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Mollo Tutto Magazine since 1998

Massimo Dallaglio

20 พ.ย. 2557

Andrea lives in Bangkok where she opened AD ASIA CONSULTING to assist companies and individuals to move to Thailand

Hi Andrea, tell us a little about yourself ... what's your name, where are you from and what did you do when you were in Italy?

Greetings to all friends of Mollo Tutto! My name is Andrea Dolcemascolo I am 40 years old and I live in Bangkok Thailand with my Thai partner. I am originally from Rome but I previously lived for 12 years in Venice-Mestre and studied at the Liceo Artistico in Venice.

I carried out various activities when I was in Italy, from the gas station employee Agip A4-Marghera (VE), to the manager of an ERG Petroli service station in Mestre, Manager of the Movida Cafe 'in Piazza Cavour in Rome and then to start the long adventure of importer since 1996 with India from where I then created AD ASIA MANUFACTURERS in Rome in 2000 which today exists as part of AD ASIA Group but in Bangkok.

When and why did the desire or the need to leave Italy arrive?

It all started with the persistent difficulties of creating a profitable business.

In 2003 I converted the business from direct imports and distribution to third party productions due to the already evident difficulties in trade.

All this took place with a frequency of trips of 7 months a year to India but also China, Vietnam, Thailand and 5 months to Italy and Europe.

In 2006 also this conversion of company policy began to creak due to the effect of the employees but also of the lack of seriousness of the entrepreneurs / traders who, enveloped by their financial problems, made the responsibilities fall on the supplier or my company, and from there a irrepressible frustration.

Analyzing the problems, I realized that I had to relocate to Asia more and more on the crest of the world in terms of development, I noticed on each trip I made the gap between the Italian and Asian reality, it was too evident not to attempt this change. I started opening AD ASIA MANUFACTURERS (Thailand) Co., Ltd in 2007 but after 4 months I received resistance from my partners in Italy which I opposed.

I left the Italian company to minority shareholders and demanded a change of name which instead I took to Bangkok. They closed after 2 years and I began to ride the wave even if the start up was not painless.

Why did you choose Thailand and which city do you live in?

I chose Thailand for many reasons:

1) Logistically in geographical terms it is strategic if we consider the need to cooperate with other Asian countries.

2) It is an advanced emerging country, with functioning services and bureaucratic system.

3) Taxation is fair if not low and allows entrepreneurs to grow. Growth is constant even though it has slowed down due to political Turmoil, 1 Tsunami, 1 Flood of a scale as large as 2 times the Lazio region.

4) The people are smiling, the country offers tropical dream places, the food is good but you can find everything and from all over the world

5) Bangkok in particular is international, the mentalities are outside the Italian parameters that I consider closed.

6) It is a non-violent country, there is still respect among people even if it is sometimes hypocritical but at least there is a quiet life, and then why not ... there are beautiful women which is not bad.

7) It is the land of contradictions therefore picturesque, they appreciate other cultures and innovations that can benefit Thailand. They respect immigrants (including us Europeans) and immigrants bring respect to Thailand.

Have you already lived abroad for long periods before?

As mentioned above, from 1996 to 2007 I spent 7 months a year abroad and 5 between Italy and Europe. I worked 4 months in Hong Kong and China, 8 years in India 11 years in Thailand.

Did you go alone or with your partner or friends?


What does your business consist of?

The Group is made up of a Hong Kong-based holding called AD ASIA Group and deals with financial consultancy aimed at real estate investment and construction in ASEAN countries. Another 4 companies in Thailand respectively AD ASIA MANUFACTURERS (Thailand) Co., Ltd - Renovations, interiors and furnishings; AD ASIA Construction Co., Ltd - Construction, Civil and Electromechanical Engineering, Architecture; AD ASIA Consulting Co., Ltd - 360 Design, Business and Entrepreneurial Consulting, Construction Management, Project Management, Real Estate; AD ASIA Property Co., Ltd - a company for the management of real estate properties of the AD ASIA Group only.

In September we opened AD ASIA Consulting - Agenzia Italia based in Rome and its role is to assist our compatriots in the pre-phase if they want to move to Thailand and / or do business.

In January 2015 we will open the Brussels Agency for the management of flows from Belgium and France.

How did you face and solve the visa problem?

Initially I left with an entry visa for 30 days and every time I went out for visits to other Asian countries, I was automatically renewed for another 30 days upon returning to Thailand. I was also for a period with tourist visas but having the company I immediately got a work permit and then obtained the annual visa.

At the start I relied on a Thai lawyer, now as AD ASIA Consulting we also carry out the procedures for others as long as they are aimed at opening a business and / or if they are hired by the Group.

What substantial differences have you had the opportunity to find at a working level compared to Italy?

We are on two opposite worlds! Here you work in cash and there is no credit except for short periods in the face of consolidated relationships.

We find ourselves working with well-prepared multi-ethnic companies, they work with American and English parameters, we do not improvise but we plan, we work with method and professionalism. Nobody (or except in rare cases) makes uncovered checks, there is no protest but you go to jail if you don't pay an uncovered check.

The law is fast enough if I consider the Italian one, in 2 years a case is closed after 3 hearings, the English Common Law is in force so those who make mistakes pay. There is no rule of law therefore with the possibility of having sentences overturned where the injured party becomes accused and vice versa.

The taxes are the right one, for example the VAT (Vat) is at 7%, the withholdings at 3% or 5%, the social security which is a form of health insurance based on the American model is 5% of the salary at paid by the Company and 5% by the employee. Taxes on profits of 20%.

It takes 30 to 60 days to get a building permit. To open a company like s.r.l. 15 days. Most of the management is international or in any case Thai with an international background, while most of the Thais occupy less executive roles. The Chinese and Japanese are very present but I would say that the whole world is very present in Thailand.

The sense of duty at work is very relative, we have other parameters in Italy, difficult to explain, you have to touch them to understand.

Unemployment is at 1% so that a turnover of employees has been created that is sometimes exhausting for us owners, they change jobs every year if not earlier, but this is a symptom of high productivity.

What else have you noticed about Thai society?

Solid economy to the point of being able to absorb difficult periods such as political crises, and natural cataclysms.

There is no real crisis that has an impact on everyday life, there has been politics and now what politicians have not been able to do for 10 years is being done with the military.

Thailand is a safe, non-violent country, of course the exception that confirms the rule can always happen, but crime is almost non-existent.

How did your integration into a local reality substantially different from the Italian one?

No problem with Westerners, with the Thais it took a little longer because they evaluate you based on the professional position you represent and therefore on the material part. Although coexistence is completely normal, however they remain Thai and we Westerners, there are cultural differences.

The Thais are a strange people that it is difficult to "grab", they are like smoke in the air, a wall of rubber, but if you know them and know how to take them you understand that it is part of the Thai Buddhist doctrine that can teach us Westerners many things like living more serene and with a smile.

Living in Thailand, in what ways is it better than in Italy? And in what ways is it worse?

It depends on the point of view, I can say that here you are free while in Italy you are no longer.

Here it is produced, in Italy it is not.

Little is said and more facts are made.

Here the taxes are low and there are privatized services that work, in Italy the taxes are high and there are no services even though they are public and therefore already paid.

It is hot all year round and for those who like the heat, you can go to ultra-tropical places with a minimum of expense.

Here some values ​​are missing which for us are the basis of education, however, it is enough to surround yourself with people who share certain values ​​in order not to feel isolated.

In Thailand there is a wide choice of everything and you can eat with 1 Euro as with 1,000 Euro, in Italy you can't get less than certain standards.

Fuel costs half, Kasko ¼ insurance from Italian RCA, car tax idem, there is no property tax, bureaucracy is simple.

Let's say that today 90% of things in Thailand are positive and only 10% are not ...

In Italy 10% positive and 90% No.

What would you recommend to other Italians who wish to follow in your footsteps?

I would recommend evaluating your skills first, then relying on someone who has been here for years and who can give advice in order to avoid mistakes that we all make when we think of doing everything by ourselves. To listen to the experiences of those who have already passed the running-in period.

Do you consider Italy a memory, are you homesick, what have you been missing since you've been away?

I consider it a memory, I do not miss it and I do not miss anything also because my parents and my brother are starting to come regularly here in Thailand.

What kind of work, activity or investment, according to your experience, do you think is convenient for an Italian to practice in Thailand?

Many, the profile of the person must be evaluated and as a consulting company we can really make a difference, route and assist him until he is able to go it alone.

Do you know many Italians who live there, do you frequent them?

Yes, enough but not many, not all of them are sincere, they almost have a vein of envy that I never liked.

In your experience, which location in Thailand is best suited to move to live and work today?

Here too I have to say Many, it depends on the person's profile. However, Bangkok remains the square that offers the most business opportunities.


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