British Virgin Islands

About the Country

The British Virgin Islands (BVI), are a British overseas territory located in the Caribbean to the east of Puerto Rico and consist of the main islands of Tortola, Virgin Gorda, Anegada, and Jost Van Dyke, along with over 50 other smaller islands and cays. The below content will explain you in detail about the requirements for the company formation in BVI, know more about the process of trademark registration in BVI and understand the BVI Legal compliance requirements.

British Virgin Islands

Doing Business Introduction

The Country is having prosperous economy with an opaque banking system. The Economy is dependent on tourism and financial services. It is heavily dependent on migrant workers, and over 50% of all workers on the islands are of a foreign descent.

YourGlobalPro professionals can assist its client with any type of company formation in BVI, trademark registration in BVI and other recurring services for your business in BVI.

Incorporation - Types of Business Entities

Before starting the business, the first decisions to make is to determine what form of business entity to establish. There are several types of entities that can be incorporated in BVI are as mentioned below:

  • Companies limited by shares;
  • Companies limited by guarantee;
  • Companies limited by guarantee authorised to issue shares;
  • Unlimited companies with or without shares;
  • Restricted purposes companies (or SPVs); and
  • Segregated portfolio companies (or SPCs).

Time Frame for Incorporation of Company in BVI varies from depending on the type of entity selected and each business type has its own advantages and disadvantages. YourGlobalPro professionals estimate the time required for the process of Company formation in BVI to be completed is 4-6 working days.

Benefits of Registration of a Company

Below are the advantages of company formation in BVI:

  • No longer requires a company to have a share capital.
  • BVI company may acquire the shares of a member
  • BVI company may give assistance to a third party to acquire its shares
  • BVI company may migrate to or from another jurisdiction that permits corporate migration
  • No additional layer of tax and regulation
  • Can list their shares on stock exchanges worldwide
  • Administrative simplicity and the ability to ring-fence liabilities

Tax Registration and Filing

Under the BVI BC Act, companies incorporated under the British Virgin Islands (BVI) Companies Act are exempt from all taxes provided under the BVI Income Tax Ordinance. Below are some crucial points in relation to taxation rates in BVI:

Corporate Income Tax Rate 0%
Branch Profits Tax Rate 0%
Capital Gains Tax 0%
Value Added Tax 0%
Self-Employed Person Exempt from tax

Double Tax Treaty

Double Tax Agreements (DTA) regulates the tax treatment of income or capital gains in situations where the same taxpayer is taxed twice in two countries for the same subject.

The United Kingdom’s double tax treaties with Japan and Switzerland have been extended to the BVI, these treaties are not used in practice. Also, BVI has not entered into any other tax treaties.

Trademark registration

For trademark registration in BVI, an application needs to be made to the BVI Registry of Corporate Affairs (BVIFSC). It takes approximately 8-10 months’ timeframe to complete the process of trademark registration in BVI. The Trademark Registration in BVI is valid 10 years from the date of filing trademark and is renewable for similar period by paying the renewal fee by the expiration date for an unlimited number of times. It can also be renewed during the grace period of six (6) months after expiration, upon payment of a late renewal fee.

YourGlobalPro professionals are fully equipped to assist you with the process of trademark registration in BVI for your business. For assistance or advise in the matter of the trademark registration or intellectual property – please feel free to write or contact us.

Secretarial Compliance

Below are some of the important points in relation to Company Secretarial Compliance in BVI:

  • To conduct business in the BVI, all persons and companies must obtain a trade license, under the Business, Professions and Trade Licenses Act 1989 by making application to the Trade and Investment Promotion Department (the Department).
  • Register of Director and Members to be maintained
  • Minutes and resolution to be maintained by the Company
  • No need to hold annual general meetings
  • Must have a registered agent and registered office in the BVI

Accounting Services

YourGlobalPro professionals can assist you with the entire bookkeeping and accounting services for your BVI Business Set up as per your business needs including implementation of financial accounting software, accounting records preparation and time to time preparation of budgets, forecasts.

Auditing service

In BVI, there is no obligation to audit the accounts or file annual tax returns.

Based on the size of the business – the companies are required to prepare and file financial statements with the Authority. YourGlobalPro professionals provide you auditing services as required by your business.

Banking

The documentation requirement differs from Bank to Bank and need to be complied for the Bank account opening.  The major banks in BVI are Banco Popular de Puerto Rico, FirstBank Puerto Rico, FirstCaribbean International Bank (Cayman) Limited, National Bank of the Virgin Islands Limited, Scotiabank (British Virgin Islands) Limited, VP Bank (BVI) Limited. All banks are stable, reliable and offer the same level of services.

YourGlobalPro professionals facilitate all the paper work in relation to banking need and can assist you in opening bank account for your business plan in BVI.

Legal and Compliance

In BVI, the responsibility of legal compliance is not a one-time affair, but a continuous process. Below is the various BVI legal and compliance requirement to be followed by incorporated entities:

  • Each company must have memorandum and articles.
  • Must have a registered address in the BVI.
  • Must have at least one shareholder and one director who may be the same person & Non-residents may act as directors.
  • Shareholders/directors may be individuals or company
  • There is no exchange control or restriction on the movement of US dollar funds into or out of the BVI or on their conversion to other currencies.

YourGlobalPro professionals can assist you in BVI Legal and compliance requirements.

HR and Employment Law and Immigration / VISA

In BVI, the applicable BVI labor code would apply to the entrepreneurs wishing to hire workers. Below are some of the important points in relation to HR & employment law in BVI:

  • A work permit must be obtained for any expatriate who wishes to engage in employment in the BVI, whether it is paid or unpaid, full-time or part-time.
  • Employers must advertise any position in a local newspaper in the BVI for two consecutive weeks
  • The Employers must give preference to any Belonger or Virgin Islander who has applied and is qualified for the position
  • Employees on work permits are generally prohibited from working for other employers
  • The Application for a new work permit in the BVI must be filed with the Labour Department by the prospective employer on behalf of the expatriate seeking employment
  • Once a work permit is granted, the Labour Commissioner prepares a work permit clearance letter which is then submitted to the Immigration Department for immigration stamp in passport.
  • Work permits are issued for one-year periods and application for renewal must be submitted four to six weeks prior to expiration of the current work permit.
  • Every employer need to provide written statement setting forth such employee’s working conditions
  • Maximum probation period cannot exceed four months
  • Minimum basic wage payable for employment in the BVI is USD4.00 per hour.
  • Employers must grant employees with less than ten years of service at least one vacation day per month and a minimum of at least 12 sick days per year.

Country Statistics

Capital Road Town
Largest City Road Town
Area Total 153 Sq. Km.
Population 28,054
Density 260 / Sq. Km.
Currency United States Dollar (USD)
Government Parliamentary Dependency Under Constitutional Monarchy
Official Language English
Religion Christian: 90% Hindus and Muslims: 1.2%
Government Offices Hours Mon-Fri 8:00am -4:30pm.
Business Offices Hours Mon-Fri 8:00 am -4:30 pm
Banks and Exchange Houses Hours Monday to Thursday 8:30 am to 4:00 pm Friday 8:30 am to 5:00 pm Saturday 9:00 am to 3:00 pm

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