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ResourcesCorporate and Tax AdvisoryThailand Corporate LawWill "Red Tape" Ever Stop Being an Issue in Thailand?

Will "Red Tape" Ever Stop Being an Issue in Thailand?

Transcript of the above video:

As the title of this video suggests, we are discussing so-called "red tape" when trying to do business here in Thailand. 

There has been some recent discussion about various business operations, various business entities, operators and actors here in the Thailand business community who have voiced concerns and are hoping to sort of "cut the red tape" if you want to call it that with respect to doing business here in the Kingdom. 

Some folks have asked me personally, they have said "Well do I think that as a practical matter, the red tape is all just going to go away?" The long story short is "no in the sense that I don't think red tape in a broad sense ever goes away. Governments regulate, that is what they do. That is sort of their raison d'être. That is the reason they exist. While some Governments may regulate less than others, some tend to be a little bit more active in regulating. Thailand does have a lot of overlapping entities that regulate various operations here in Thailand. It can lead to a rather Byzantine way of doing business so some streamlining I think is definitely called for and would probably help.

The thing to note is Thailand is ranked pretty high on ease of doing business compared to other countries. I have seen operations that are multinational operating in other jurisdictions both in Asia as well as South America, North America even under certain circumstances, Africa, not so much Europe as much but we do see some of that and I will say other places can be far more Byzantine for lack of a better term, than Thailand. For this reason I would say "no I don't think red tape is going to completely be gone." Some streamlining may occur and that may be very helpful for certain businesses. The other thing to think about is regulations evolve so they tend to cut things back and then over time new regulations accrete and we get back to where we initially were. 

That said it is good. In my opinion it would be good for business here in Thailand to go ahead and see things made less complex and in some cases needlessly complicated but that being said do I think that you are ever going to see a total end of the notion of red tape in Thailand? No and I don't think you are going to see that in any country for that matter. It is just always going to be there. Governments tend to regulate business to one degree or another and you are going to have to deal with some level of regulatory "red tape" when doing business in any jurisdiction.