Licenses to Import Alcohol

Licenses to Import Alcohol to Thailand in Thailand | Umpire Legal | Photo credit http://www.freepik.com

Are you planning to import your favourite alcoholic beverage for commercial purposes, or intending to supply wines from abroad to wholesalers in Thailand? Let us help you to apply for the appropriate licenses. The process may seem lengthy, but we break down the steps for you here in order to provide a clear understanding of the requirements. Applications for alcohol related licenses are to be submitted at the Thai Excise Department. Do note that different types of alcohol may have slightly different requirements.

Licenses to Sell and Store Imported Alcohol

You should start by searching for a storage space to store the alcohol that you will be importing, and obtain documents from the legal owner to evidence ownership and consent to use the business address once the rent is finalised. We would start the process by applying for a license to sell the imported alcohol, in wholesale and/or retail.

Once the sales license is issued, you can proceed with the application for a storage license. An official at the Excise department will drop by the storage facility for an inspection prior to issuing the license. Once issued, the wholesale/retail and storage licenses would need to be renewed annually, as they are valid until the end of each calendar year.

Transportation Certificate

A sample label should be prepared which must be in Thai language and include details such as the name of product, degree of alcohol and volume of the bottle. The label must also contain a general warning statement for alcohol consumption. Once the sample is approved by the officials, you should have the labels printed to be attached as stickers on the alcohol bottles.
For every delivery of alcohol, a Transport Certificate should be completed. The information to be taken up mainly consists of the type of alcohol, the amount and the delivery address. The book containing those pages has to be obtained from the Excise Department as well, and can be ordered in advance.

Required Documents

The following documents should be requested from the manufacturer or your supplier abroad in order to process the import of alcohol license application:

  • Commercial invoice (the invoice should have the word ‘Invoice’ on the top, and contain information such as the list of products, a brief description, the number of bottles in each case/shipment, the degree of alcohol, the volume of each bottle, and the price)
  • Proforma invoice
  • Certificate of Origin
  • Bill of Lading
  • Export Packing List (if any)
  • Airway Bill
  • Certificate of Good Manufacturing Practice (GMP) – i.e. a statement which verifies that the product has been manufactured and controlled according to quality standards
  • A letter from manufacturer appointing your company as sole seller of the product in Thailand
  • 5 labels (in original) that is attached to each product/bottle for which the license will be applied for (in case of wine)