Bangkok – The Customs Department has responded to a backlash against an announcement that travelers leaving the country will have to disclose goods such as cameras, laptop computers and others to authorities, explaining that the policy is not new and is not compulsory for all travelers.
Deputy Director-General of the Customs Department Chaiyut Kamkhun clarified that the requirement only applies to travelers transporting goods abroad for professional purposes or for use at an exhibition.
Such travelers can register the goods with authorities for use as evidence of ownership upon returning to Thailand. Chaiyut stated the declaration is designed to facilitate such individuals, who are often delayed by having to prove during their inbound leg that they are not evading taxes.
He asserted duty free goods together not exceeding a value of 20,000 baht, less than 200 cigarettes or cigars and less than 1 liter of alcohol are still tax free upon entry but any excess in the amount will require taxation of the entire amount.
The deputy director-general admitted that the new rules for 2018 may have had confusing language and said his office is redrafting them for easier understanding. They are to be declared once again in the middle of this month.