Offshore Company Options

Last updated 01 May 2019

 

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Belize Company

Belize is one of the most popular tax-free jurisdictions and is perfect for individuals, or businesses, to set up a Belize company or any type of tax planning or international investments. Belize became a British Crown Colony in the year 1862 and achieved independence in 1981.

The government of Belize is wholly committed to the ongoing development of Belize as a leading offshore jurisdiction for the incorporation of offshore companies. Offshore company incorporation in Belize is not difficult and it is highly effective when it comes to securing privacy and overall tax reduction planning.

Benefits

Being a popular offshore jurisdiction, there are obviously certain benefits of forming an offshore Belize company.

  • The names and identities of the directors and shareholders of the company are keep 100% confidential
  • Nominee directors and shareholders can be appointed
  • Belize company or international business companies in Belize has a high level of security and privacy
  • Reporting is not necessary
  • No accounting restrictions placed on offshore Belize companies
  • Investment and business can be conducted in any country
  • Exemption from stamp duties
  • Exemption from all taxes
  • Political and economic stability
  • Legal system is based on English Company Law

Incorporation

Belize is a popular offshore jurisdiction and these are the basics of what you will need to do to incorporate an offshore Belize company. Belize has a streamlined incorporation process that makes company formation quick and easy. This is one of the reasons that Belize is a popular jurisdiction for offshore company formation.

  • The Memorandum of Association will need to be submitted by a Belize registered agent to the government registry office
  • Registration fees
  • You will need to submit 3 (three) possible names of your choice for the company. The names should not be similar to or identical to an existing company.
  • You will need to have at least one director. In general Belize requires only one director and one shareholder and the director and shareholder can be the same person.

Cost Involved In Company Formation In Belize

The following are the cost involved in incorporating a Belize company:

  • Offshore Belize company incorporation fee
  • Initial licensing fee
  • Post incorporation structure fees
  • Disbursements
  • Annual compliance fee
  • Annual statutory fee
  • Annual license fee

With regular consultation with the private sector, the Belizean government ensures that its legislation and policies continue to line up with the interests and needs of the international business community. Belize is an offshore jurisdiction that engenders confidence and trust.

You can contact us and speak to our financial advisor about forming an offshore Belize company.

BVI Business Companies

Forming BVI business companies has become a popular trend for investors and businesspersons in the recent years. Offshore company formation is one of the best ways to promote foreign development and to a certain extent offshore companies can reduce operating costs and help save on tax charges.

Some of the popular jurisdictions for incorporating offshore business companies are the British Virgin Islands, Anguilla, Bahamas, Nevada, Bermuda, Mauritius, Delaware, Seychelles, Singapore, the Cayman Islands and many more other places. BVI business companies are not required to pay tax, there is no foreign exchange controls to worry about and information required to start the company is very minimal. The British Virgin Islands is a member of the British Commonwealth and its legal system is based on English Common Law.

Benefits

Forming BVI business companies will entitle you to the following benefits;

  • Low taxes and low operating costs
  • Less tax control on limited companies
  • BVI business companies can be exempted from stamp duty and all local taxes
  • Excellent privacy protection. Information of the directors of BVI business companies are held strictly confidential. Identity of shareholders is also kept confidential.
  • Safety of assets and convenience of asset transfer
  • Stable economy
  • Offshore companies can open bank accounts anywhere in the world
  • Ease of operation
  • No requirement to hold annual general meeting
  • No requirement to submit audited accounts
  • Shares of the company can be on free sale
  • Maximum security of assets including the ability to transfer domicile
  • Assets can be transferred to another trust, company, foundation, partnership or association thereby protecting the company’s assets
  • Wide range of applications such as; investment, financial management, property holding, trading, licensing and copyrighting.
  • No minimum capitalization regulations
  • No prohibitive license fees

BVI Business Companies Formation

The following are the steps to form BVI business companies:

  • Memorandum of Articles of Association
  • Certificate of incorporation
  • Company seal
  • Corporate name

The word Corporation, Limited, incorporated Sociedad Anonima, Societe Anonyme, or the abbreviation Corp, Ltd, S.A., or Inc must be part of the name of the BVI business company.

  • The registered office address of the company should be located in the BVI. However, the business address or the principal office address may be in any country.
  • The local registered agent of the BVI business company should be authorised by the BVI government
  • A minimum of one director and one shareholder is required for the formation of a BVI business company
  • Posts of president, treasurer and secretary are mandatory. The same person may be the president, treasurer and secretary.
  • There is no authorised capital. However, if the company is authorised to issue up to 50,000 shares, a government fee of $350 is required to be paid. If shares exceeding 50,000 are to be issued by the company, then the government fee will be $1,100.
  • BVI business companies limited by guarantee with no issue of shares will be required to pay the government fee of $350
  • An unlimited company authorised to issue shares will also be required to pay the government fee of $350
  • Though there is no set capital amount, agencies recommend a standard capital of $50,000
  • Fill in the online forms that the firm handling your registration has sent to you
  • Provide proof of identification like your passport or utility bill not more than 3 months old
  • Send your shareholder’s identification, contact details and bank statements

The incorporation process for BVI business companies is not complicated. You can contact us and speak to our reputed financial advisor if you need more information on forming an offshore company in the BVI.

BVI Company

A BVI Company, also known as a British Virgin Islands Company, is one of the best offshore companies to form. One of the reasons for this type of formation is the privacy laws that the country uses.

All offshore jurisdictions have enacted privacy laws that make it an offense for any personal information to be disclosed to a third party, unless it has been ordered otherwise by the courts for criminal or terrorist activity. To make things even more confidential the British Virgin Islands does not require any forms to be filed for the business, including financial statements or other accounting forms, as well as organizational forms.

Will I Be Required To Pay Taxes

Offshore companies are popular because of the tax advantages they provide. Like many other jurisdictions the British Virgin Islands is one of the popular jurisdictions for offshore companies. Starting a BVI company in the British Virgin Islands does not require payment of any local taxes or stamp duties. A BVI business company is also exempt from income tax, interests, royalties, rents, interests, compensations and any other amounts that are normally paid by a company.

BVI Company – Why Is It Popular?

Some of the more common things you see with a BVI company are investments, trading, financial management, and property holdings. The reason why so many investment opportunities are possible in the British Virgin Islands is because of its favourable legislations. A BVI company requires just one owner, one director and one shareholder, and they can be the same person. Therefore, apart from the director, the BVI company does not have to appoint any other operating officers.

Cost Effective

One of the advantages of this type of business formation is how cost effective it is. When you decide to form a business offshore, the cost of getting that business up and running can be expensive. Some of the pricier places to form an offshore company are Switzerland, the Cayman Islands, and Bermuda. The British Virgin Islands have lower fees than these popular locations, which makes them one of the most cost effective choices.

How Asset Protection Works In BVI

Asset protection is something that every business owner thinks about when forming an offshore company, and the British Virgin Islands offer some of the best asset protection services around. Unlike some locations as a director of an International Business Company, you can protect the assets of the company by transferring the assets to another company, partnership, foundation, or trust. Another way to protect the assets of the company is to merge the company with another corporation in a certain jurisdiction, but not all jurisdictions will qualify.

If you have any questions about the advantages that a BVI Company provides business owners or if you are ready to start the formation process contact our office. Our qualified financial advisors will be able to answer all of your questions and begin drawing up the paperwork necessary to get your business up and running.

Dubai Offshore

Dubai offshore companies operate in a liberal Gulf state with a balanced economy that offers world class financial services, trading activities and manufacturing. Offshore investment is favoured simply because the country is a jurisdiction that does not levy taxes. This gives investors the most secure and confidential solutions to offshore investment. The country’s banking privacy policy has made it an ideal destination for offshore investors

Dubai, the 7th emirate of the United Arab Emirates (UAE), has established itself as the obvious location for companies seeking expansion into this part of the world. The country has a population of about 2.3 million with expatriates accounting to 82% of the population. English is the usual business language although Arabic is the official language. Through its airport, Dubai connects to more than 150 destinations globally.

Investment

There are professional services providers who can help you setup an offshore company in Dubai. They will do all the paperwork and act as your business agents in office space acquisition, drafting contracts and offering advice on taxation, banking and investments in Dubai. Most importantly is the fact that these service providers are required by law for any formation of an offshore company in Dubai and act as a link between that company and the local government.

Requirements

  • The statutory minimum number of directors and shareholders is one
  • You will have to open a corporate bank account in Dubai
  • All shares are to be fully paid for when allocated, with no differential types of share being allowed
  • Appointment of a registered agent is required from a list of approved agents
  • The registered agent facilitates the signing of the documents as investors are not required to visit the authorities when incorporating the company
  • Company audited financials are only required should there be suspicion

Benefits

  • Established offshore companies are exempt from both capital gains and profit tax, and can be wholly owned by foreigners
  • As a confidential jurisdiction, Dubai is not on any blacklist as a tax haven and does not have information exchange treaties
  • Offshore investment in Dubai allows for 100% repatriation of profits and capital, minimum capital is not a requirement and there are no restrictions on exchange rates and currency
  • There are laws addressing confidentiality and with regards to disclosure of information to third parties in respect to offshore company shareholders and founders
  • Efficient regulatory system
  • Dubai has a reputation as a leading international financial location
  • Offshore companies in Dubai can subscribe to shares in companies incorporated in Dubai, own real estate and carry on with business activities outside the UAE

Dubai offshore presents the perfect option to investors who would want a cost effective and tax efficient opportunity to trade internationally. By investing in Dubai, you will have access to a variety of investment opportunities. Dubai is strategically located between Europe and the Far East, and its proximity to the Indian subcontinent gives access to a large market.

Hong Kong Company Formation

As an international destination with abundant business and investment opportunities, Hong Kong company formation provides unmatched access to a huge customer market of over 450 million in the southern part of China. Hong Kong is a popular offshore jurisdiction because it has sound infrastructure, political and financial stability, vast commercial environment and a host of other facilities.

If you are looking to penetrate the Chinese market, then setting up an offshore company in Hong Kong will be advantageous to you. Hong Kong is considered one of the best offshore jurisdictions to form a company. The following are some of the advantages of setting up a company in Hong Kong.

The Advantages

  • Uncomplicated setting up process
  • The shares of the company can be 100% foreign-owned
  • Hong Kong is a focal point for all maritime activities in southern China. It is also one of the major ports in the world.
  • Strategically located close to Southern China thereby providing easy access to the huge market and investment opportunities in the region
  • Most dynamic economy in the world with principles of free enterprise
  • Free trade and free markets
  • Unrestricted inward and outward investment
  • Low tax rates
  • Maximum corporate income tax is only 16.5%
  • Tax exemption on income earned from abroad
  • No VAT, capital gains tax, estate tax, withholding tax on dividends and interests
  • No foreign exchange control
  • Stable banking system. Hong Kong banks are insured by the government

Types Of Companies

There are several types of companies that can be incorporated in Hong Kong. The most popular business entities in Hong Kong are partnerships, sole proprietorships and companies.

Limited Liability Company

Among all the types of companies, Limited Liability Company is the most common. An LLC offers excellent protection of your personal assets from liabilities and business risks. LLCs can be private limited companies or public limited companies. Private Limited Companies are limited by shares and are small to medium size companies. Private limited companies limited by shares have a share capital which is divided into shares of a particular value. Shareholders are entitled to the profits of the company. A Public Limited Company has more than 50 shareholders and the shares and debentures are available to the public to purchase. Public Limited Companies are listed on the stock exchange.

Sole Proprietorship

This type of company is suitable for small scale businesses with a sole owner. However, this is not recommended for business entrepreneurs. Sole proprietorship is easy to set up and the sole proprietor controls all business affairs.

Foreign Company

There are three categories for foreign company formation in Hong Kong; subsidiary company, branch office and representative office.

The Process

Hong Kong company formation is a relatively straight forward process. The main requirements for a company formation in Hong Kong are:

  • At least one director is required
  • At least one shareholder
  • One company secretary – he/she should be a resident of Hong Kong and above the age of 18
  • Confirmed company name
  • Corporate structure
  • Minimum issued capital of HKD 10,000
  • Paid up capital requirement of only 1 HKD
  • Opening a Hong Kong corporate bank account
  • Office space, virtual office is also an option

You can also contact us and speak to our financial advisor if you need more information on Hong Kong company formation and we will be glad to assist you.

Hong Kong Offshore

Investing in a Hong Kong offshore company will provide you with more business opportunities. Hong Kong is an exciting place and is ranked 3rd in the business offshore listing. Hong Kong has world-class infrastructure for aspiring entrepreneurs to help them set up their business and invest in the huge market of the region.

Hong Kong has political and economic stability, no foreign exchange controls, low tax rates, and has comparatively easy establishment of offshore corporations.

Advantages Of Setting Up Hong Kong Offshore

  • Establishing an offshore company in Hong Kong is relatively simple when compared to other jurisdictions
  • The shares of a Hong Kong offshore corporation may be 100% foreign-owned
  • It provides a gateway to the economy of China and northern Asia
  • Low tax rates. Tax rates in Hong Kong are low and simple
  • Maximum corporate income tax stands at 16.5%
  • Foreign earned income is non-taxable
  • No VAT, capital gains tax or estate tax
  • No withholding tax on dividends and interests
  • No foreign exchange control
  • Political and economic stability
  • Business friendly jurisdiction
  • Transparent judicial system
  • Stable banking system. Hong Kong banks are insured by the government

Tax Regime

One of the advantages of this offshore jurisdiction is its favourable tax regime. The country follows a territorial policy of taxation and companies are taxed only from income derived from within the country. All profits received from outside the country are not taxable and this is one of the reasons why Hong Kong is a popular offshore jurisdiction.

Income or profit received from outside Hong Kong but brought into the country is also exempt from tax. Income derived from within Hong Kong is taxable at 16.5% which is the lowest in the whole region. After exemption and deductions the tax rate will be lower than the 16.5% tax rate which is very advantageous for investors.

Incorporation

There are a couple of things you need to know in order to incorporate a Hong Kong offshore company.

  • Before the offshore company can be incorporated, the name of the proposed offshore company has to be approved by the Hong Kong Companies Registry
  • There should be at least one director for the company and the company can have an unlimited number of directors.
  • Directors can be individuals or other companies and residency in Hong Kong is not a requirement for directors
  • Nominee directors are permitted
  • A minimum of one shareholder and a maximum of 50 shareholders are required.However, shareholders do not have to be residents of Hong Kong. Shareholders may be foreigners and nominee shareholders are also permitted.
  • The secretary of the company must be a resident of Hong Kong. The secretary could either be an individual or a company.
  • If the company has only one shareholder and director, he/she cannot be the secretary of the company.
  • A local physical address is required for the incorporation of the offshore company. P.O. Boxes are not allowed.
  • Annual audit of company accounts is mandatory after incorporation
  • Annual filing of returns is necessary with the Hong Kong Companies Registry and Inland Revenue Department
  • The business registration certificate will have to be renewed before expiry

You can contact us and speak to our financial advisor regarding Hong Kong offshore incorporation and we will be glad to help you.

Singapore Offshore

Invest in a Singapore offshore company if you want to receive better return on investments. Singapore is a country that upholds banking secrecy not just as the law but part of a nation’s business culture therefore making it a premier and sought after destination to those seeking to protect and grow their investment.

Singapore is strategically located in Southeast Asia at the southern tip of the Malaysia Peninsula; it is an island state and the smallest country in Southeast Asia. Singapore serves as the Asia- Pacific hub providing easy access to bordering ASEAN nations and has several investment opportunities.

Investment

Offshore investment might appeal to individuals who want to:

  • Conduct payments while using different currencies
  • Enjoy worldwide access to their investment
  • Maintain multiple accounts
  • Enjoy favorable tax rates or tax reduction
  • Strict laws that protect and enhance confidentiality
  • Diversify their investment portfolio

Why Choose Singapore Offshore?

  • It is ranked as the third richest nation worldwide by Forbes magazine
  • Politically it’s the most stable country in Asia
  • There are no taxes on capital gains and dividends
  • No tax levied on inheritance, estate and death.
  • Singapore leads Asia in the quality of life rankings
  • Corporate tax rates in Singapore are 8.5% for up to $300,000 profits and a flat rate of 17% for any amount above $300,000
  • The World Bank puts Singapore at the top of the world rankings for ease of doing business
  • Investors might require the following documentation to successfully open an account: Identification such as a copy of your passport and evidence to support the legitimacy of the fund.

Benefits

  • Suitable for offshore investment because non-resident bank accounts are not taxed and also there is no tax levied on gains received from investing within the country.
  • The Singapore banking industry offers favorable interest rates and multiple currencies to offshore accounts
  • Offshore Investors to Singapore are spoilt for choice with the wide range of financial services firms in the country and the country’s law protect offshore account holders information
  • Holders of offshore accounts with $ 3.6 million are legible to apply for Singapore Citizenship
  • A thriving economy and a stable political environment make Singapore a preferred offshore investment destination.
  • Living standards in Singapore are similar to many countries in the west; this makes it easy for offshore account holders to physically travel and do business in Singapore.

Singapore has evolved into an offshore private banking and wealth management country. With offshore banks specifically coming up with services and products tailor-made for foreigners, going offshore is recommended for those who want better options. Offshore investors usually want to keep their investment out of reach from both the European Union and the United States of America. Factors that make Singapore offshore an attractive option are: the first-class world banking services, flexible regulatory framework and an independent judiciary.

John Lawson

John Lawson

John advises business, individuals, and organisations on pension planning. As you’ve probably realised by now, we’re invested in helping people like yourself understand a little bit more about how equity release options work.

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