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Thai tax agency to finalize digital currency tax guidelines in January 2022

Digital currency investors in Thailand will soon have a well-laid out taxation policy starting this month, the country’s taxman has revealed. The Thai Revenue Department said it’s working on clear criteria for calculating withholding tax on profits from digital currency trading, which it expects to finalize before the end of January.

Thai Prime Minister Prayut Chan-o-cha had instructed the Thai tax agency to brainstorm with all the relevant government agencies and then lay out clear guidelines for the digital asset industry.

As Ekniti Nitithanprapas, the director general of the tax agency, revealed, it had held discussions with the country’s Securities and Exchange Commission, the Stock Exchange of Thailand, and the Bank of Thailand. It now plans to hold a discussion with stakeholders from the private sector before drafting guidelines for the digital currency investors.

According to Ekniti, while the taxman has yet to draft all the guidelines, it has settled on a 15% withholding tax for all digital currency profits, be it from block reward mining or interest gained from the trading of the digital assets.

Digital currency investing in Thailand has boomed in recent years, the taxman noted. However, the sector was still relatively young, and it was all new to the tax department. Still, the department had been keeping a keen eye on the developments in the sector as it sought to find the balance between regulations and stifling growth.

“The department will give everyone fair treatment and wants to promote economic growth based on innovation,” Ekniti stated.

The Thai government is in full support of the digital asset industry and wants the Revenue Department to strike the right balance to avoid stifling innovation, government spokesperson Traisuree Taisaranakul commented, as reported by the local newspaper Bangkok Post. 

In this regard, the Prime Minister had instructed the department to ensure it provides clear guidance on taxation as soon as possible.

“If we rush to support [cryptocurrrency trading] without a thorough understanding, there may be a crypto crisis, similar to a financial crisis,” the spokesperson said.

Thailand has been one of the fastest-growing digital currency markets in Southeast Asia. And while there are six licensed digital asset exchanges, Bitkub has dominated the market, with some reports claiming it accounts for as much as 90% of all trading volume. As CoinGeek reported, the oldest Thai bank had bought a 51% stake in the exchange for over $500 million.

Digital currencies go beyond the traditional confines in Thailand and have become an area of focus even for the tourism industry. Following a COVID-led decline in tourist arrivals in the country, the Tourism Authority of Thailand resorted to making the country a digital currency haven to attract new Bitcoin millionaires from across the world and boost its ailing tourism sector.

Watch: CoinGeek New York presentation, Increasing Footprints of BSV Blockchain in Middle East & South Asia

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