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As global and regional integration increases, multinational companies ought to navigate numerous custom-related complexities and challenges imposed by relevant authorities in any jurisdiction. This webinar series provide an in-depth coverage of legal frameworks, practical issues and key trends and developments surrounding customs audits in select Asia Pacific jurisdictions.

Customers and investors are increasingly interested in the ESG initiatives of companies before making a purchase or investment decision. This is the case in Thailand, where we are seeing more companies announce sustainability initiatives, causing government authorities to supportively respond to these efforts. In this two-part article, we will first focus on the sustainability trends in Thailand and the role of Thailand’s Board of Investment with examples of current incentive schemes and privileges that facilitate sustainability-related activities.

In this article, we will discuss the underpinnings of the European Union’s ambitious plan, the “European Union Green Deal”, an agenda to advance the sustainability of member economies and have far-reaching implications for Asia Pacific and Thailand in particular. Given the stringent environmental, sustainability, and other regulatory standards in the EU Green Deal’s Sustainable Products Initiative, it is essential that businesses in Asia Pacific monitor the targets and ambitions of the EU Green Deal to be prepared to comply with higher standards for imports into the EU.

At the UN Climate Change Conference in Glasgow known as COP26, countries agreed to advance the implementation of the Paris Agreement and accelerate its action plans to cut global greenhouse gas emissions. Along the line of this endeavor, the Prime Minister of Thailand, Prayut Chan-o-cha, announced Thailand’s enhanced ambition towards a low carbon society, aiming to reach carbon neutrality in 2050, and Net Zero GHG Emissions in or before 2065.

As part of the measures to help ease the impact of the rise in fuel prices, the Cabinet, on 29 March 2022, approved, in principle, the reduction of the contribution rate to the Social Security Fund. This new measure, once the regulations are issued, will reduce the monthly contribution rates of employers and employees from 5% to 1% of wage applicable for three months starting from May until July 2022, to help reduce the cost of living for employees and costs for employers through the SSF system.

Effective from 1 February 2022, the updated post-closing merger notification form requires substantially more information from parties, though the statutory period for submission remains unchanged. The authority’s new guidance on unfair trade practices introduces a de minimis threshold of 10% to the definition of “superior bargaining power”. A draft amendment to the SME Credit Term Guideline proposes changes to the definition of an SME. The TCCT has been conducting a law review and focus-group surveys to assess the efficiency and enforcement of the competition law, the first such mandated assessment since the law came into effect in 2017.

At the UN Climate Change Conference in Glasgow known as COP26, countries agreed to advance the implementation of the Paris Agreement and accelerate its action plans to cut global greenhouse gas emissions. Along the line of this endeavor, the Prime Minister of Thailand, Prayut Chan-o-cha, announced Thailand’s enhanced ambition towards a low carbon society, aiming to reach carbon neutrality in 2050, and Net Zero GHG Emissions in or before 2065.

The Trade Competition Commission of Thailand has published a new guideline on offenses relating to unfair trade practices under section 57 of the Trade Competition Act 2017. The New Guideline underwent a public hearing in 2021 and has become effective on 19 February 2022. It replaces the first guideline on unfair trade practices which was issued back in 2018.