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British Virgin Islands

BVI is a group of islands in the caribbeans Dependent Territory of the United Kingdom, located approximately 60 miles east of Puerto Rico. The principle islands are: Tortola, Virgin Gorda, Anegada and Jost Van Dyke. Road Town, located on the biggest of the islands’ chain – Tortola, is the capital city. BVI is politically stable and possess a well-developed commercial and professional infrastructure.

Since its enactment 20 years ago, the BVI’s International Business Companies Act (Cap. 291) 1984 (the "IBC Act") has become one of the most widely-used corporate statutes with over six hundred thousand International Business Companies (IBC’s) incorporated under it - used for holding, trading and investments. Notwithstanding such phenomenal success, practitioners and users have for some time been calling for amendments to the IBC Act as well as for an additional and more flexible range of corporate vehicles, and its twentieth anniversary marked an appropriate occasion for reform.

The BVI government has strengthened and enhanced legislation to prohibit the formation of offshore banks on the Island and has in return reduced money laundering activities greatly. As a result of its highly flexible and modern legislation BVI has become extremely popular in the offshore market.

BVI Business Company

The BVI Business Companies Act, 2004, effective from 1 January 2005 for all new companies registered under it, grants all BBCs in BVI complete exemption from tax. This includes exemption from capital gains tax and all forms of withholding tax. BBCs have minimal reporting requirements, although financial records sufficient to show and explain the company’s transactions must be kept. Shares can be issued without a par value and in any currency, and no longer need to be fully paid on issue. The flexibility of this legislation enables fast and low cost incorporation.

Geographic location:
Caribbean
Population:
31,148 (July 2011 est.)
Native Language (s):
English
Currency:
US Dollar
Political Status:
British Overseas Dependent Territory. Self Governing except for external affairs, defense, internal security and Courts administration.
Legal System:
Based on English Common Law and Local Statutes.
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