Importance of Trade Disputes in Thailand

The globalization of trade exposes domestic industries to international competition. As such, trade policy measures aim to foster innovation and promote competitiveness.

Government subsidies and non-tariff barriers can distort competition, prompting trading partners to challenge policies. Intellectual property rights violations and unfair trade practices can also generate disputes.

Timely resolution of disputes helps maintain positive trade relationships, promoting economic stability. Moreover, active participation in fair dispute settlement mechanisms enhances Thailand’s global reputation.

Intellectual Property and International Trade Court

The Central Intellectual Property and International Trade Court (CIPITC) is a specialized court in Thailand that adjudicates intellectual property rights disputes. Its jurisdiction includes intellectual property infringement and invalidity issues, as well as foreign patents and trademarks registered in Thailand. Its decisions are appealable.

As a dynamic participant in global commerce, Thailand often encounters trade-related conflicts. To ensure a fair trading environment, it has established mechanisms to resolve disputes in accordance with established rules and regulations.

Thailand has been moving to implement more outward-oriented policies to equalize investment incentives between its export and domestic economies. It has also been reducing its tariffs and quotas to reduce trade imbalances, which can cause tensions with trading partners. It has been actively participating in the Uruguay Round of multilateral trade negotiations to advance its commitments.

Alternative Dispute Resolution Office

Arbitration is a cost-effective option, often allowing for quicker resolution than litigation. Our lawyers in Thailand have experience advising clients on arbitration agreements and processes.

Arbitrations are generally conducted by a three-arbitrator tribunal unless both parties agree otherwise. The disputing parties will be provided with a list of potential arbitrators from which they must choose one each, after which the institute responsible for the arbitration will appoint the third arbitrator.

The growth of Thailand’s domestic and international e-commerce landscape has led to an increase in the number of e-commerce consumer disputes. While the country has strong consumer laws, there is still room for improvement in terms of effective e-commerce consumer protection measures.

Trade Negotiations

International trade is an important source of economic development and income in Thailand. But some people fear that international trade has negative impacts, especially on their health and the country’s healthcare system. For example, drug imports are expensive and can lead to dependency.

Thailand’s government appointed by the military after the 2006 coup remains committed to further liberalizing its economy through APEC and ASEAN free trade agreements and bilateral negotiations. Among other things, it is seeking to equalize investment incentives between domestic and export-oriented industries.

As a member of the World Trade Organization, Thailand is required to comply with its agreements and adhere to international fair trade practices. In addition, it promotes negotiation and arbitration to settle disputes. Timely resolution of disputes enables countries to preserve trade relations and avoid long-lasting conflicts that can hinder economic cooperation. Moreover, active participation in dispute settlement mechanisms enhances Thailand’s global reputation as a responsible trading partner. It also contributes to a level playing field and a high standard of living for its citizens.

Arbitration

Arbitration is a process in which disputes are settled by an independent tribunal. The Tribunal is generally composed of experts in law and specialized fields. Arbitration hearings take place in private and are based on submission of evidence and the examination of witnesses. The arbitration award can be enforced in the same manner as a judgment of a court.

A growing number of trade cases are being settled by arbitration in Thailand. This is due to the fact that it offers a more flexible and conciliatory approach to dispute resolution, particularly for foreign litigants.

The Kingdom’s legal infrastructure is broadly consistent with international norms on arbitration, though its litigation practice and laws are influenced by common law traditions. It is a member of the 1958 New York Convention on the Recognition and Enforcement of Foreign Arbitral Awards, ensuring that foreign awards can be enforced in Thailand. The Arbitration Act of 2002 is a comprehensive redrafting that complies with the UNCITRAL model law, but has added provisions specific to Thailand.

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