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Financial records provide a true and fair view of a company’s financial situation, and it is essential that companies registered in Thailand follow the accounting requirements set out in the accounting standards, accounting act and other provisions.
In this article, we will provide a fundamental introduction to accounting in Thailand and break down accounting requirements companies must meet to stay compliant.
Accounting standards in Thailand
The accounting standards in Thailand are known as the Thailand Financial Reporting Standards (TFRS). The TFRS is a set of rules that are required to be applied when preparing and presenting financial statements of publicly accountable entities.
For non-publicly accountable entities (NPAEs), the TFRS for NPAEs are applied. However, NPAEs can elect to apply the TFRS.
Small- and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) can use one of the two accounting standards:
- TFRS for NPAEs
The TFRS and TFRS for NPAEs are based on the International Financial Reporting Standards (IFRS).
Foreign companies are allowed to apply the IFRS Standards.
What is a non-publicly accountable entity?
A non-publicly accountable entity is an entity that is not the following entities:
- Having equity instruments or bonds traded in a public market (a domestic or foreign stock exchange or an over-the-counter market) or an entity in the process of submitting financial statements to securities
- An entity which primary business is holding assets in a fiduciary capacity for a broad group of outsiders, such as financial institutions, insurance companies, securities companies and mutual funds
- Public companies
- Other entities that may be specified in the future
Essential accounting compliance requirements for Thai companies
Financial year-end for Thailand companies
By default, the financial year-end for companies registered in Thailand is 31 December.
The accounting period lasts 12 months, however, a company that is newly incorporated, a company in the year of dissolution, or has changed its accounting method can have an accounting period of less than 12 months.
Companies are allowed to change their accounting period. In order to do so, the company must file a request and obtain a written approval from the Director General of the Revenue Department.
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The company accounts have to be drafted according to the Thai Accounting Standards formulated by the Institute of Certified Accountants and Auditors of Thailand, and should reflect a true and correct image of the company’s expenses and assets.
The balance sheet — an overview of the assets and liabilities — and the profit and loss accounts have to be prepared and filed at the end of each period and the accounts and other relevant company documents have to be kept at the company’s registered address for at least five years from the date of closing their closing (depending on the company’s business activity, this may be extended to seven years by the Revenue Department.)
Documents, records and statements companies must keep required include:
- Accounting journal
- Statement of accounts
- Records of payment and receipts
- Profit and loss statements
- Balance sheets
- Records of electronic funds transfer
- Credit card transactions
- Bank statements, including cheque records
- Internal or external audit reports
The financial statements, accounts and documents must be recorded in the Thai language, or in a foreign language accompanied by the Thai language, written in ink, typewritten or printed. There’s Companies can opt for monthly bookkeeping or they can prepare their books and necessary reports once a year at the end of the financial year.
Annual financial statements
Financial statements are written records that convey the business activities and the financial performance of a company. Financial statements are often audited by government agencies, accountants, firms, etc. to ensure accuracy and for tax, financing, or investing purposes.
The financial statements of a Thai company include:
- Statement of financial position
- Profit and loss statement
- Statement of changes equity
- Cash flow statement
- Notes to the financial statement
The following information must be included in the notes to the financial statement:
- Criteria of the preparation of the financial statements
- Description of the accounting policies
- Additional information of the balance sheet, income statement, cash flow statement and statement of changes in equity
Annual auditing of financial statements
All companies are required to prepare financial statements which must be audited and certified by an independent certified auditor at the end of the fiscal year, regardless of whether the company is traded or not.
The auditor must offer their opinion on the financial statements as the audit opinion is required when submitting the financial statements and tax returns.
For a private and public limited company, the board of directors must arrange the annual shareholders’ meeting to approve the audited documents within four months of the end of the fiscal year. The approved documents, along with supporting documents, including the list of shareholders, must be submitted to the Revenue Department and the Commercial Registrar within one month after the shareholder meeting. Failure to comply with these regulations may result in a penalty up to 200,000 THB.
Public limited companies must also publish the balance sheet in a newspaper for at least one day within one month after it was approved at the shareholders’ meeting.
A foreign company (branch office, representative office or regional office) must submit a copy of the financial statement to the MOC no later than 150 days after the end of the fiscal year. Approval of the shareholder meeting is not required.
Both private and public limited companies must provide the following documents at the end of each accounting period:
- Audited financial statement
- Balance sheet
- Company name
- Detail of directors
- List of shareholders
- Minutes of the annual meeting
- Profit and loss accounts
- Type of business
The documents must be prepared in the Thai language.
Foreign companies can prepare their documents in a foreign language, but the Thai translation must be attached.
To know more about the tax accounting and compliance requirements in Thailand, visit our Taxation in Thailand guide where we cover this topic in detail.
Accounting is an important element of the company; therefore, it is necessary you ensure that the company’s financial statements and documents are accurate.
To manage your bookkeeping and financial statements, we recommend outsourcing your accounting to Acclime, we have a team of certified accountants who will take care of your books and records.
Acclime is Asia’s premier tech-enabled professional services firm. We provide formation, accounting, tax, HR and advisory services, focusing on delivering high-quality outsourcing and consulting services to our local and international clients in Thailand and beyond.