Businesses that operate under the Investment Promotion Act, including the Thailand Board of Investment (BOI) and the Industrial Estate Authority of Thailand (IETA), are subject to different regulations when it comes to hiring foreign citizens. These companies do not have to comply with the same capital or employee requirements as other limited companies do.
To obtain a Work Permit, the company intending to bring a foreign skilled worker must first apply for an approval letter from the BOI or IEAT. With the approval letter and the company’s registration documents, bearing the signature of the authorized director, the foreign worker can then apply for a Non-Immigrant Business Visa at the Thai consular post aboard.
The company should file and submit an online request to “open a position” for the foreigner to work under the company. If the request is approved, a Work Permit application and visa extension can be submitted online.
Upon arrival in Thailand, the foreigner must go to the One Stop Service Centre for Visas and Work Permits (OSSC) in Bangkok where he can obtain his Work Permit Booklet, Non-B Visa extension, and multiple re-entry permit. The Visa and Work Permit may be granted for a period of 1 or 2 years.
At the OSSC, all applications and renewals can be completed within three hours, if all documents are presented.
In case the company cannot use the OSSC in Bangkok due to distance or any other reason, the company can apply for a work permit and visa at the local Department of Employment and Immigration Bureau Office.
Since October 2017, BOI-registered companies are allowed to electronically file Work Permit and Visa applications and renewals for expatriates through the Single Window for Visa and Work Permit System.
The foreign employees will receive a Digital Work Permit and any change in the employee’s work status will automatically update.