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Details of SMART Visa Program

Details of SMART Visa Program


Smart Visa is a new type of visa specially designed to attract highly skilled manpower, investors, executives and startups entrepreneurs wishing to work or invest in the following targeted industries in the Kingdom of Thailand. Smart Visa holders will be granted maximum 4-year permission to stay, exemption from the work permit requirement and entitled to additional privileges.

Targeted industries

  • Next-Generation Automotive
  • Smart Electronics
  • Affluent, Medical and Wellness Tourism
  • Agriculture and Biotechnology
  • Food for the Future
  • Automation and Robotics
  • Aviation and Logistics
  • Biofuels and Biochemicals
  • Digital
  • Medical Hub
  • Alternative Dispute Resolution
  • Human Resource Development in Science and Technology
  • Environmental Management and Renewable Energy
  • Types of Smart Visa

    The following categories of Smart Visa will be allocated to Smart Visa applicants, depending on the purpose or activity that foreigners wish to conduct in the Kingdom of Thailand.

    Visa Type

    Category

    Purpose

    SMART

    T

    Talent

    I

    Investor

    E

    Executive

    S

    Startup entrepreneur

    O

    Spouse and legitimate children (Other) of Smart Visa holders

    Qualifications and Criteria

    1) SMART “T”(Talent): Highly skilled professionals in the targeted industries

    General Case

    Qualifications and Criteria

    Privileges

    1.Minimum income of no less than 100,000 Baht/month or equivalent. In case of the experts having an employment contract with a startup, or retired experts having endorsements from a relevant agency, minimum income of no less than 50,000 Baht per month is required.

    2.Having an employment or service contract with an entity in Thailand or overseas with an assignment to work in Thailand. The remaining term of such contract must be at least 1 year.

    3.Having expertise in science and technology relevant to the targeted industries and endorsed by an agency within the Strategic Talent Center (STC)’s network.

    4.Employers in Thailand must be certified for being engaged in the targeted industries by relevant government agencies such as the National Innovation Agency (Public Organization) and Digital Economy Promotion Agency.

    1. Maximum renewable 4-year visa, but not exceeding the employment/service contract term

    2. No work permit required for working in the endorsed companies. In case of changes of jobs, additional endorsements in accordance with the relevant requirements must be obtained.

    3. 90-day reporting to the Immigration at the One Stop Service Center extended to 1 year.

    4. No re-entry permit required.

    5. Spouse and children granted the right to stay and work in Thailand with no work permit required (Children wishing to work must be at least 18 years. The jobs must not be on the prohibited list of occupations and professions for foreigners).

    6. Access to a fast-track service at international airports in Thailand (where available).

    Experts working in government agencies / higher education institutions / specialized training institutions / Alternative Dispute Resolution

    Qualifications and Criteria

    Privileges

    1. Being the experts working in a government agency, higher education institution and specialized training institution, or those entering the Kingdom to deliver Alternative Dispute Resolution services.

    2. Having an employment or service contract or a document showing cooperation or employment issued by a government agency, higher education institution, specialized training institution or arbitration institution such as the Thailand Arbitration Center, the Thailand Arbitration Institute etc. by which employment in Thailand is required.

    3. In case of experts working for a government agency, expertise in the fields of science and technology in the targeted industries must be endorsed by the hiring or employing government agency.

    4. In case of the experts working in a higher education institution and specialized training institution in the private sector, expertise in the fields of science and technology in the targeted industries must be certified by the employing agency in the Strategic Talent Center (STC)’s network.

    5. In case of the experts working in the field of Alternative Dispute Resolution, expertise in the relevant fields must be certified by an arbitration institute in the country.

    1. Maximum renewable 4-year visa, but not exceeding the employment/service contract term

    2. No work permit required for working with an entity or government agency. In case of changes of jobs, additional endorsements in accordance with the relevant requirements must be obtained.

    3. 90-day reporting to the Immigration at the One Stop Service Center extended to 1 year.

    4. No re-entry permit required.

    5. Spouse and children granted the right to stay and work in Thailand with no work permit required (Children wishing to work must be at least 18 years. The jobs must not be on the prohibited list of occupations and professions for foreigners).

    6. Access to a fast-track service at international airports in Thailand (where available).


    2) SMART “I” (Investor): Investors in technology-based business in the targeted industries

    Qualifications and Criteria

    Privileges

    1. Minimum investment of either of the following amounts:

    1.1 Directly investing in technology-based business in the targeted industries in Thailand, as an individual investor or through a venture capital company in Thailand for a total amount of at least 20 million Baht.

    1.2 Directly investing as an individual investor for a total amount of at least 5 million Baht in a startup or an incubation or accelerator program endorsed by relevant agencies.

    The investor can invest in more than 1 business but must maintain the investment throughout the validity period of Smart Visa.

    2. The business to be set up or invested in must be certified as technology-based in manufacturing or delivering services in the targeted industries by relevant government agencies such as the National Innovation Agency (Public Organization), Digital Economy Promotion Agency, and National Science and Technology Development Agency.

    3.  In case of investing through a venture capital company, the investment must be certified by relevant agencies as being either a venture capital company investing in the technology-based business in manufacturing or delivering services in the targeted industries.

    1. Maximum renewable 4-year visa.

    2. No work permit required for working with an entity or government agency. In case of changes of jobs, additional endorsements in accordance with the relevant requirements must be obtained.

    3. 90-day reporting to the Immigration at the One Stop Service Center extended to 1 year.

    4.  No re-entry permit required.

    5.  Spouse and children granted permission to stay in Thailand. The spouse granted permission to work with no work permit required for the same duration as the Smart visa holder.

    6.  Access to a fast-track service at international airports in Thailand (where available).


    3) SMART “E” (Executive): Senior executives in technology-based companies in the targeted industries

    Qualifications and Criteria

    Privileges

    1.   Minimum income of no less than 200,000 Baht/month or equivalent.

    2.   Having a Bachelor’s degree or above or equivalent with at least 10 years of work experience in the relevant fields.

    3.  Having an employment or service contract with an entity in Thailand or overseas with an assignment to work in Thailand. The remaining term of such contract must be at least 1 year.

    4.   Holding a senior management position such as Chairman or Managing Director.

    5.  The employing companies must be certified as being technology-based in manufacturing or delivering services in the targeted industries by relevant government agencies such as the National Innovation Agency (Public Organization), Digital Economy Promotion Agency, and National Science and Technology Development Agency.

    1.  Maximum renewable 4-year visa, but not exceeding the employment/service contract term.

    2.  No work permit required for working in the position or company certified by relevant agencies. In case of changes of jobs, additional endorsements in accordance with the relevant requirements must be obtained.

    3. 90-day reporting to the Immigration at the One Stop Service Center extended to 1 year.

    4.  No re-entry permit required.

    5.  Spouse and children granted permission to stay in Thailand. The spouse granted to work with no work permit required for the same duration as the Smart visa holder.

    6. Access to a fast-track service at international airports in Thailand (where available).


    4) SMART “S” (Startup): Technology-based startup entrepreneurs in the targeted industries

    Application for 2-year visa: Foreigners who have already established a certified startup company in Thailand

    Qualifications and Criteria

    Privileges

    1.  Having established a startup company in Thailand, certified as being the ones in the targeted industries by relevant government agencies such as the National Innovation Agency (Public Organization) and Digital Economy Promotion Agency.

    2. Holding no less than 25% of the company’s registered capital or a position of a director of the above mentioned company.

    3. Having a deposit of no less than 600,000 Baht or equivalent in a bank account in Thailand or in the country of his/her nationality or residence, which has been held for at least 3 months.

    4. In the case of being accompanied by spouses and children, an additional amount of deposit of no less than 180,000 Baht per person or equivalent is required in a bank account in Thailand or in the country of his/her nationality or residence, which has been held for at least 3 months.

    5.  Having health insurance covering the entire period of stay in Thailand for the applicant as well as spouse and children.

    1. Maximum renewable 2-year visa.

    2.  No work permit required for working in the business certified by relevant agencies. In case of changes of jobs, additional endorsements in accordance with the relevant requirements must be obtained.

    3. 90-day reporting to the Immigration at the One Stop Service Center extended to 1 year.

    4. No re-entry permit required.

    5.  Spouse and children granted permission to stay in Thailand. The spouse granted permission to work with no work permit required for the same duration as the Smart visa holder.

    6. Access to a fast -track service at international airports in Thailand (where available).


    Application for 1-year visa: Foreigners who have attended an incubation or accelerator program or any other similar program in the targeted industries or received joint venture funding from the public sector or endorsed by relevant government agencies

    Qualifications and Criteria

    Privileges

    1.  Attending an incubation or accelerator program or any other similar program which is in the targeted industries and certified by relevant government agencies such as the National Innovation Agency (Public Organization) and Digital Economy Promotion Agency.

    2.  In case of not participating in an incubator or a similar program, the applicant must either receive joint venture funding with the public sector or endorsed by relevant government agencies such as the Digital Economy Promotion Agency.

    3.  Having a deposit of no less than 600,000 Baht or equivalent in a bank account in Thailand or in the country of his/her nationality or residence, which has been held for at least 3 months.

    4.  In the case of being accompanied by spouses and children, an additional amount of deposit of no less than 180,000 Baht per person or equivalent is required in a bank account in Thailand or in the country of his/her nationality or residence, which has been held for at least 3 months.

    5.  Having health insurance covering the entire period of stay in Thailand for the applicant as well as spouse and children.

    1. Maximum 1-year visa, renewable for a term of up to 2 years if requirements are met (The applicant must be a shareholder owning 25% of the registered capital or a director of the company certified as being in the targeted industries by relevant government agencies such as the National Innovation Agency (Public Organization) and Digital Economy Promotion Agency).

    2.  No work permit required for working in the business certified by relevant agencies. In case of changes of jobs, additional endorsements in accordance with the relevant requirements must be obtained.

    3. 90-day reporting to the Immigration at the One Stop Service Center extended to 1 year.

    4. No re-entry permit required.

    5.  Spouse and children granted permission to stay in Thailand. The spouse granted permission to work with no work permit required for the same duration as the Smart visa holder.

    6.  Access to a fast -track service at international airports in Thailand (where available).

    Application for 6-month visa: Foreigners who plan to set up a startup company in Thailand or engage in promotional activities for startups or Startup Camps

    Qualifications and Criteria

    Privileges

    1.  Having a plan to set up a tech startup in Thailand, which must be endorsed by relevant agencies such as the National Innovation Agency (Public Organization) or being engaged in an activity aimed to promote startups, or an activity similar to Startup Camp, endorsed by government agencies such as the Board of Investment and National Innovation Agency (Public Organization).

    2. Having health insurance covering the entire period of stay in Thailand.

    1.   Maximum 6-month visa, renewable for a term of up to 2 years if requirements are met.

    2.   No work permit required for setting up a startup based on the endorsed plan and working for that startup or participating in an endorsed startup promotion activity. In case of changes or additional activities, further approval or endorsement will be required.

    3.  90-day reporting to the Immigration at the One Stop Service Center extended to 1 year.

    4.  No re-entry permit required.

    5.   Access to a fast-track service at international airports in Thailand (where available).

    How to apply?

            The applicants for Smart Visa must have qualifications according to the criteria specified by the office of the Board of Investment. Their qualifications will be verified by relevant agencies. After technical and non-technical endorsements have been obtained, the Smart Visa unit will then proceed to issue a letter of qualification endorsement which the applicant will bring to the Royal Thai Embassies or Royal Consulates (in case of residing overseas) or the Immigration Bureau at the One Stop Center for Visas and Work Permits or EEC Labour Administration Center in Chonburi in order to file for Smart Visa.


    Procedures for Qualification Endorsement Application and SMART Visa Issuance

    1. Register for online qualification endorsement application for Smart Visa on https://smart-visa.boi.go.th and activate an online account through a confirmation e-mail.

    2. Complete an application form for the type of Smart Visa you wish to apply (T, I, E, S, and O if any) and make sure that you have a PDF version of the required documents you will need to upload and submit after the application form and required documents are all uploaded. By completing the online application, you confirm that you have read, understood and accepted the qualification endorsement requirements.

    3. After completing the online application, submit an application package (paper package) via airmail or in person either to Smart Visa Unit at One Stop Service Center for Visa and Work Permit (OSS) located at Chamchuri Square Building, Bangkok or to the Royal Thai Embassies/The Royal Thai Consulate Generals overseas.

    4. Within 30 working days after having received complete documents, OSS will notify the applicant, the Immigration, the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and the relevant agencies of the result of qualification endorsement application.

    5. The qualified applicant can then proceed with applying for Smart Visa issuance at one of the following places, within 60 days from issuance date of the endorsement letter, which will be used as one of the supporting document for application. The processing fee is 10,000 Baht per year of visa permission (cash only).

  • The Royal Thai Embassies/The Royal Thai Consulate Generals (in case of residing overseas)
  • The Immigration at One Stop Service Center for Visa and Work Permit (OSS) ,Chamchuri Square Building, Bangkok
  • EEC Labour Administration Center in Chonburi.

  • SMART Visa Extension Procedures

           Smart Visa holders wishing to extend their Smart Visas must apply for a renewal of qualification endorsement at One Stop Service Center for Visa and Work Permit (OSS) at least 60 days before its expiry for the Smart Visa unit to follow the abovementioned endorsement process. Upon receiving an endorsement letter, foreigners can then have their Smart Visa renewed at the Immigration at One Stop Service Center for Visa and Work Permit (OSS) or at EEC Labour Administration Center in Chonburi.


    Reporting Requirement

              Smart Visa holders must report the address of current residence to the Immigration at One Stop Service Center for Visa and Work Permit (OSS) or at EEC Labour Administration Center in Chonburi on a yearly basis, counting from the date of receiving permission to stay in Thailand. This can be done 15 days before or 7 days after the due date. However, in the case of re-entering the Kingdom, the report is due in one year from the date of the latest arrival.

             In addition, Smart Visa holders must also report their current status to the Smart Visa Unit at One Stop Center for Visas and Work Permits on a yearly basis from the issuance date of Smart Visa.

    Where to Contact?

    SMART Visa Unit

    One Stop Service Center for Visa and Work Permit (OSS)

    18th Floor, Chamchuri Square Building, Phayathai Road, Pathumwan, Bangkok 10330

    Tel: 02 209 1100 ext. 1109-1110

    Fax: 02 209 1199

    E-mail: smartvisa@boi.go.th

    Download SMART Visa document here.

    Reviewed: 24 December 2018

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