Advance Blog

March 25, 2020
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Bureau Update of 25 March

Ministry of Labour

Today cabinet approves urgent measures to help employers and employees.

  • Special residence permit extensions for migrant workers in Thailand, up to 30th June 2020
  • Employees enrolled in the Social Security system who have been laid off or asked to take leave without pay will receive compensation from Social Security at half their salary for up to 180 days. Employees affected by official orders to shut down certain businesses will receive Social Security compensation at half their salary for up to 60 days. Effective on 1 March – 31 August 2020.

Ministry of Finance

A package of stimulus measures to mitigate the impact of the coronavirus outbreak.

  • Loans up to 3 million baht for SMEs at 3% interest rate in the first two years while the government will also delay business tax payments for companies. Filing of other taxes for affected operators extended by three months, Filing of excise tax by service businesses extended by one month, Filing of excise tax for oil products operators extended to the 15th of the following month for three months, Exemption of import duty for products related to the prevention and treatment of Covid-19, Exemption of taxes and fee cuts for debt restructuring with non-financial institution creditors
  • The measures include 5,000-baht cash handouts a month for three months for some 3 million workers not covered by the Social Security Fund and freelance workers, who will also be offered soft loans worth 60 billion baht as well as tax breaks.  To receive the 5,000-baht handout, workers must register at the website www.เราไม่ทิ้งกัน.com from 28 March onwards, with the cash handout set to begin on 1 April.
  • Loans up to 3 million baht for SMEs at 3% interest rate in the first two years while the government will also delay business tax payments for companies. Filing of other taxes for affected operators extended by three months, Filing of excise tax by service businesses extended by one month, Filing of excise tax for oil products operators extended to the 15th of the following month for three months, Exemption of import duty for products related to the prevention and treatment of Covid-19, Exemption of taxes and fee cuts for debt restructuring with non-financial institution creditors.  The state-run/ SOE banks, various ministries  and government foundations will also conduct occupational training to the informal workers and new graduates.
  • The Social Security Board decided to defer the monthly contributions of the employers and self-employed individuals to the Social Security Office for the months of March, April and May by 3 months (ie: the deadline for the March contribution would be postponed to July 15.)
  • The Bank of Thailand’s Monetary Policy Committee voted by 4:2 to keep the policy rate at 0.75 percent.  The central bank noted that while Thailand’s financial system is sound, the prolonged outbreak means the market would take some time to recover.
  • The Bank of Thailand expects Thailand’s GDP to contract by 5.3 percent in 2020 before rebounding to a 3 percent growth in 2021. The main factors contributing to Thailand’s GDP contraction this year are the decline in export and tourism – the latter of which is expected to drop by 60 percent. 
The Australian Embassy Bangkok
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