Occupations prohibited to foreigners in Thailand

In Thailand, there is a whole list of jobs that foreigners cannot do. 
It is the Alien Employment Act that defines the rules of access to employment for non-Thai people.
There is a list of 39 activities prohibited to foreigners. In particular, tourist guide, accountant, hairdresser, street seller, secretary, many legal professions and generally all manual trades.

Occupations prohibited to foreigners in Thailand

Labour Minister Suchat Chomklin revealed: "The government, under the leadership of Prime Minister Prayut Chan-o-cha, is focusing on managing the foreign labour force of three nationals, namely Cambodia, Laos and Myanmar, especially during the Covid-19 pandemic. These workers are considered dynamic in boosting productivity, agriculture and services in several sectors. In order to prevent labour shortages and control the spread of the virus in accordance with the measures initiated by the Covid-19 Situation Administration Centre (SACC), while safeguarding human rights, the Ministry of Labour (MOL) assumes responsibility for the monitoring, control and management of foreign workers working in Thailand in accordance with laws and regulations.   

The announcement on work permits for foreign labour by the MOL facilitates foreign workers from Cambodia, Laos and Myanmar during the Covid-19 pandemic, in accordance with the Cabinet resolution of 29 December 2020. The resolution clearly states that foreign workers who receive work permits in accordance with the announcement are allowed to work in all categories, except for occupations prohibited to foreigners residing in the Kingdom of Thailand. These provisions also apply to foreigners who are granted work permits in accordance with immigration laws and memoranda of understanding between the Thai government and foreign governments. The recruitment of foreign workers and the patronage of shops and outlets is in accordance with the Ministry of Employment's announcement on the conditions for the recruitment of foreign workers. If foreign workers resign, they are required to inform their new employer within 30 days of being dismissed by their former employer.

The Director General of the Department of Employment (DOE), Suchat Pornchaiwisetakul, explained that the occupations prohibited to migrant workers include 40 occupations. These are classified into 27 occupations prohibited to foreigners and 13 occupations allowed to foreigners under conditions. The occupations for foreign workers are divided into four accounts as follows:

Account 1 (27 occupations) :
1. Wood carving
2. Driving motor vehicles, except forklifts
3. Auctioneering
4. Cutting of precious stones
5. Haircut or beauty salon
6. Hand weaving of clothes
7. Weaving mats or making utensils from reeds, rattan, straw, bamboo, chicken feathers, fibres, etc.
8. Handmade mulberry paper
9. Making lacquerware
10. Thai musical instrument making
11. Manufacture of niello
12. Manufacture of ornaments of gold, silver or copper alloy
13.  Manufacture of stone-polished metal bowls
14. Manufacture of Thai dolls
15. Alms bowl making
16. Handmade silk products
17. Buddha image making
18. Manufacture of paper or cloth umbrellas
19. Brokerage or agency work
20. Thai massage service
21. Cigarette rolling
22. Tourist guide
23. Street vending
24. Layout
25. Silk winding and twisting
26. Secretarial work
27. Legal service

Account 2 (3 professions): Professions allowed for foreigners under certain conditions in accordance with the Memorandum of Understanding between each country or Thailand's commitment to comply with legal regulations, including the professions of accountant, civil engineer and architect.

Account 3 (8 occupations): Occupations permitted for foreign workers to perform skilled and semi-skilled work, including
1. Agriculture
2. Masonry, carpentry and other construction work
3. Mattress manufacture
4. Knife making
5. Shoe manufacturing
6. Hat making
7. Manufacture of body accessories
8. Manufacture of pottery or ceramic products.

Account 4 (2 occupations): Occupations permitted for foreign workers under the conditions for which workers receive work permits and resident visas in accordance with immigration laws or memoranda of understanding between countries, including manual labour and presence in shops or outlets.
Employers and organisations are required to act in strict compliance with legal regulations. In case of violation of the law, an employer who hires a foreigner without a work permit or allows them to work beyond their legal rights will be fined 10,000-100,000 baht per illegal foreign worker.
Repeat offences carry a penalty of one year's imprisonment or a fine of 50,000 to 200,000 baht, or both. These employers are prohibited from hiring foreign workers for 3 years and the foreign worker without a work permit or working beyond his or her legal rights will be fined 5,000 to 50,000 baht and deported to his or her country of origin.

Source: Expat.com

And in general, foreigners with significant degrees or specializations are more likely to find work in Thailand. If you are looking for a job in Bangkok, do not hesitate to contact the French-Thai Chamber of Commerce for help, they will have valuable advice and can accompany you or even place you in one of the companies in their network. 

The jobs that require the most foreigners are English teachers, chefs or kitchen clerks. French people with experience in the restaurant or hotel business have a good chance of finding a place in Thailand.