Samoa provides individuals and companies an outstanding jurisdiction in an idyllic environment to form an offshore company. The islands are located near the equator, giving tourists and residents a warm temperature climate year around. The Samoan International Financial Services Authority (SIFA) regulates the Samoan offshore sector since 2005 and offers two main offshore formation products: an International Company (IC) and a Limited Life Company (LLC), both of which offer clients superb offshore products in a highly supportive jurisdiction.
Samoa does not have a negative association in the world of offshore banking or offshore financial services and is not commonly considered a 'tax-haven'. The Samoan government has enticed international investors by modernizing its legislation and streamlining the company formation process, measures which have been largely successful.
A Samoan based offshore company has many advantages over a traditional onshore company. An offshore company is exempt from paying local taxes, submitting financial accounts, and any auditing requirements. Samoan corporate legislation ensures confidentiality and minimal company formation requirements.
Belize continues to be one of the Central America’s premier destinations for offshore company formations opportunities. The country offers many tax advantages to both businesses and individuals looking to form an offshore company for either personal or commercial use.
Belize, a former British colony has a parliamentary democracy, similar to Canada, with a long history of tolerance as well as political and financial stability. The country’s legal system is founded upon English Common Law with English as the official language. The Belize government and the country’s financial institutions both continue to offer attractive financial packages to foreign investors looking to invest form a company.
Those seeking offshore banking and corporate infrastructure in a stable, affordable jurisdiction close to the United States will find Belize a perfect location that will satisfy all their financial and offshore needs. It offers visitors and residents a great climate, a vibrant and inclusive culture as well as a high level of political and economic freedom.
The British Virgin Islands has proven to be one of the most attractive jurisdictions in the world for establishing an offshore business. This British territory has up-to-date company laws and regulations that have been specifically designed to attract offshore investors. The British Virgin Islands (BVI) has an open economy that is driven largely by the financial sector, as well as tax laws coupled with a strong regulatory framework that highly favors doing business in the territory.
The BVI's is a member of the International Organization of Securities Commissions (IOSCO), the Caribbean Financial Action Task Force (CTATF) and the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD), and has been 'white listed' by all three organizations and continues to remain in good standing with all other international financial bodies. The British Virgin Island economy is the most prosperous in the Caribbean. Together with a high per capita GDP, nearly 100% literacy rate, and a strong legal and accounting presence, the BVI's give you everything you could ask for an offshore financial jurisdiction.
New Zealand is not looked upon as being a traditional offshore financial center, nor is it known as a 'tax haven', yet the country provides all of the advantages of an established offshore jurisdiction.
For those looking to go offshore in a country where English is the principal language in business and government, New Zealand has much to offer. Entities available include:
New Zealand Financial Service Company
New Zealand Foreign Trust
New Zealand Limited Partnership
A member of the British Commonwealth, New Zealand has a stable democracy with an easy to understand legal system based on British common law. This well-respected Australasian country is also a member of the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD), the World Bank and numerous other international organizations.
Currently, New Zealand offers one of the world's top offshore finance company structures. The Financial Service Providers Act of 2008, enables the registration of New Zealand companies as Financial Service Providers (FSP).
These superior New Zealand financial companies can offer banking and other financial services to private individuals and corporations around the world.
Malta is a traditional tax-based system with a number of potential benefits for foreign companies and shareholders. Many international companies have incorporated in Malta due to its geographical location, tax rebate policies and accessibility to European Union (EU) trade agreements and markets. Malta’s most popular offshore product is the Malta Private LLC.
In the World Economic Forum’s Global Competitive Index, Malta was ranked 10th for bank reliability and 24th for market efficiency (2014). Malta has a stable banking system based on UK Company law, is an English speaking country, and has corporate legislation that conforms to EU company law and standards.
Being part of the EU gives Malta credibility within the worlds major financial multilateral organizations. In comparison to other EU countries, Malta also offers an affordable alternative together with excellent services in trust management, banking, and finance administration.
The 'offshore' sector had been around for a number of years, but due to Malta’s acceptance within the EU, they have had to restructure their international financial industry to conform to EU legislation. Though 'tax haven' Malta was forced to relinquish its tax haven status and cease offering offshore companies, it has managed to attract many international companies due to its excellent reputation, low tax and rebate policies, EU conforming corporate legislation and its world class banking system.
Anguilla offers individuals and corporations an ideal, supportive offshore financial environment for forming an offshore company. The jurisdiction offers several offshore company structures, the most popular of which are the Limited Liability Company (LLC) and the International Business Company (IBC). Both provide confidentiality, security and anonymity services to its clients through a highly flexible corporate structure.
Regulated by an English Common Law system, Anguilla’s offshore laws are that has passed a total of five pieces of legislation covering the breadth of the islands offshore financial market. Allowing for minimal local and reporting requirements, Anguilla’s regulations are geared to attract international investors. These provide offshore companies the freedom to move and conduct business free from administrative paperwork and complicated financial and auditing practices.
With taxes only being levied against members in their country of residence, Anguilla is a true tax-free zone. Only one member is required to incorporate a company and can be formed very quickly at highly competitive rates. Anguilla international companies give clients a flexible corporate management structure giving companies the freedom to customize their business organization according to their needs.
Lastly, Anguilla offshore regulations provide clients with nominee services together with no financial auditing or reporting necessary, adding another layer of confidentiality and privacy to an already outstanding offshore environment.
As an offshore jurisdiction, Panama offers excellent advantages. Panama continues to top the list of the best places to live, particularly for expats looking for a lively, modern country in which to retire, with all the comforts of home and the idyllic allure of the tropics.
The ever-increasing creation of jobs in Panama’s thriving economy leaves the country longing for a larger and better-trained workforce than Panamanians alone can satisfy. Looking to attract the international community, the government has developed incentives for entrepreneurs, multinationals and expats to satisfy this growing demand.
Panama has very favorable laws for establishing offshore legal entities for sovereign individuals from countries around the world.
UAE has a highly stable system of government, a modern infrastructure, and is one of the wealthiest countries on a per capita basis on the planet.
Offshore investors will find the country's open economy and highly favorable tax laws quite attractive. Particularly noteworthy is the presence of many of the worlds' major banks and the surprising level of banking privacy that is available with no OECD mandated tax information sharing treaties
Outpacing Dubai as the offshore choice in the UAE, the RAK offshore financial center has become the leading destination for foreign investors, companies and individuals, due to its ease of incorporation, low costs and flexibility. It is governed by the Ras Al Khaimah Investment Authority (RAKIA), which was set up as a free zone in 2006.
As an offshore jurisdiction, Dominica has much to offer. As a place to live or visit, this mountainous island is known for its unparalleled beauty.
The rules and regulations by which a Dominica offshore company can be established and operated are very favorable, include solid privacy laws and a highly-streamlined process for setting up a Dominica International Business Company (IBC).
Additionally, it may be possible to obtain a Dominica offshore banking licence as the government is keen to develop its financial sector.
Last, but not least, Dominica has the world’s least expensive official economic citizenship program, giving expatriates the opportunity to be granted Dominican citizenship.
Referred to as St. Vincent or SVG, this small but mighty sovereign nation is one of only three countries in the world with general financial privacy laws, which are aimed at protecting against disclosure of confidential information to any other jurisdiction in the world. Release of confidential information is strictly prohibited and only permitted in cases where criminal legal action (as determined by laws of both the foreign jurisdiction and St. Vincent) is underway against an offender in another country. In no way are disclosures allowed simply due to infringements of a jurisdiction’s tax code or revenue regulations.
St. Vincent is an active member in a number of international organizations including the World Trade Organization, the International Monetary Fund, and the World Bank, as well as being a member of several regional organizations. The country has strong economic ties with the United States, Canada, China, members of the European Community and other countries in the Eastern Caribbean.
For those seeking a sovereign overseas jurisdiction offering the strictest secrecy and confidentiality advantages over other countries, St. Vincent may be just the right place.
The independent democratic republic of Seychelles, with its stable political system, offers one of the most attractive complete offshore packages, created and supported by one of the most auspicious legal and regulatory authorities in the offshore global arena.
Seychelles diligently encourages local and foreign investment; thus it offers:
Low government fees
Tax-resident low-tax and non-resident tax free structures
A growing matrix of tax treaties used for investment into other countries
An international trade zone
Located approximately 1000 miles east of Africa, Seychelles is not in the cyclone belt, giving it an advantage over other natural disaster-prone jurisdictions, such as Mauritius and all of the Caribbean territories.
Seychelles keeps on flourishing as a global offshore financial center. With its efficacy and command of the offshore industry, its broad range of offshore products and services, and its devotion to persistent innovation, Seychelles is poised to be the premier choice in the offshore world.
If you are looking for a tax haven with a solid secrecy policy, attractive offshore business laws, Seychelles may be the perfect choice for your next offshore company formation.
St. Lucia offers a wide range of offshore banking and financial products and services. Enabled by the International Business Companies Act 1999, the diversity of the offshore sector is drawing many international investors and companies, making the relatively unknown island a new and exciting place to form an offshore company.
Offshore financial services offered by St. Lucia include the establishment of offshore trusts, mutual fund companies, insurance companies, and offshore bank accounts and formation opportunities offering an unprecedented array of possibilities to diversify one’s international offshore business portfolio. Not only does the island maintain absolute confidentiality of its clients details, but ensures complete anonymity and security for all its offshore company formation services.
St. Lucia’s financial system has never been blacklisted and has escaped international scrutiny and foreign governmental pressure to disclose details of its offshore financial operations. Unlike many jurisdictions within the Caribbean, St. Lucia still remains a paradise for international investors seeking safe and reliable offshore opportunities.
Tax havens are low-tax or tax-free countries with laws that maximize personal and banking privacy while minimizing taxation and regulatory interference for individuals and corporations. Often misspelled as 'tax heavens', these offshore jurisdictions specialize in furnishing financial, legal and business services to non-resident offshore companies, and provide investing opportunities for offshore capital.
Although financial regulations are typically enacted with the best of intentions, they tend to make business more complicated than it needs to be for some investors and businesses. Many offshore financial centres have responded to these concerns about regulations by adapting a more business-friendly regulatory structure.
Many states and nations design their policies with the goal of attracting business from foreign investors who want to be as tax-efficient as possible. These countries have tax policies and bodies of corporate law which provide a good financial climate for large investors and corporations who want to minimize tax exposure and regulatory interference. The state of Delaware in the US, for example, drew business to it in the early 1900's by enacting laws that made it far easier to form and manage a corporation.
Tax haven countries that top the list for the efficient corporate legal structure include Panama and the British Virgin Islands. Other nations on that list, which have also made a name for themselves by building business-friendly regulatory structures, include Nevis, Mauritius and Seychelles, to name a few.
Many investors place a high value on the security of their funds, which is not always respected by their home countries. Although this is not true of all offshore financial centres, nations such as the Bahamas, St. Vincent, Seychelles, Belize and Mauritius have designed their privacy laws with the concerns of foreign investors in mind.
Because privacy laws are constantly shifting in this day and age, it is frequently wise to speak with an advisor about selecting an offshore financial center based on privacy concerns.
An offshore financial centre can be concisely described as a state or nation which has designed its laws in a way that attracts business investors. Some nations make it easy to manage corporations founded in their jurisdiction; others have an especially sensible regulatory structure or stringent privacy laws.
When selecting a suitable tax haven country, be sure to consider all of your investments’ unique needs. With Capstone, we are poised to help you identify these needs and subsequently develop an offshore market strategy that maximizes profitability and long-term success.
Selecting a tax haven country is an integral part of establishing an offshore structure or financial account. The jurisdiction that you choose should have at the very minimum, the following 10 characteristics:
A Full Fledged Tax Haven - no capital gains tax, no interest income tax, no inheritance tax, etc.
Favorable Incorporation Laws - the corporate laws of the country should enable you to hold 'Bearer Shares', have directors from any country, inexpensive, and be able to incorporate Private Interest Foundations.
Stable Currency With No Currency Restriction Regulations - there should be no restrictions on the movement of funds in or out of the country.
Strict Privacy Laws - there should be strict privacy laws that protect your banking information and corporate book information from anyone, including foreign governments.
Stable Government - the government of the country should be stable and should use the opposite legal system of your domestic country (if your country uses common law, you should seek a country that uses roman law). The country should be safe to visit.
Stable Economy - the economy of the country should be stable.
Excellent Banking System - the banking system of the country should be advanced both in areas of banking infrastructure, government auditing, and technology.
Excellent Communications System - the communications systems of the country should be technologically advanced in comparison with first world countries.
Language Compatibility - the language of the country should be suitable for your understanding.
Time Zone Compatibility & Close Location - the time zone of the country should be such that you can contact your offshore provider or financial institution during your normal domestic business hours & fly to the country quickly if necessary to handle business.
Capston Consulting specializes in asset protection through the formation and administration of structures set up in multiple tax haven countries, which include anonymous corporations, IBCs, foundations, trusts, bank accounts and other vehicles. We believe the strongest offshore structure is one that takes advantage of a multi-jurisdictional approach, one designed specifically to meet your business and banking needs.
Therefore, although we can incorporate in almost any jurisdiction, the following have special appeal:
One tax haven country cannot do it all, however! Panama offers the best all-around option of any jurisdiction, for reasons of cost effectiveness, privacy and flexibility. It is closely followed by Belize.
Other popular offshore jurisdictions such as the Cayman Islands, Anguilla and the Channel Isles are beginning to see the troubles associated with their lack of true independence and association with the EU by proxy of the UK. These and others have succumbed to pressure from the EU, UK and USA in recent years.
Some have adopted undesirable measures; signed information exchange agreements, mutual legal assistance treaties; and tax information exchange agreements which are largely one-sided agreements in favor of the larger countries.
In fact, many of these island jurisdictions, such as the Caymans, contain clauses at the end of their respective constitutions which essentially give the British Crown, through its proxy Governor, the right to enact laws and regulations without any vote at all.
Even though many of these jurisdictions would not be considered privacy jurisdictions in the same way as Belize or Panama, we can tailor solutions that utilize nominees, along with Panama foundations or Belize trusts that will provide maximum anonymity where legitimate business reasons require it.
We have agents in almost every other major offshore jurisdiction, so if you have special jurisdictional requirements or preferences outside of these that are listed in this site, please contact us and we will give you the pros and cons of your choice(s).
Peruse the offshore tax haven list above and be sure to Contact us if you have questions regarding the offshore business structure that's right for you.