Carbon tax coming to Thailand

Thailand will inevitably introduce a carbon tax to promote a green economy. The timing and the scope of the tax are still being debated among experts and policymakers, the head of the Excise Department said last week.

Carbon taxes are levied on firms according to the amount of carbon they emit from producing goods and services. The tax is intended to incentivize a transition to greener energy consumption and manufacturing. Governments use the revenues raised for their efforts to mitigate climate change. The United Nations recently ranked Thailand the ninth country most affected by climate change.

Excise Department Director-General Ekniti Nitithanprapas said that there are four factors influencing Thailand’s move towards implementing a carbon tax: climate change, digital disruption, the aging society, and Thailand’s economic recovery during rising energy prices.

Ekniti added that next month, the Department will begin studying tax measures to support the production of bioplastics, bio jet fuel and environmentally friendly batteries. It will also explore ways to use tax measures and incentives to drive the adoption of ESG (environmental, social and governance) standards and practices by businesses.

Growing a more sustainable economy is a key goal in Thailand’s national strategy for advanced development. The Kingdom is promoting a transition to a Bio-Circular-Green (BCG) economic model and advocating for others to follow a similar path at this year’s APEC (Asia Pacific Economic Cooperation), which Thailand is hosting.

Other countries, particularly in the European Union, already have carbon taxes, Ekniti also mentioned. Those taxes are levied on Thailand’s exports to their markets. If Thailand has its own carbon tax, the Kingdom will negotiate with these countries to waive their carbon taxes on Thai products.

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