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Thailand: Royal Decree on digital platforms published in Government Gazette, to be effective in August 2023

The Royal Decree on Digital Platform Service Businesses that Require Notification, B.E. 2565 ('the Royal Decree') was published, on 23 December 2022, in the Government Gazette. In particular, the Royal Decree imposes obligations on digital platform services that provide electronic intermediary services with management of information to create a connection between businesses, consumers, and users via a computer network for the purpose of carrying out electronic transactions, with or without a service fee, subject to certain exemptions. However, digital platform services that are used to offer the goods or services of a digital platform provider or its affiliate acting on its behalf are excluded from the scope of application of the Royal Decree, regardless of whether the offering of such goods or services is made to a third party or the affiliate.

More in detail, the Royal Decree requires digital platform services to notify the Electronic Transactions Development Agency ('ETDA') of certain information, prior to commencing their operations and on an annual basis. Moreover, the Royal Decree imposes further obligations on digital platform services that meet certain thresholds. Separately, pursuant to the Royal Decree, digital platform services must also inform users about the terms and conditions for using the platform, before or at the time of use.

Notably, the Royal Decree applies to any digital service platform that has an objective of servicing users in Thailand, regardless of where the digital service platform provider is located. In this regard, the Royal Decree provides that a digital platform service provider residing outside of Thailand shall be deemed to have an objective of servicing users in Thailand if it meets the criteria set out in Section 9(2) of the Royal Decree; in such cases, overseas digital platform service providers must appoint a local coordinator in order to deal with the ETDA in Thailand.

Lastly, the Royal Decree shall be effective after 240 days counting from the date of publication in the Government Gazette, i.e. on 21 August 2023.