Thailand is aiming to attract one million ‘high-potential’ foreigners through its new Long Term Resident Visa (LTR) scheme in order to boost its economy and stimulate overseas investment. The LTR visa is designed to lure ‘digital nomads’, wealthy global citizens and retirees who want to live and work in Thailand for a longer period of time.
The programme has faced some challenges in the first months of operation. According to unpublished data from the Thai Board of Investment, only 1,003 foreigners have applied for the visa to date. However, it remains hopeful that the visa will attract 1 million ‘high-potential’ individuals over the next five years and help to boost the country’s economy.
For a Long-Term Resident Visa to be issued, applicants must meet certain eligibility requirements. They must be able to demonstrate financial stability, a clear criminal record and a valid reason to stay in Thailand. The visa is available to applicants who wish to live and work in Thailand for at least a decade.
Retirees and Wealthy Individuals
Retirees who are at least 50 years old or those who have a stable passive income from their retirement savings may apply for the Long-Term Resident Visa. They must have an annual income of at least USD 80,000 and have invested at least USD 500,000 in Thai government bonds, foreign direct investment, or Thai property.
Those who have been working for a company or institution overseas are also eligible to apply. They must have a minimum annual income of at least USD 80,000 for the last two years.
The new Long Term Resident Visa is aimed at attracting ‘digital nomads’ and other remote workers, who want to conduct their work in Thailand. It is expected to benefit ‘high-potential’ digital nomads by offering tax benefits and other incentives that will make it easier for them to live and work in Thailand.
As an LTR holder, you will be allowed to bring up to four family members including your spouse and children under the age of 20. You will also be able to open bank accounts and have access to healthcare.
There are several categories under the Long Term Resident Visa, with each category having different eligibility criteria. The main eligibility requirements for each group are listed below:
For the Long Term Resident Visa, applicants must be wealthy global citizens who hold at least USD 1 million in assets. These assets must be in the form of foreign investments or Thai property, and they must have a minimum annual income of at most USD 80,000 for the last two years.
Those who are engaged in business activities in Thailand, particularly those in one of the targeted industries such as biotechnology, electronics, information technology and natural resources may be eligible to apply for an LTR Visa. The applicant must have at least 5 years of experience in the industry and be a PhD or above with expertise relevant to their business in Thailand.