Thailand’s Department of Business Development (DBD) has released a new notification to emphasize and encourage the online issuance of company affidavits and certification of corporate documents, in an effort to prevent further spread of COVID-19 in Thailand. This notification, which was announced on January 7, came into effect on January 11, 2021.
The new notification repeals and replaces a similar DBD notification issued on April 10, 2020, during the first wave of the pandemic, and notes that requests to issue company affidavits and certify corporate documents can be processed through the DBD’s e-service system via the DBD website (www.dbd.go.th). In using this online system, applicants can choose to receive the documents either as PDF e-certificates or in paper form.
The digital signature of the relevant DBD official will appear on the documents using a public key infrastructure (PKI) encryption—an accepted cryptographic practice that binds digital identifiers to people and organizations and verifies any amendments to the information or digital signature. In accordance with Thailand’s laws on electronic signatures, a digital signature by a DBD official is deemed as legitimate as an ink signature on paper.
The authenticity of both electronic and paper documents issued by the DBD can be verified via the document’s QR code and through the reference number at the bottom of the document. For paper documents, the authenticity can also be verified by checking the micro-text (which is illegible when photocopied), and the DBD watermark (which disappears or becomes obscured when photocopied). Anyone can verify a legal entity’s current information on the DBD’s website through the “DBD DataWarehouse+” or “DBD Service” portals.
The DBD e-certificate service described in the new notification is now available for public use. Even though the DBD had already introduced an online system for this service in 2020, the new notification highlights this implementation to encourage wider use in response to the COVID-19 outbreak.