What is Thailand’s SMART Visa for Foreign Entrepreneurs
Bangkok/ Venture/ Startups

How Foreign Entrepreneurs Can Apply for Thailand’s SMART Visa Programme

Thailand SMART Visa Programme

As a nation with a relatively limited talent pool, Thailand is fiercely competing with other countries to attract skilled workers with expertise that could help in its post-pandemic recovery. Just recently, the Thai government rolled the red carpet for its 10-year visa scheme, an initiative that aims to lure wealthy global citizens and work-from-home professionals to stay in Thailand. But did you know that there’s also a special visa programme designed for expats and foreign entrepreneurs looking to launch a business in the Land of Smiles? Read on to find out how Thailand’s SMART Visa programme works.


What is SMART Visa

The SMART Visa is a four-year programme designed to attract qualifying foreign entrepreneurs, executives, and investors interested in launching a startup in Thailand. It is aimed at enhancing Thailand’s attractiveness as a regional business hub for innovators in S-Curve industries.


SMART Visa Types

The SMART Visa scheme has five different types depending on the purpose of the applicant:


Targeted Fields

Those eligible to apply for the SMART Visa programme are “high potential” entrepreneurs who want to work or invest in the following fields:

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


General SMART Visa Requirements


How to Apply

  1. Apply for the online qualification endorsement through this link
  2. You must attach electronic copies of all the requirements
  3. You will receive a confirmation email from the BOI within 30 days
  4. Once approved, go to One Stop Service Center for Visa and Work Permit (OSS) and pay a processing fee of THB10,000
  5. If you are residing abroad, you must head to the Thai embassy of your country to pay the processing fee
  6. Wait for your application to be approved

For more information, email [email protected]

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