Insights Into Recruitment Trends in Thailand - AMCHAM Thailand

 
Insights Into Recruitment Trends in Thailand - AMCHAM Thailand
Thai-
                                           American
                                           Business                        www.amchamthailand.com

Journal of The American Chamber Of Commerce In Thailand • Volume 1, 2019

Insights Into
Recruitment Trends
in Thailand

Also in This Edition:
• Thailand’s Healthiest Workplace by AIA Vitality 2018 Survey
• CSR Special Award Winners
• AMCHAM and ATF 2018 Financial Reports
• ATF Scholarship Recipients
Insights Into Recruitment Trends in Thailand - AMCHAM Thailand
2   Thai-American Business - Volume 1/2019
Insights Into Recruitment Trends in Thailand - AMCHAM Thailand
Insights Into Recruitment Trends in Thailand - AMCHAM Thailand
Contents                                                                    THAI-AMERICAN BUSINESS
                                                                            I S S N - T- A 0 1 2 5 - 0 1 9 1

                                                                            Volume 1 | January - March 2019

         LETTERS                                                       MEMBER NEWS
6        From the President                                      34    BHMA Pens Second Phuket Deal
38       From the Executive Director                             34    Scaling Impact through Innovation

         FEATURE STORIES                                               AMCHAM THAILAND
10       Insights Into Recruitment Trends in Thailand                  FOUNDATION
12       Thailand’s Healthiest Workplace by AIA Vitality         36    ATF Scholarship Recipients Talk About
         2018 Survey                                                   Impact

                                                       14                                                      18

                                                       16                                                      20
         SPECIAL UPDATES                                               AMCHAM GOVERNMENT AFFAIRS
14       2018’s ACE Winners Impact                              42     Guiding Goverment Engagement
22       AMCHAM Treasurer’s Report 2018 Audited
         Financial Statement                                           EVENTS ROUNDUP
27       2018 Report of American Chamber Of                     44     Social Networking at Hyatt Regency Bangkok
         Commerce In Thailand Foundation                               Sukhumvit
                                                                47     Managing Tourism – Ensuring Great Experiences
         LEGAL UPDATES                                                 and Sustainable Outcomes
30       Thai Government Reduces Fees for Company               48     Webster University ChariBowl Tournament 2019
         Registration and Simplifies Registration               50     AMCHAM Committee Meetings
         Procedures
32       Thailand Legalizes Cannabis for Medical Use                   NEW MEMBERS
         and Research                                           52     AMCHAM Welcomes New Members

Cover Photo: Northwest corner of Sukhumvit Road and Asoke Montri Road in Bangkok

4   Thai-American Business - Volume 1/2019
Insights Into Recruitment Trends in Thailand - AMCHAM Thailand
Insights Into Recruitment Trends in Thailand - AMCHAM Thailand
Letter from the President

      AMCHAM BOARD OF GOVERNORS 2019

                     PRESIDENT
                   Gregory Bastien,
             American Axle & Manufacturing

                 VICE PRESIDENTS
                    Daniel Abate,
      Chevron Thailand Exploration & Production
                Tibor Pandi, Citibank
    David Nardone, WHA Industrial and International
               Dale Lee, CoffeeWORKS

                   TREASURER
        Jeremy R. Osterstock, Esso (Thailand)

                     SECRETARY
                 George Hartel, NaRaYa

                    GOVERNORS                                  Dear AMCHAM Members,
        Parnsiree Amatayakul, IBM Thailand
         Herman J. Ehrlich, Conrad Bangkok
        Viboon Kromadit, AMATA Corporation
                                                               At the end of 2018, the Board elected me to my first term as President
      Jennifer Peng, Colgate Palmolive Thailand
                                                               of AMCHAM and it is an honor to serve the Chamber in this capacity.
                Ornkanya Pibuldham,
            Bank of America Merrill Lynch                      I am excited for the changes that are taking place at AMCHAM as we
             Ian Nicholls, General Motors                      modernize our offerings for the benefit of all our members.
        Jeffrey Nygaard, Seagate Technology
           Yukontorn ‘Vickie’ Wisadkosin,                      After first arriving in Thailand in 2011, I have been living in Pattaya with my
                 Ford Motor Company                            family as Managing Director for American Axle and Manufacturing. Now
                                                               that I am your President, I will be spending more time in Bangkok, but
                 BOARD ADVISORS
                                                               also look forward to welcoming you to AMCHAM events on the Eastern
      David Lyman, Tilleke & Gibbins International
           AMCHAM President in 1975, 1986                      Seaboard. The Eastern Economic Corridor (EEC) is a high-priority for
                 Harold Vickery, Jr.                           Thailand to develop for foreign investment and my experience here has
        Prem Tinsulanonda International School                 been very positive.
              AMCHAM President in 1984
                                                               I would like to take this opportunity to thank the 2017-2018 President,
                 EXECUTIVE DIRECTOR
                                                               Jeffrey Nygaard, for his tireless efforts in seeing AMCHAM through the
                     Heidi Gallant
                                                               hiring of AMCHAM’s new Executive Director, Heidi Gallant. I also want
                                                               to express my deepest appreciation for the members of the Board of
         T-AB Magazine is published quarterly by
                                                               Governors and all the Committee Leaders who provided stability during
     The American Chamber Of Commerce In Thailand              the transition period; all of you are critical to the Chamber’s mission and
              7th Floor, GPF Witthayu Tower A                  have provided Heidi with a wealth of education on AMCHAM activities,
            93/1 Wireless Road, Bangkok 10330                  history, advocacy concerns, and traditions.
     Tel: +66 (0)2 254-1041 Fax: +66 (0)2 251-1605
                 www.amchamthailand.com
                                                               The Board of Governors, Committee Leaders, and AMCHAM’s secretariat
Editorial Advisory Board: Heidi Gallant, Harold Vickery, Jr.   met mid-January for a strategic planning session to discuss charting the
                    Editorial Team:                            Chamber’s course for 2019 and beyond. The Chamber is committed
            Sarawan Dever, Meagan Anderson                     to increasing membership, enhancing member benefits, engaging
            Artwork & Layout: Phaisan Nangnoi                  more people from each member company, and modernizing our
             Production: Scand-Media Corp., Ltd                communications with our members. We will also have an increased focus
    Tel.: +66 (0)2 943-7166/8 Fax: +66 (0)2 943-7169           on advocacy, and are building relationships with many areas of the Thai
            Email: scandmedia@scandmedia.com                   government.
    Any opinions expressed in articles in this magazine
    do not necessarily reflect the views of the Chamber.
      T-AB Magazine welcomes contributions from                MEMBERSHIP SERVICES
     AMCHAM members. Articles may be reproduced
       with acknowledgement, except those taken                AMCHAM provides an array of services to keep member companies
                  from other sources.
                                                               informed and connected, in addition to acting as a conduit for new U.S.
                                                               companies seeking to do business in Thailand.

6   Thai-American Business - Volume 1/2019
Insights Into Recruitment Trends in Thailand - AMCHAM Thailand
The Chamber currently communicates with                   Student Scholarship Program, and we are in currently
members through a number of channels and on a             in search of auction items. Please consider donating
number of platforms—printed materials including           products or unique experiences, such as a wine tasting
T-AB Magazine and the Membership Directory,               or adventure experience. We also hope you’ll directly
weekly e-mail briefs, the website, Facebook, and          support individual students through our Adopt-A-
LinkedIn. In 2018, we unveiled a new website              Student program.
and membership directory for members, and the
secretariat is exploring additional tools with which
to improve our productivity. There are many new           AMCHAM and ATF FINANCIAL STATEMENTS
digital tools at our fingertips, and we want to ensure
we use the most cost-effective and efficient ways         The 2018 Treasurer’s reports and financial statements
to serve our members and the organization as a            for both the Chamber and the American Chamber Of
whole.                                                    Commerce In Thailand Foundation can be found on
                                                          pages 22 and 27.
While the Chamber continues to support networking
events, monthly meeting lunches, and committee            Although this year’s Chamber financial statement shows
meetings, we have two new series of events already        a deficit of just over four million Baht, this was expected
underway: the AMCHAM Insight Exchange and the             and budgeted in advance. The Chamber is fortunate to
Women on Board Discussion Series. The former is           have a healthy cash balance and during the budgeting
a monthly meeting of a diverse group of members to        process for 2018, the decision was made to use some
explore solutions to their business problems. After       of the cash on hand rather than increase dues.
introducing themselves and their business, members
ask for help with new business leads, hiring, referrals   Please review the statements in this issue and stay
or other specific topics on their agenda at that time.    informed about how the Chamber spends membership
Over a simple lunch, we all work to help each other       dues. Any questions you have may be directed to the
with these issues. This format is very productive and     AMCHAM Treasurer or Executive Director.
the first events have resulted in great feedback from
our guests.
                                                          2019 STRATEGY
The latter event is an informal discussion with women
who serve on non-profit boards. It’s a discussion         AMCHAM will focus in 2019 on increasing our
about how to get the most from your volunteer hours       membership. We know there are more companies that
and what this service can mean for your career.           can benefit from our services and we plan to encourage
We know that many organizations are struggling to         them to join our network. We are expanding the
diversify their boards and we want to spread the          member-to-member discount program and increasing
word about these opportunities and help women to          the number of people at each company who can take
find them.                                                advantage of the member benefits. We will continue
                                                          to improve our communications strategy, bringing you
                                                          more information digitally than through our traditional
COMMUNITY ENGAGEMENT                                      print avenues. We will continue to be one of the most
                                                          active foreign chambers in Thailand, giving members
AMCHAM, through the American Chamber Of                   many opportunities to share information, network
Commerce In Thailand Foundation (ATF), continues          and contribute to Thailand. The relationship between
to invest in the future of Thailand by providing          Thailand and the United States is healthy and the
scholarships for Thai university students. These ATF      Kingdom has a strong interest in recruiting more foreign
programs are administered under the guidance of           investment to Thailand. We see this as an opportunity
the AMCHAM Community Projects Committee. We               for AMCHAM to advocate for a better business
were pleased to see many long-serving Committee           environment with the new democratic government and
members return at the last meeting, as well as            also to increase the numbers in our network.
welcome a number of new members looking to
get involved with our charity arm. In 2018, we            Best Regards,
provided scholarships for 174 university students
with financial needs. This year’s career camp should
welcome about sixty of our graduating students to
Bangkok for mock interviews and job search advice.

The upcoming Silent Auction during the Governors          Gregory Bastien
Ball is the biggest source of funding for the ATF         AMCHAM President

                                                                                  The American Chamber Of Commerce In Thailand   7
Insights Into Recruitment Trends in Thailand - AMCHAM Thailand
18 •   American Chamber Of Commerce In Thailand

8   Thai-American Business - Volume 1/2019

AD AAM 2013
Insights Into Recruitment Trends in Thailand - AMCHAM Thailand
Amplify Your Voice through Thought
Leadership with AMCHAM
AMCHAM is seeking member submissions
for our T-AB Magazine and website.

Subject Guidelines
Future issues of T-AB Magazine will focus on the themes of CSR, Education,
and Training, and we are actively soliciting articles on these topics. We also
welcome articles about new legal and regulatory developments; knowledge
sharing and best practices; and any topics affecting the business climate in
Thailand.
We do ask that articles be on topics of general interest and demonstrate
thought leadership by including original research, information, or analysis.
Articles should not be primarily self-promotional or focus on member news;
this type of information – for example, press releases – may be submitted to
our communications team, but will be compiled in a separate section under
Member News.

Format Guidelines
Articles should be sent in editable format, accompanied by 2-4 images.
Images should be unedited and saved in .JPEG format with a resolution of at
least 330 dpi. Please include captions. Charts and graphs should be sent in
PDF format with title.
Please provide the author’s position, organization, and e-mail address, as well
as a recent headshot style photo. Feature articles for T-AB Magazine should
be approximately 500-800 words, and may be edited for length or clarity.
Contributions for the website may be shorter.
Submission deadlines for T-AB are May 15, August 15, and November 15.
Website articles may be submitted on a rolling basis.

      For submissions or
      inquiries please contact our
      communications team at
      comm@amchamthailand.com.

                                                                      The American Chamber Of Commerce In Thailand   9
Insights Into Recruitment Trends in Thailand - AMCHAM Thailand
Feature Stories

     Insights Into Recruitment
     Trends in Thailand
     By Zipporah Goetze and Richard Jackson

 2
             019 will see some game             current available databases and             Next Generation Talent and the
             changers in the realm              CRM software. The end goal for this         Evolving Workplace Dynamics
             of recruitment. Despite            relationship between recruitment
             strong global headwinds,           and tech would be to reach a point          We’re witnessing a very interesting
     Thailand’s economy has proven              where the bulk of the processing            time in the Thai labor market. There
     to be quite resilient and strong           time could be significantly                 is a changing demographic ratio of
     with high domestic demand,                 streamlined. However, this is still         the current labor force, which has
     stemming from an upswing in both           very much in its infancy, as we are         given rise to a more competitive and
     private consumption and private            still dealing with the first generation     robust labor market, as well as the
     investment. The Asian Development          of such software. There are features        following:
     Bank’s revised 2019 models predict         in sites like LinkedIn that already
     that the Thai economy will see a           lean towards such a function but            • Language capabilities of
     4.3 percent growth.                        LinkedIn’s market share in Thailand is        candidates. This remains a top
                                                significantly less than other countries       requirement for recruiters and
     AI Disruption and the Evolution            in the region – i.e. Singapore.               hiring companies alike. As the
     of Recruitment                                                                           language of ASEAN, and the
                                                For highly repetitive, low-                   lingua franca of the business/
     The talk of technological disruption       skilled jobs, expect to see the               corporate community, English
     is everywhere but very few really          proliferation of chatbots and                 remains imperative for those
     dig deep into how disruptive tech          automated interactions during the             seeking a career with any MNC.
     and the likes of hacking affect the        hiring process. California-based              Candidates without such skills will
     way in which recruiters operate.           customer interaction platform                 continue to encounter barriers to
     For recruitment agencies and               Alorica’s chatbots have already               career progression.
     professionals, all that this really        made their way into the Philippines
     means is using tech to essentially         and screened and estimated                  • Changing workplace dynamics.
     break, streamline, and subvert             100,000 candidates for their                  In overall recruitment trends, we
     conventional wisdom – it is more           overall Asia operations. When we              see a bit of a culture clash. The
     than simply taking all the work online.    speak of disruptive technologies,             new generation of workers that
                                                we should look at how it can                  are entering the workforce at
     Currently, acquisition professionals       impact the highly repetitive work             the corporate level increasingly
     tend to spend about a third of their       that recruitment agencies currently           demonstrate an entirely
     time screening candidates using            have.                                         different and evolving mindset

        PRIZES NEEDED FOR GOVERNORS BALL SILENT AUCTION
        We are searching for fun, interesting and/or valuable
        prizes for the silent auction to be held at the                 A few of the great auction prizes to date:
        Governors Ball on April 27. Our “PAN AMCHAM”                    - United Airlines / American Airlines / Cathay Pacific /
        Governors Ball Silent Auction has a goal to raise Baht          EVA Airlines tickets to USA
        two million towards supporting scholarships for                 - Hotel stays throughout Thailand
        disadvantaged, motivated and hard-working Thai                  - I-Phone X
        university students. We need your help to source or             - Lay-Z-Boy Recliner
        provide prizes.                                                 - Jewelry
        All donations will be recognized!                               - Technology from Seagate
                                                                        - Stanley tools
        To donate a prize for the silent auction, please contact        - Gift baskets and more........
        sheree@amchamthailand.com or Tel. 02-254 1041 ext
        212.

10    Thai-American Business - Volume 1/2019
from their predecessors. This
   new fleet of professionals
   have had more exposure to
   overseas education working
   environments and mindsets
   which have influenced their
   working style. Many MNCs
   have tried to act as a bridge
   between this clash of cultures,
   but the truth of the matter
   remains that this independent,
   more modern style of working
   is in stark contrast with the
   traditional hierarchical structure
   of many Thai workplaces.

• The recruitment processes. How
  we recruit new talent is constantly
  changing. Everything from the
  mediums we advertise through to
  the length of the entire process is      Richard Jackson is the General Manager of RLC Recruitment,
  being called into question.              and Co-chair of the AMCHAM HR Committee. RLC has earned
                                           a reputation as one of Thailand’s leading boutique technical &
   While Facebook and online job           senior executive search companies. RLC uses a consultative,
   boards have been lauded for             personalized approach to support their multinational clients
   bringing on-the-go recruitment          to attract and retain high potential local and international
   to the masses – they too are            candidates to build a talent pipeline.
   becoming obsolete. It’s not
   enough to simply have a page
   with text, you need strong              Over the past seven years, RLC has garnered extensive
   branding and a clear concise            experience in manufacturing, niche engineering and technical
   voice to attract quality talent.        industries, such as renewable energy, life science and
                                           aerospace alongside traditional strengths in automotive,
• Job descriptions (JD).                   packaging, consumer products and supply chain/logistics.
  According to a study conducted
  by the job-search firm
  theLadders, fourty-four percent          adaptability, and the potential     sphere remains one that often
  of job-seekers claimed to spend          for career growth are always        involves gate-keepers and word of
  only one to five minutes reading         major components of the             mouth referrals.
  job descriptions before deciding         hiring company – areas which
  whether to pursue them or not.           are rarely covered in a job         However, in today’s digitally
  It wouldn’t be a stretch to say          description.                        conscious, social, and research-
  then that the lengthy, convoluted                                            driven workforce, it will become
  job descriptions lose candidates      Social Recruiting: The Need for        easier to find out about a
  because they fail to concisely        Employer-Business Membership           company’s operations and
  summarize their expectations.         Organizations                          standing in the local community.
  In an age of increasingly agile                                              The legal changes seen in the
  talent, traditional JDs also can      While Thailand’s strict defamation     way companies are able to
  be seen as having a silo-effect       laws are in place, companies           communicate with their target
  for candidates who may be             like Glassdoor – a site which          demographic, such as GDPR,
  looking at cross functional or        allows candidates to review their      mean that sooner or later we will
  project-based work. I can safely      company – may yet be held at bay.      need to build strong communities
  say that when approaching             Currently, roughly fifty per cent of   that people will want to actively
  assignments, a job description        RLC’s executive placements are         join. This will eventually mean an
  is usually representative of          fulfilled using a hybrid approach of   overhaul of the way recruitment
  fifty percent of the role’s           technology, referral networks and      companies operate leading to the
  requirements at best! Aspects         proactive approaches to potential      use of more tech, fewer clients, but
  such as workplace culture,            candidates. Thailand’s recruiting      closer relationships.

                                                                               The American Chamber Of Commerce In Thailand   11
Feature Stories

     Thailand’s Healthiest Workplace
     by AIA Vitality 2018 Survey

     T
              hailand’s Healthiest             the risk of developing a chronic      interviewed are suffering from at
              Workplace by AIA Vitality        condition.                            least one facet of work-related
              2018 Survey revealed that                                              stress, 5% of employees have
              organizations in Thailand        The study showed that 39% of          high levels of anxiety or depressive
     are losing an average of 73 days of       employees in Thailand surveyed do     symptoms, and 27% of employees
     productive time per employee each         less than 150 minutes of physical     noted they had a lot of financial
     year due to health-related absence        activity per week, and 45% sleep      concerns at present.
     and presentieesm, compared to             less than seven hours, compared
     49 days in Australia and 74 days in       to around 10% and 27% in              Meanwhile, Thailand reported a
     other Asian countries. The average        Australia respectively. While just    lower percentage of employees
     yearly cost per organization is           1.2% of Thai employees exceed         than Australia and other Asian
     estimated at 6,169,237 Thai baht.         recommended consumption limits        countries at risk in the area of
                                               of 14 units of alcohol per week (1    clinical health. Just 7.3% of
     The 1st year of this science-based        unit = 275 - 330 ml small bottle/     interviewed employees are obese
     workplace study focusing on the           can beer with 3.5% or less alc.       (BMI higher than 30), which is
     health and well-being of employees        vol. or 100 ml. glass of wine with    lower than the 17.4% in other Asian
     surveyed 146 organizations,               12.5% alc. vol. or 25 ml whiskey      markets and 17.6% in Australia.
     representing a combined workforce         with alc. vol. 40%) and only 7%
     of 7,539 employees across                 are current smokers, more than        Over eight-tenths (83%) of
     Thailand. The study showed                84% of employees do not eat a         employees in Thailand reported
     that poor lifestyle choices and           balanced diet.                        symptoms of one or more
     mental health are issues for Thai                                               musculoskeletal conditions
     employees, which can lower                As for mental health, the survey      compared to 84% in Asian markets,
     workplace productivity and increase       found that almost half of employees   among which shoulder and
                                                                                     neck pain are the most common
                                                                                     symptoms.

                                                                                     In addition, 24% of participating
                                                                                     employees in Thailand reported
                                                                                     one or more chronic conditions,
                                                                                     compared to 30% and 37%
                                                                                     in Asian markets and Australia
                                                                                     respectively. These chronic
                                                                                     diseases include high blood
                                                                                     pressure, diabetes, heart disease,
                                                                                     and cancer.

                                                                                     Despite these findings, the
                                                                                     research demonstrates that
                                                                                     Thailand’s employers are aware
                                                                                     of the importance of workplace
                                                                                     health interventions. A total of 93%
                                                                                     of employers have offered at least
                                                                                     one health and wellbeing program
                                                                                     or facility in the workplace, while
                                                                                     56% of employees participated in
                                                                                     at least one workplace intervention
                                                                                     and indicated that the interventions
                                                                                     positively impacted their health.

12    Thai-American Business - Volume 1/2019
The “Healthiest Workplace by AIA          combined workforce of 24,187          Healthiest Workplace
Vitality” study was developed by AIA      employees.
                                                                                • Small organization
Group and delivered in partnership
                                                                                  - Public Health Center 16
with RAND Europe since 2017. The          The Healthiest Workplace by AIA
                                                                                  Lumpini
survey examines data on employee          Vitality also recognises excellence
                                                                                • Medium organization
lifestyles, clinical indicators, mental   in workplace wellness across
                                                                                  - WE Fitness Co., Ltd
health, stress, and other areas           three award categories; Healthiest
                                                                                • Large organization
of concern, with the objective of         Workplace, Healthiest Employer
                                                                                  - Phyathai Sriracha Hospital
assessing the associated impact           and Healthiest Employees and
on health and productivity.               three organization sizes; Small
                                                                                Healthiest Employer
                                                                                • Small organization
                                                                                  - PTT Polymer Marketing
    Thailand reported a lower percentage                                          Company Limited
    of employees than Australia and                                             • Medium organization
                                                                                  - Grand Hyatt Erawan Bangkok
    other Asian countries at risk in the                                        • Large organization
                                                                                  - Advanced Info Service Plc.
    area of clinical health.
                                                                                Healthiest Employees
In 2018, the wider Healthiest                (20-249 employees), Medium         • Small organization
Workplace survey,                            (250-999 employees), and             - Public Health Center 16 Lumpini
encompassing Australia, Hong                 Large (1,000- employees).          • Medium organization
Kong, Malaysia, and Thailand,                The winners of the first-ever        - WE Fitness Co., Ltd
involved the participation of 340            Thailand’s Healthiest Workplace    • Large organization
organizations representing a                 by AIA Vitality awards are:          - Phyathai Sriracha Hospital

                                                                                The American Chamber Of Commerce In Thailand   13
Special Updates

     2018’s ACE Winners Impact
     Winners from last year’s AMCHAM Thailand’s CSR Excellence awards speak on
     their projects and subsequent impact
     For the past ten years, AMCHAM Thailand has acknowledged outstanding commitment in CSR awards with
     the American Chamber Of Commerce In Thailand Corporate Social Responsibility Excellence Awards; ACE
     for short. Each member striving for this recognition has exemplified excellent work within their company’s
     CSR initiatives. For more information, please email Kittie at kittie@amchamthailand.com

     Cargill Siam Ltd.                                                                  encouraged to create their own
     Winner of the 2018 AMCHAM                                                          menu from our listed ingredients.
     CSR Excellence Special Award                                                       The competition was closely super-
     “CSR Excellence (under One                                                         vised by teachers and volunteers
     Million Baht)”                                                                     to ensure that the children cooked
                                                                                        safely and were engaged in learn-
     Name of CSR Initiative: Cargill                                                    ing around nutrition throughout the
     Cares: Healthy School Project                                                      competition.

     At Cargill, we are committed to                                                    The Cargill Cares Volunteer Program
     our community and strive to lead                                                   engages over two hundred employ-
     the private sector in nourishing                                                   ees in building school greenhouses
     the world in a safe, responsible,                                                  for growing organic vegetables to
     and sustainable way. We strongly          rich meals that they need to grow.       use in the school’s lunch programs.
     believe that every child deserves         We also encourage parents to join        This project saves on school food
     nutritious and healthy meals.             the school’s kitchen staff to prepare    expenses while providing fresh and
                                               meals, building a stronger sense of      nutritious vegetables for students
     The “Cargill Cares School Lunch”          community and easing the burden of       and staff.
     program started in 2014. After sur-       expenses borne by the school.
     veying nearby schools, we identi-                                                  2019 marks Cargill’s fiftieth anniver-
     fied opportunities to improve child       In 2018, Cargill Cares initiated a new   sary in Thailand and we are making
     nutrition, particularly with respect      activity in honor of World Food Day.     special efforts to celebrate this mile-
     to protein, which plays a key role        The Cargill Master Chef Junior Com-      stone. Our goal for 2019-2020 is to
     in developing learning ability. As        petition is a half-day event providing   extend our program to encompass
     a result, Cargill began to provide        primary students the opportunity to      at least fifty schools and five thou-
     protein and other age-appropriate         learn more about nutrition and raise     sand students. We have partnered
     nutritional requirements. Today, the      awareness of global hunger and           with Save The Children to extend our
     Cargill Cares Healthy School Project      the prevention of food waste. The        reach and further our efforts to see
     consists of three major activities: the   program highlight was a cooking          children grow healthy, happy, and
     Cargill Cares Nutrition Program, the      competition in which children were       ready for the future.
     Master Chef Junior Competition, and
     the Cargill Cares Volunteer Program.

     The Cargill Cares Nutrition Program
     provides over 400,000 healthy
     meals annually to fourteen schools
     and 1,300 students in Saraburi and
     Nakorn Ratchasima provinces and
     will be expanding to schools near
     our other factory.

      With support from Cargill, schools
     are now able to reduce their lunch
     costs and allocate funding else-
     where, knowing that the children
     are being provided with the nutrient

14    Thai-American Business - Volume 1/2019
Special Updates

     Cisco Systems (Thailand Ltd.)             backgrounds. More than one                industries and shaping the
     Winner of the 2018 AMCHAM:                million students train through the        modern world, future jobs, and
     CSR Excellence Special Award              program each year. Across Asia            opportunities for graduates.
     “Excellence in Education                  alone, there are 980 academies
     Partnership (Ambassador’s                 in twenty-five countries, with over     • Women Rock-IT, a quarterly
     Award)”                                   160,000 students.                         live TV broadcast which
                                                                                         communicates the benefits of
     Name of CSR Initiative: Cisco             In Thailand, Cisco has supported          a career in IT by talking about
     Networking Academy                        the training of 49,725 students           the types of work performed by
                                               since 1999, through fifty-                women and how technology
     Cisco Networking Academy                  three partnerships with higher            plays a key role in their business
     is a global education program             educational institutions, vocational      success. Invited speakers
     that teaches students how                 schools, public sector agencies           represent different career
     to design, build, and secure              and the non-profit sector. Apart          stages, occupations, and
     computer networks for increased           from the curriculum and platform          businesses.
     access to career and economic             that Cisco provide, we continue to
     opportunities. Through online             organize activities such as:            Ninety-five percent of our students
     courses, interactive tools, hands-                                                in Thailand who have completed
     on learning activities and network        • Cisco Networking Academy              the Cisco Certified Network
     simulations, students prepare               Student Competition, which            Associate (CCNA) program report
     for ICT careers in virtually every          utilizes Cisco’s web technologies     that the program has assisted
     type of industry. Our Networking            to create an interactive              them to gain a new job or a better
     Academy helps students build                networking skills contest that        educational opportunity.
     twenty-first century skills such            enhances classroom learning,
     as collaboration and problem                unites students from across           As technology evolves, Cisco
     solving by encouraging practical            the world, and promotes further       Networking Academy will continue
     application of knowledge.                   technology education and              to develop our curriculum to
                                                 training.                             incorporate trends such as IoT
     Since 1997, Cisco Networking                                                      Security, CCNA Cyber Ops,
     Academy has grown from a small-           • Find Yourself in the Future, a live   and Python Programing, while
     scale project to the world’s largest        TV broadcast hosted by Cisco          continuing to equip our students
     e-learning program, operating               in which Cisco experts share          with both the technical and the
     in 165 countries and reaching               their knowledge of advanced           soft skill sets that are so vitally
     students of all socio-economic              technologies that are transforming    needed in the workplace.

16    Thai-American Business - Volume 1/2019
Special Updates

     Microsoft (Thailand) Limited              Redemptorist Foundation                 in the 21st century – they become
     Winner of the 2018                        For People with Disabilities,           prepared not only to use apps and
     AMCHAM CSR Excellence                     International Rescue Committee          websites today, but to create the
     Special Award “Excellence                 (IRC), and the Mechai Foundation        apps and websites of the future.
     in Developing Smart People”               -- have provided essential digital
                                               literacy and computer science           Program beneficiaries typically
     Name of CSR initiative:                   training for over 400,000 students      show further interest in advanced
     Equip All Youth to be Future              since 2014. These programs              curricula and repeat participation
     Ready through Digital Skills              especially target youth with low        in similar STEM programs
     and Computer Science Edu-                 access to computer science              offered by Microsoft and partner
     cation                                    training. This includes students        organizations. These include the
                                               with physical disabilities, residents   UNESCO & Microsoft Hackathon
     A core part of Microsoft’s mission        of the three southernmost Thai          for Culture and Peace; and the
     is to equip youth around the              provinces, displaced youth in           Accessible Learning Hackathon:
     world, young Thais among them,            refugees’ camps, and female             Solving the Right Problems
     with digital skills, helping them         inmates; as well as NGO staff,          for Students with Disabilities,
     achieve their goals and overcome          volunteers, and educators. These        in partnership with Ministry of
     educational disadvantages in              education initiatives ensure that       Education and UNESCO.
     today’s digital economy. Young            more young Thais are future-ready
     people play an important role in          and have access to the key digital      In 2018, Microsoft jointly founded
     innovative development and Thai           skills that employers seek.             the Coding Thailand project with the
     youth are on par with their peers                                                 Digital Economy Promotion Agency
     worldwide.                                Experts predict that automation         (DEPA) and code.org. Which aims
                                               will impact or replace more than        to promote computer science
     Microsoft, together with its              half of jobs globally. Digital skills   education. Codingthailand.org is a
     partners -- the Ministry of Digital       are essential to open the door          Thai language computer science
     Economy and Society (MDES),               to greater economic opportunity.        learning website, which offers
     Ministry of Education (MOE),              Unfortunately, these skills are         code.org’s high quality curriculum
     National Electronics and Computer         beyond the reach of many youth,         and resources at no cost. Built
     Technology Center (NECTEC),               especially those who live in            on Microsoft’s Azure platform, the
     Digital Economy Promotion Agency          impoverished and marginalized           website provides a sustainable online
     (DEPA), Code.org, UNESCO,                 communities. By giving students         community where knowledge and
     International Telecommunication           access to computer science              entertainment are combined to spur
     Union (ITU), Change Fusion,               training – foundational to education    youth interest in computer science.

18    Thai-American Business - Volume 1/2019
The American Chamber Of Commerce In Thailand   19
Special Updates

     Minor International Public Co.,            beginning with the orientation          initiatives to develop the Economic
     Ltd. (MINT) Winner of the 2018             program which introduces them to        Eastern Corridor (EEC), Minor,
     AMCHAM CSR Excellence                      the company history, culture and        in partnership with Bangsaen
     Special Award “Excellence in               labor practices. In subsequent          Technical College, recruited twenty
     CSR Project Award”                         on-site training, students are          high-school graduates from Plook
                                                introduced to different job             Ton Kla project. This partnership
     Name of CSR initiative: Equip              requirements. Minor employs             provides the opportunity for
     All Youth to be Future Ready               a blended learning approach             students to work for income while
     through Digital Skills and                 following the 70-20-10 learning         studying in the 2-year program.
     Computer Science Education                 model: 70% on-the-job training,
                                                20% online, and 10% classroom,          In April 2019, Minor will officially
     Minor Corporate University (MCU),          and has developed a competency-         open the SPA Learning Center, with
     spearheaded by Minor Food, is a            focused curriculum.                     a specially developed curriculum.
     three-pronged initiative to develop                                                Students will study at college for the
     human capital in Thailand, comprising      Students are evaluated on a             first and third semesters, and work
     of an internship program (320-350          monthly basis by their direct           at the Minor Hotels MSPA in the
     hours); training programs in cooper-       managers and receive feedback on        second and the fourth semesters.
     ation with universities (4-6 months);      their performance for further career
     and training programs in partnership       development. All trainings and          Starting in 2018, the training
     with vocational schools (1-2 years).       evaluations are recorded in MCU         programs expanded to include Minor
                                                passports. Minor surveys students       Lifestyle, the company’s lifestyle
     By participating in the training           annually to assess program              brand distributor. Initially piloted with
     programs, students gain hands-on           success and identify opportunities      the brands Charles & Keith and
     experience and earn income, while          for improvement.                        Anello, this program will expand in
     earning academic credit towards                                                    2019 to OVS, Etam, Bossini, Esprit,
     their degrees. This has far-reaching       Minor equips vocational school          and Zwilling J.A. Henckels, and allow
     economic and social impact, while at       teachers with on-site training, so      students to work as salespeople at
     the same time increasing Minor Inter-      that they too have the chance           the brand stores.
     national’s pool of highly-skilled poten-   to learn new skills and upgrade
     tial employees. MCU has partnered          old ones and can pass on this           In March 2019, the “Hotel
     with over 150 vocational colleges          knowledge to all their students.        Competency Workshop”, will take
     under the Department of Vocational         Students are provided on-site           place, following up on last July’s
     Education (DVE) and the Ministry of        facilities at the college to practice   mapping of teaching standards to
     Education. Since 2012, MCU has             entrepreneurship. Revenue earned        hotel management requirements.
     enrolled over 19,000 students.             from these efforts form part of         The workshop will include students
                                                MCU’s ongoing funding.                  from seven vocational colleges with
     Students receive a variety of                                                      the objective of tailoring curriculum
     skill training and development,            In support of the Thai government’s     to meet International standards.

20    Thai-American Business - Volume 1/2019
The American Chamber Of Commerce In Thailand   21
Special Updates

 AMCHAM Treasurer’s Report
 2018 Audited Financial Statement
     On page 24 you will find the Chamber’s financial statements. The statements were prepared by PKF
     Audit (Thailand) Ltd. with the following unqualified opinion: “In my opinion, the accompanying financial
     statements present fairly, in all material respects, the financial position of the chamber as at December
     31, 2018 and its financial performance for the year then ended in accordance with the Thai Financial
     Reporting Standard for Non-Publicly Accountable Entities. (TFRS for NPAEs).”

 SUMMARY                                                     3. Other Income

 In 2018, operating activities for the Chamber resulted in   Included in this is all event activity, social events,
 a net deficit of 3.7 million Baht. This compares to a net   promotional items, gains/loss on exchange rate, etc.
 loss in 2017 of one million Baht, and was higher than       Overall, proceeds were down 28%. Significant items
 our projected deficit of 2.7 million Baht. The primary      to note under Other Income:
 driver of the net deficit in 2018 were one-time expenses
 related to a donation to the Great & Good Exhibition,          i. Meetings: Committee meetings did not result
 costs related to our Executive Director departure and             in a surplus but did achieve higher than
 new hire, the implementation of a new CRM system                  anticipated income.
 and website, higher than estimated fees for regular
 meetings (including the 2018 strategy session), and            ii. Special Events & Programs: There were no
 lower than estimated income for advertising.                       special events or trade missions in 2018
                                                                    to result in large event proceeds. Myanmar
 REVENUES                                                           Chamber is now fully self-sufficient.

 1. Membership                                                  iii. Governors Ball: The ball resulted in net
                                                                     proceeds of 2.1 million Baht, which also
 Membership has decreased in the last four years                     matched 2017’s income.
 since peaking in 2014, however it is a current
 priority to increase membership in 2019. Current               iv. Social Activities: Includes the sports activities
 membership stands at 648 companies.                                and the Independence Day picnic. All
                                                                    proceeds from this category are transferred
 2. Subscriptions & Advertising                                     to the Foundation and show up as part of the
                                                                    Foundation Expense. This was budgeted at
 Advertising revenue was down significantly in 2018.                1.5 million Baht and reached 1.4 million baht,
 Changes to the types of online advertising available               nearly achieving the target.
 are responsible. The Chamber did not collect fourth
 quarter income with the change in website and CRM              v. Miscellaneous Income: In 2017, this
 system in order to deliver on all offers within the               included a 1.8 million Baht service charge
 calendar year. New offerings are now available using              to AMCHAM Myanmar for membership and
 our new platform for 2019.                                        administrative services provided by AMCHAM
                                                                   Thailand, which we did not receive in 2018.
 Bank Interest                                                     We did continue to receive 100,000 Baht in
                                                                   proceeds from sponsorship of the Citibank
 Slight decrease due to changes in interest rates.                 Board room.

22    Thai-American Business - Volume 1/2019
EXPENSES                                                    movement from salary line to professional fees for
                                                            contract staff.
1. Employee Costs: Salary costs for three
   employees now on contract due to age have             11. Dues & Subscriptions: Includes U.S. Chamber,
   been moved to the professional fees line of the          Board of Trade and APCAC. Below both budget
   income statement. If these were included in the          and prior year, reflecting the effect of favorable
   salary line, the adjusted figure would be on par         foreign exchange.
   with budget.
                                                         12. Depreciation: On par with prior year and budget.
2. Entertainment & Meetings: Up from 2017 and
   higher than budget due to an early 2018 strategy      13. Other Expenses: The most significant drivers of
   session as requested by the Board of Governors.          the increase from prior year and relative to budget
                                                            is the Great & Good Donation of 500,000 Baht
3. Lunch Coupon Redemptions: Matched both                   and costs related to the change of executive
   budget and last year’s redemption.                       director.

4. Office Rent & Utilities: Slightly above both budget
   and prior year, budget should be increased to 2.7     BALANCE SHEET
   million as these are relatively fixed costs.
                                                         Assets
5. Publications & Media: This category includes
   costs associated with producing the T-AB              1. Current Assets declined by 3.75 million Baht due to:
   magazine and Handbook directory. This was
   lower than budget only because issue 4 of T-AB           a) 3.75 million Baht deficit for 2018 operations.
   was produced in 2018 and thus we produced two
   fewer issues than the previous year.
                                                         LIABILITIES
6. Communications, Stationary Printing & Postage:
   Reduced by another 7% and now meeting                 1. Unearned Income of 9.3 million Baht reflect
   budgeted figure.                                         membership dues collected in advance for 2019.

7. Transportation & Travel: Much lower than              2. Accrued Expenses include amounts owing for
   anticipated due to not attending the Washington          events held in Nov and Dec and paid by credit card
   door-knock.                                              and salary withholding tax and social security:

8. Insurance: Higher than budget but may not need           a) 823,646 in withholding and social security;
   adjustment as premium should be lower in 2019.
                                                            b) 1,165,726 in Citibank credit card charges for
9. Computer Service: Much higher than prior years              CSR, Eggnog and Jazzy lunch among other
   due to overlap in old provider and new. This is a           smaller amounts owed.
   one-time increase in spend that was budgeted for
   in 2018.                                              3. Non-current liabilities include employee benefit
                                                            obligations of 4.7 million Baht.
10. Professional Fees: Major increase due to

                                                                             The American Chamber Of Commerce In Thailand   23
Special Updates

             The American Chamber Of Commerce In Thailand
Annual Financial Statements And Audit Report Of Certified Public Accountant
                  For The Year Ended December 31, 2018

                                             

                                             

24   Thai-American Business - Volume 1/2019
   

   

        The American Chamber Of Commerce In Thailand   25
26   Thai-American Business - Volume 1/2019
Special Updates

2018 Report of American Chamber
Of Commerce In Thailand Foundation
On page 28 you will find the financial statements of the American Chamber of Commerce in Thailand
Foundation. The statements were prepared by PKF Audit (Thailand) Ltd. with the following unqualified
opinion: “In my opinion, the accompanying financial statements present fairly, in all material respects, the
financial position of the Foundation as at December 31, 2018 and its financial performance for the year then
ended in accordance with the Thai Financial Reporting Standard for Non-Publicly Accountable Entities.
(TFRS for NPAEs).”

1. SCHOLARSHIP PROGRAM                                    raised at the Annual Festive Eggnog Party (2017:
                                                          Baht 43,500).
In 2018, the Foundation granted 174 scholarships to
Thai students at 31 universities in Thailand; the total
contribution by the Foundation was Baht 4.25 million      4. OTHER FUNDRAISING
(2017: 174 scholarships at 30 universities; total
contribution Baht 4.325 million). The usual amount of     • Proceeds from the Governors Ball Silent Auction,
each scholarship is Baht 25,000.                            organized by the Chamber’s Community
                                                            Engagement Committee, generated a donation of
The annual FedEx Career Camp brought 43                     Baht 1.66 million (2017: Baht 1.7 million).
graduating scholarship students from 15 universities
nationwide to Bangkok in October 2018 for a four-         • The Chamber’s Young Professionals Committee
day program to prepare them for future careers.             donated Baht 111,000 (2017: Baht 161,000) from
                                                            its monthly networking events.
The Orientation Camp brought 63 newly admitted
scholarship students to Bangkok in November 2018.         • Donations received at the Chamber’s social
Students in this camp learn about financial planning,       networking nights totalled Baht 274,000 (2017:
community service, and key life skills.                     Baht 237,000).

                                                          • The Chamber’s Memorial Day and Thanksgiving
2. ADOPT-A-SCHOOL PROGRAM                                   Day Golf Tournaments, organized by the
                                                            Chamber’s Sports Committee, generated
In 2018, the Foundation received 32 donations for the       donations of Baht 880,000 (2017: Baht 1 million).
Adopt-a-School Program, in a total amount of Baht
939,000 (2017: 73 donations, total Baht 3.7 million).     • The Independence Day Picnic, organized by the
                                                            Chamber’s Independence Day and Community
During 2018, Baht 1.05 million (2017: Baht 2.9              Engagement Committees, generated a donation
million) was expended by the Foundation for nine            of Baht 595,000 (2017: Baht 659,000).
Adopt-a-School projects (2017: 22 projects) which
were funded by donations of the same amount               • Proceeds from the Chamber’s ChariBowl
(2017: Baht 2.9 million).                                   Tournaments, organized by the Chamber’s
                                                            Sports Committee, generated a donation of Baht
Adopt-a-School projects for schools in Thailand in          292,000 (2017: Baht 341,000).
2018 include construction and renovation of school
buildings, including, classrooms, provision of library    • Donations for Student Camp funding 540,000
books, and teacher support.                                 Baht (2017 Baht 330,000).

                                                          • Donations for Scholarship Program funding
3. OTHER CONTRIBUTION                                       176,000 Baht (2017 Baht 534,000).

The Foundation contributed Baht 50,390 to the             • Miscellaneous donations to the Foundation
Human Development Foundation from proceeds                  totalled Baht 41,000 (2017: Baht 10,000).

                                                                             The American Chamber Of Commerce In Thailand   27
Special Updates

          American Chamber Of Commerce In Thailand Foundation
Annual Financial Statements And Audit Report Of Certified Public Accountant
                  For The Year Ended December 31, 2018

                                             

                                             

28   Thai-American Business - Volume 1/2019
ommerce in
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                                                                                 The American Chamber Of Commerce In Thailand   29
Legal Updates

 Thai Government Reduces Fees
 for Company Registration and
 Simplifies Registration Procedures
     By Michael Doyle

 L
        ast year, the Thai                    Under the new rule, however, all         1,000 Baht of the head office
        government enacted the                newly registered companies are           overseas registered capital, with
        following changes making              required to pay a flat official fee of   the minimum fee of 20,000 Baht
        it easier for foreigners to           only 5,500 Baht and all existing         and the maximum fee of 250,000
 invest in Thailand. Some changes             companies increasing capital             Baht.
 affect all new companies and                 are required to pay a fixed fee of
 some affect only foreign-held                only 500 Baht, irrespective of the       However, under the new rules,
 entities.                                    amount of capital.                       there is no longer a requirement
                                                                                       for foreign companies seeking to
 Note that the benefits of the rule           So, using the above example of           establish a representative office or
 changes described below apply                a new company with a registered          regional office to obtain an FBL.
 to all foreign companies including           capital of 30 million Baht, the          Instead foreign companies are
 US-held companies operating                  official fee under the new rules         only required to file a notification
 under the US-Thai Treaty of Amity.           would be 5,500 Baht (instead of          form and supporting documents
                                              165,000 Baht under the previous          with the Ministry of Commerce
                                              rule). Also, using the second            (MOC). The MOC shall then issue
 1. Reduction in Official Fees                example presented above, of              a certificate with a registration
    Payable When Registering                  an existing company increasing           number for a representative or
    Companies / Increasing                    its capital from five million to 25      regional office which can normally
    Capital                                   million Baht, the official fee would     be completed within 1-2 weeks.
                                              be 500 Baht (instead of 100,800
 Historically in Thailand, when a             Baht under the previous rule).           In addition, the above described
 new company was registered,                                                           official fee formerly payable when
 an official fee of 5,500 Baht was                                                     submitting the FBL application is
 payable for every one million Baht           2. Simplification of Procedure           no longer applicable.
 of the new company’s registered                 to Establish Representative
 capital (not to exceed 250,000                  and Regional Offices and
 Baht). Similarly, each time an                  Elimination of Official Fees          3. Elimination of Requirement
 existing company increased its                                                           for Foreign Representative
 capital an official fee was payable          Prior to the rule change, each              of Representative, Regional
 equal to 5,000 Baht for every one            time a foreign company sought to            Office and Directors of
 million Baht of increase in capital          establish either a representative           Companies with Foreign
 (not to exceed 250,000 Baht) plus            office or a regional office in              Business License to Obtain
 an 800 Baht fixed fee.                       Thailand, it would first be required        Work Permit.
                                              to apply for and obtain a Foreign
 So, for example, during this                 Business License (FBL) prior to          Probably the most significant of
 period, if a new company was                 commencing operation. The FBL            the new rule changes concerns
 established with a registered                application process was not easy,        work permit requirements
 capital of 30 million Baht the               requiring the foreign company            for the foreign representative
 applicable official fee would be             to provide extensive financial           of representative or regional
 165,000 Baht.                                information in addition to a 60-         offices and foreign directors of
                                              day consideration period after           companies already operating
 Similarly, if an existing company            submission.                              under an FBL.
 increased its registered capital
 from five million Baht to 25 million         Also, under the former system,           Formerly, the general rule was that
 Baht, the applicable official fee            there was an official fee payable,       all foreign employees working for
 would have been 100,800 Baht.                equal to five Baht for every             representative offices, regional

30   Thai-American Business - Volume 1/2019
offices, and companies in                   system (not requiring and FBL) is still       Foreign directors of a limited
Thailand were required to obtain            required to obtain a work permit.             company which has obtained an
work permits.                                                                             FBL are now no longer required
                                            For example, suppose a                        to obtain a work permit. So, for
Under the new rules, however,               US company established a                      example, if there is a company with
                                            representative office in Thailand five        an FBL with five foreign directors
1) foreign representatives                  years ago, with a US citizen as its           living and working in Thailand,
working in either a representative          office representative. Until the rule         under the previous system all five
office or a regional office (one            change last year, that US company             would be required to obtain a work
foreigner representative per office)        was required to obtain a work                 permit; however, under the new
which was established under the             permit for the office representative;         rules they are now not.
former rules (requiring a FBL); and         however, after the rule change it is
                                            no longer required to do so.
2) directors of companies which
have obtained a FBL; are no                 Foreign representatives of
longer required to obtain a work            representative or regional offices
permit.                                     established under the new rules
                                            (no longer requiring an FBL),
The above rule change means                 however, are still required to
that a foreign representative of            obtain a work permit. Therefore,
either a representative or regional         using the above example if the
office established under the                US company established a
previous system (requiring a FBL)           representative office in Thailand
is no longer required to obtain a           this year (when there is no longer
work permit (although a business            an FBL requirement) rather than               Michael Doyle is a US lawyer
visa is still required). However, a         five years ago (when there was                and Senior Partner of the law firm
foreign representative of either a          an FBL requirement) the US                    Seri Manop & Doyle. He may be
representative office or a regional         representative would be required              reached at michael@serimanop.
office established under the new            to obtain a work permit.                      com.

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                                                                                           The American Chamber Of Commerce In Thailand   31
Legal Updates

 Thailand Legalizes Cannabis for
 Medical Use and Research
     By Peerapan Tungsuwan

     A
            cross the world,                  manufactured, tested, used,           of the amended Narcotic Act,
            countries are revisiting          and possessed. Manufacturers          which would possibly limit, prohibit
            their laws on the use             are also required to comply with      or restrict others from utilizing
            of cannabis. For some             specific conditions provided in the   cannabis or cannabis extracts. To
 countries, such as Canada                    amended Narcotics Act.                address these concerns, on 28
 and Uruguay, the legalization                                                      January 2019, the National Council
 of the use of cannabis extends               In this regard, the Ministry of       for Peace and Order (NCPO) issued
 to non-medical purposes,                     Public Health has issued three        an order to amend the Thai Patent
 including recreational use. For a            ministerial notifications to date     Act to exclude cannabis-related
 number of other countries, such              to impose criteria, procedures,       inventions from patentability for
 legalization has been limited to             and conditions related to those       commercial purposes. The NCPO’s
 medical use only. The move to                in possession of Narcotics            Order stipulates that once the
 legalize cannabis for non-medical            type no. 5 before the amended         amended Narcotic Act is enacted,
 purposes is a direction being                Narcotic Act became effective.        the non-patentability provision will
 debated in light of the 1961                 These notifications exempt            expire.
 Single Convention on Narcotic                certain groups from penalties
 Drugs, as amended by the 1972                for possession of Narcotics           In the initial trial period, after the
 Protocol, which places obligations           type no. 5, if they comply with       amended Narcotic Act became
 upon State Parties to limit the              the requirements under the            effective, private entities wishing
 production, manufacture, export,             regulations. Notably among these      to operate businesses related
 import, distribution, trade, use and         are:                                  to research and development of
 possession of drugs exclusively to                                                 cannabis production can seek
 medical and scientific purposes.             •   patients for whom it is           collaborations with state agencies.
                                                  necessary to use Narcotics        In any case, all steps must meet
 Amidst these developments,                       type no. 5 for medical            the regulatory controls and
 Thailand has become the first                    reasons; and                      requirements under the Thai FDA
 nation in Southeast Asia to allow            •   organizations or individuals      and International Narcotics Control
 the use of cannabis for medical                  whose possession of               Board (INCB), mandated to monitor
 use and research with the                        Narcotics type no. 5 is           and support the government’s
 amendment to the Narcotics Act,                  for medical and research          compliance with the three
 legalizing licensed possession of                purposes.                         international drug control treaties.
 cannabis for medical purposes, as
 of 19 February 2019.                         The ministerial regulations specify
                                              conditions and timeline for the
 The amended Narcotics Act                    aforementioned groups to comply
 now allows certain types of                  in regard to the exemption of
 entities and organizations to                penalties.
 apply for and obtain licenses
 to manufacture, import, export,              The amendment of the Narcotic
 distribute, and possess cannabis             Act to legalize the use of cannabis
 (“Narcotics type no. 5”) for medical         for medical purposes would
 purposes, treatment of patients,             likely have come sooner, had
 and research and development.                there not been some concerns
 The amendment also includes                  over cannabis-related patent
 provisions to allow responsible              applications. There were concerns     For more information contact
 government agencies to issue                 raised by academics and the public    Peerapan Tungsuwan,Partner and
 further Royal Decree(s) outlining            sector over the cannabis-related      Head of Healthcare Group, Baker
 the areas where Narcotics                    patent applications which were        McKenzie Bangkok at peerapan.
 type no. 5 can be grown,                     already filed pending the approval    tungsuwan@bakermckenzie.com

32   Thai-American Business - Volume 1/2019
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