Bank of Thailand Permits Non-Bank Operators to Provide E-Money Services in Foreign Currencies

Non-bank operators of fintech and digital money services can now apply for licenses permitting them to conduct foreign exchange services in Thailand. Since 26 June 2020, the Bank of Thailand (“BOT”) has started taking in applications lodged by service providers that wish to conduct such activities in the country.

According to a press release published by the BOT, applicants must be Thai entities holding an Electronic Money Service Business license with a minimum registered paid-up capital of THB 100 million. It also mentioned that applicants should be reputable businesses that have a proven track record of financial stability.

Interested businesses seeking to obtain the license must submit their application to the BOT, which it will then forward to the Ministry of Finance for final approval. The process is estimated to take around 60 days.

With a foreign exchange e-Money (“FX e-Money”) license, non-bank operators will be able to issue e-money in foreign currencies which will allow customers to conduct international payments for goods and services, namely when traveling or making purchases from e-commerce platforms. Through this regulation, the BOT hopes to encourage non-bank players to play a bigger role in Thailand’s fintech industry as a way of promoting the use of e-money in the country and to stimulate its transition towards a digital society. This regulation is also part of the BOT’s Foreign Exchange Regulation Reform which aims to better facilitate foreign exchange transactions and ease of doing business.

For those interested in submitting an application for the FX e-Money license or simply require more information about this new regulation, you can contact us at [email protected].