it’s recommended to engage the services of a business consultant or legal expert familiar with the treaty and Thai regulations.

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