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In the midst of the COVID-19 situation in Thailand, a new Ministerial Regulation (Ministerial Regulation (No. 2) B.E. 2564 (2021)) sets a temporary measure during the period of 1 June to 30 September 2021 to reduce the duty surcharge rate to 0.25% per month for all importers and exporters who voluntarily disclose their errors by themselves and pay additional duty to Thai Customs. Under Customs Act, B.E. 2560 (2017), importers or exporters who fail to…

Singapore’s Ministry of Trade and Industry announced that on 9 April 2021, Singapore deposited its instrument of ratification with the Secretary-General of ASEAN and became the first country to complete the official process for ratification of the Regional Comprehensive Economic Partnership (RCEP) Agreement. It is understood that China, Japan and Thailand completed their domestic procedures to approve RCEP, but apparently have not deposited their instruments of ratification with ASEAN. RCEP is the world’s largest free trade agreement and…

Since it came into force more than three years ago, the Customs Department has endeavored to impose and amend departmental notifications and regulations in compliance with the Customs Act, B.E. 2560 (2017) (the “Customs Act”). However, due to the COVID-19 pandemic and the Revenue Department’s enforcement of the transfer pricing regulation in 2020, the Customs Department is now carrying out stricter post-clearance audits and is more likely to challenge importers on complex issues – meaning…

On December 16, 2020, US Department of the Treasury delivered to Congress the semiannual Report on Macroeconomic and Foreign Exchange Policies of Major Trading Partners of the United States. Treasury determined that both Vietnam and Switzerland are currency manipulators. For each country, Treasury assessed, based on a range of evidence and circumstances, that at least part of its exchange rate management over the four quarters through June 2020, and particularly foreign exchange intervention, was for…

Further to our alert on the development of the Regional Comprehensive Economic Partnership (RCEP) negotiation (Link), we would like to share additional details about the RCEP based on the current information available. The RCEP members signed the RCEP on 15 November 2020 during the 37th ASEAN Summit. After the signing, the Thai government shall arrange for a public hearing before presenting to the parliament for ratification. We will keep you updated on this issue if…

On November 15, 2020, the Regional Comprehensive Economic Partnership (RCEP) was signed by China and 14 other nations — the 10 countries of the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (Brunei*, Cambodia, Indonesia, Laos, Malaysia*, Myanmar, Philippines, Singapore*, Thailand and Vietnam*) plus Australia*, China, Japan*, New Zealand* and South Korea. Many of the products for which tariffs are eliminated are already duty-free. [Countries with an * are also signatories to the CPTPP] RCEP was originally proposed…

On October 30, 2020, the President issued a Proclamation to Modify Duty-Free Treatment Under the Generalized System of Preferences and for Other Purposes (not yet published in the Federal Register). The Proclamation: suspends the duty-free treatment accorded under the GSP to certain eligible articles that are the product of Thailand, effective on December 30, 2020, and modifies general note 4(d) of the Harmonized Tariff Schedule of the United States (HTS)to reflect that suspension;modifies the Rates…

On July 1, 2020, the Federal Register published Presidential Proclamation 10053 of June 29, 2020 To Take Certain Actions Under the United States-Mexico–Canada Agreement Implementation Act and for Other Purposes, which modifies the Harmonized Tariff Schedule of the United States (HTS) – as set forth in Annex I to US International Trade Commission (USITC) Publication 5060 (which is incorporated by reference) to provide generally for the preferential tariff treatment being accorded under the USMCA, to…

On May 12, 2020, the Philippines component of the Free Trade Agreement (FTA) and Investment Agreement (IA) between Hong Kong, China and the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) entered into force. The FTA and IA entered into force between Hong Kong and Laos, Malaysia, Myanmar, Singapore, Thailand and Vietnam in 2019. According to the Hong Kong Trade Development Council (HKTDC), under the FTA, the Philippines will progressively eliminate and reduce customs duties on goods…