Thailand allows foreigners to own land hinh anh 1In Phuket, Thailand (Photo: Internet)
October 26 (VNA) - Thailand’s cabinet on October 25 approved the Interior Ministry's proposal to allow foreigners to hold land ownership of up to one rai (roughly 0.16 hectares) for residential purposes.

According to Thai government spokesman Anucha Burapachaisri, the weekly cabinet meeting approved in principle a draft regulation of the Interior Ministry regarding land ownership by foreigners, allowing four groups of rich foreign nationals to buy and own land.

The proposal marks a departure from long-standing laws limiting land and property purchases, except condominiums, to Thais or people married to Thais.

The Thai government estimates the scheme will inject more than 1 trillion THB into the economy, with an uptick of 800 billion THB in investment and 270 billion THB through revenue collection.

According to Anucha, the land slated for foreign ownership should be located in Bangkok, the Pattaya area, the municipalities of all provinces nationwide, and areas stipulated as residential zones according to the Town and Country Planning Act.

Qualified foreign nationals must invest 40 million THB (over 1 million USD) in Thai property, securities or funds to participate in the scheme. If participants withdraw their investment before the designated period, their land ownership rights must be revoked, and the scheme would be reviewed after five years.

Thailand may be headed for trouble involving land speculation, meaning locals may be unable to afford to purchase land because of higher prices, said Tanit Sorat, vice chairman of the Employers' Confederation of Thai Trade and Industry, who disagrees with this decision./.