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Plans are afoot within the Commerce Ministry’s Business Development Department to investigate the use of Thai national nominees in foreign –controlled companies. The investigation will focus on ten key areas where the Ministry believes illegal practice is widespread. The industries that will be at the focus of the investigation will be tourism, food and beverage, property rental, property trade, direct sales, internet retail, car rental, spas, handicraft and souvenir retail and educational consultants. These sectors have been picked out because Chainarong Chochai, the Deputy Director General believes they contain a high proportion of foreign controlled businesses through the use of Thai nominees. He says the department will stringently investigate those businesses in order to prevent Thai enterprises and consumers being impacted negatively as some foreign-owned businesses were engaged in unscrupulous activities to lures consumers.
The department reported this year it had investigated six sectors – food and beverage, tourism, car rental, property rental and sales, and spa.
It said it investigated 6,175 firms in six provinces – Bangkok, Chon Buri, Surat Thani, Prachuap Khiri Khan, Chiang Mai, and Phuket – and found 13 firms were suspected of breaching the Foreign Business Act through the use of Thai nominees