The news follows a notice posted on the Immigration Bureau official website that is marked as posted online last Friday (Feb 14), but not noticed by the public until today (Feb 21).
Lt Col Udom Thongchin, Deputy Chief of the Phuket Immigration Office, told The Phuket News today that most of the order repeals the old law and formalises changes already confirmed in September last year. (See story here.)
The latest order – marked as effective as of January 28, 2020, but signed by Royal Thai Police Commissioner General Pol Gen Chakthip Chaijinda on January 14, 2020 (see here) – repeals Section 37 of the Immigration Act B.E.2522 (1979).
However, the new order simply repeats the definition previously defined by Section 37 with the exact same provisions, as such:
2.2 Notification of moving residence shall be notified the police officer at the local police station where such alien stays within twenty-four hours from the time of moving out. In case of changing residence and if the new residence is located in the different locality jurisdiction of the previous Police station, such alien must notify the police officer at the local police station where the new residence is located within twenty-four hours from the time of arrival too.
2.3 If travelling to any province and staying there longer than twenty-four hours, such alien shall notify the police officer at the local police station within forty-eight hours from the time of arrival.
The new order also lists which foreigners are still required to complete 24-hour reporting, and lists which foreigners are exempt.
The order repeats the definitions of which foreigners were already exempt from the 24-hour reporting requirement, as follows:
- Diplomatic or consular mission
- Performing the official duties
- Investment under the concurrence of the relevant ministry and department
- Investment or activity relating to the investment subject to the provision of law on investment promotion
- 6.8 Transit journey
- Being a person in charge of conveyance or a crew of conveyance entering through a port, station or locality in the Kingdom
- Study and observation
- Mass Media
- Missionary work under the concurrence of the relevant ministry and department
- Scientific research or teaching practice in a research or an educational institute in the Kingdom
- Skilled craftsman or specialist
However, Lt Col Udom confirmed to The Phuket News today that Sections 6.16 – 6.22 of the new order are actually new – and foreigners described in those sections no longer need to do 24-hour reporting.
The foreigners no longer required to complete 24-hour reporting are defined as follows:
- 6.16 Alien, who is a parent, spouse or child under patronage and being a part of a household of Thai national or Thai permanent resident, stays in the Kingdom for supporting or receiving support from the said Thai national or Thai permanent resident.
- 6.17 Performing duty for state enterprise or public charitable organization
- 6.18 Elderly person entering for retirement purpose
- 6.19 Person who used to have Thai nationality entering for visiting relatives or returning to stay in the Kingdom
- 6.20 Alien entering for receiving medical treatment
- 6.21 Trainer entering for training athlete as requested by the government
- 6.22 Litigant and witness entering for court proceedings
90-day reports unchanged
Lt Col Udom also confirmed to The Phuket News that despite the flurry of excitement across the internet today about the new order, the 90-day reporting requirement remains unchanged.
“Regarding the 90 day reports, everything remains the same,” he said.
“Foreigners can report on online. I don’t think there are any problems problem with that,” Lt Col Udom advised.
“If a foreigner has problems with the Immigration online reporting portal (click here), they can file the report by registered post or just come to see us here,” he said.