British Virgin Islands – classic offshore jurisdiction
British Virgin Islands (BVI) is one of the most popular offshore jurisdictions in the world. The simplicity and availability of offshore financial services & companies for international business activity are main features of the jurisdiction.
Advantages of BVI as your Jurisdiction of choice:
- Simple company registration and maintenance procedures;
- No pre-paid capital requirement;
- A minimum mandated number of shareholders and directors is one. Corporate persons can fulfil those roles. No residency requirement;
- Profits received from the sources outside BVI are tax free in the British Virgin Islands;
- Official currency — US dollar;
- The British Virgin Islands jurisdiction is whitelisted by the OECD.
Fee Schedule for Company Formation in BVI
|Apostilled company documents||●||●||●||●|
What documents will you receive upon incorporation?
- Certificate of Incorporation;
- Memorandum & Articles of Association;
- Subscriber’s Resolution;
- First resolution of Directors;
- Relevant Share Certificate(s).
If nominee Services are ordered alongside company formation you will also receive the following:
- Apostilled Power of Attorney;
- Trust deed;
- Nominee Directors Declaration.
What do you need to form a company in BVI?
Give us a call, or drop us an email and we would be glad to elaborate all the requirements for you.
Taxation and Statutory Requirements at a glance
Business Companies that do not conduct commercial activity inside British Virgin Islands are tax free in the jurisdiction.
British Virgin Islands Business Company (BVI BC formerly known as BVI IBC) needs to provide information about where the financial documents are kept. There is no requirement to file financial accounts in the BVI.
A BVI BC is not taxable on income and is exempt from withholding tax on dividends, royalties, interest. It is also free from capital gains tax accrued from selling company shares and other securities. No tax is paid on inheritance and gifts with respect to company shares and other securities. No stamp duty is paid except on land property transactions.
Note: BVI BCs’ replaced international business companies in the jurisdiction (BVI IBC) on 1 January 2005.
Business companies cannot own property in the BVI, except for instance of renting an office. Bank, insurance and trust activity is licensed.
The BVI offshore companies laws were passed in 1984. In 2006 the number of registered companies was over 750 thousand, and in the year 2012 there were over a million formed companies.
A BVI Business Company has the legal rights of a natural person.
High confidentiality rules are applied to the information concerning beneficiaries, directors, shareholders, company register and documentation.
BVI BCs must maintain regulatory restrictions on business activities and company name.
Company meetings may take place anywhere in the world and also can be done via electronic channels. Shareholders may vote by proxies.
Bearer shares are permitted but must be kept with a licensed custodian in BVI.
A BVI BC has the option not to state its operational objects.
The company records may be kept anywhere in the world.
There are no filing requirements concerning financial records of the BVI BC.
Re-domiciliation is allowed both in and out of BVI.
BVI shelf companies are available.
BVI Company features overview
|Income tax in BVI||None|
|Conduct business internationally||Yes|
|Conduct business within BVI||Yes (there are additional requirements)|
|Formally considered as resident in BVI||Yes|
|Operational objects||No requirement to specify|
|Authorized capital||Not required as a concept|
|Minimum paid-up capital||No requirements|
|Capital can be expressed||In any currency|
|Most effective number of shares (maximum amount at minimum state fee)||50,000 shares (with or without par value)|
|Bearer shares||Yes (but to be held by a custodian only)|
|Registered Agent in BVI||Required|
|Registered Address in BVI||Required|
|Minimum number of directors||One|
|Register of Directors||To be kept by the Registered Agent|
|Register of Directors filed with the Registry of Corporate Affairs||Yes|
|Minimum number of Members (Shareholders)||One|
|Register of Members||To be kept by the Registered Agent|
|Register of Members filed for public record||No|
|Holding of Annual General Meeting||Not required|
|Meetings of Directors/Members can be held||Anywhere in the world, also by proxy|
|Corporate Minutes and Resolutions||To be kept by the Registered Agent|
|Disclosure of beneficial owners to Registrar||No|
|Disclosure of beneficial owners to Agent||Yes|
|Keeping of accounts||Yes|
|Accounts audit||Not required|
|Available special types of Company||Restricted purpose company
Segregated portfolio company
|Re-domicile a foreign Company into BVI||Yes|
|Re-domicile a BVI Company abroad||Yes|