Minister of Finance Apisak Tantiworawong has explained that the measure will see the 5 percent of a purchase charged for VAT returned to spenders up to 20,000 baht. The privilege will apply to every 1,000 baht spent by an individual and cover goods purchased using a debit card excluding alcoholic drinks and cigarettes. The measure will apply between February 1 and 15 2019, covering the Chinese New Year Festival. Rebates will be made via the Prompt Pay system within 15 days of a purchase.
Financial institutions will be asked to waive debit card fees to further support the measure. The move will cost the state about 6 to 7 billion baht but should help raise economic growth by up to 4 percent.
The Cabinet this week is likely to consider reintroducing the “Shop for the Nation” program seen at the end of the past two years and may add rubber tires, books and OTOP goods to the list of covered products. The program would be active from December 15 this year to January 15 next year and allow for tax reductions up to 15,000 baht per individual or up to 1,000 per item. Conditions that would apply include only VAT for tires and books being returned and all eligible items having to be purchased at registered stores.