Thailand plans to legalise surrogacy for foreign couples

By REUTERS
March 02, 2024
A representational image of a pregnant woman. — Unsplash/File

BANGKOK: Thailand is amending a law to allow foreign couples to seek surrogacy services in the country, a senior health official said on Friday.

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In 2015, Thailand introduced tough regulations to control surrogacy and banned the process for foreign couples after several high profile scandals that led to a crackdown on the country’s unregulated “wombs for hire” industry.

“We will amend the law that will allow foreign couples to receive surrogacy service here based on regulations,” Arkhom Praditsuwan, deputy director-general of Health Service Support Department, told Reuters.

Those eligible must be legally married, regardless of their gender, and the child from surrogacy must be guaranteed protection and rights in the couple’s home country, Arkhom said.

Foreign couples will be allowed to bring their own surrogate or use a Thai surrogate, and those undergoing the process will need to be vetted by a government committee, he said.

The proposed law changes will be submitted for cabinet approval later this month as part of a wider reform of regulations on surrogacy, in-vitro fertilisation and artificial insemination to allow Thais, including same-sex couples, greater access to these services as well as enhancing medical tourism, Arkhom said.

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