Agricultural Land Leases Off Limits to Foreigners
Amendments to the Agricultural Land Lease Act effective as of 30 April 2016 introduce a broad prohibition on “foreigners” from leasing land for agricultural purposes.
The amendments define “foreigner” generally along the same lines as Thailand’s Foreign Business Act, with one major difference: juristic entities ( such as limited companies or partnerships) which have as little as 25% non- Thai ownership will be considered “foreign”.
The amendments do not apply to foreigners who are protected by treaty or receive Board of Investment promotion. Significantly, there is no grandfathering clause in the amendments, thus they criminalize structures that were legal before the amendments went into effect. Parties do, however, have three years to comply with the amendments, meaning “foreigners” will have a period to divest holdings that were legal under prior law.
For more information contact Pricesanond at shelwig@ pricesanond. com.