An offshore company is usually referred to as a company incorporated for the purpose of doing business outside of its country of registration. This means that such a company can be registered and operated outside the national borders of a person or company. This can be particularly worthwhile when it comes to legal, financial or tax advantages. A company can also legally move abroad to benefit from relaxed regulations, or in other words, to benefit from international laws. This is also the main reason why business people decide to set up a company abroad.
Some of the countries are deliberately making their local business attractive to leverage foreign capital and investment. The well organized and well known worldwide offshore destinations are UK, USA, Belize, Cyprus, Hong Kong, Dominica, Singapore, Seychelles, Panama and St Kitts & Nevis to name a few. Buying a business remotely these days is advantageous and easy to do.
Advantages of offshore companies There are certain advantages of running an offshore company. For example property protection when a person has a lot of money and can use such an opportunity to protect them from lawsuits and divorce settlements. Another benefit is low taxes. Some jurisdictions are called tax havens due to the level of taxation that depends on the jurisdiction: tax exemptions, flat taxes, 0% capital gains tax, etc. The other advantage is related to international expansion when a company encounters many legal and bureaucratic issues in its homeland. Other benefits include: lower costs of doing business, tax deferral, compounding of deferred tax profits, easy annual reporting, multiple revenue streams, VAT savings on services, and anonymity.
Normally, the benefits to be derived from an offshore company depend on the jurisdiction of the offshore company and to some extent also on the laws of the country of residence of the owner of the company. Because of this, business people need to be mindful of the offshore jurisdiction they choose and take into account the local laws of that country.
Incorporation procedures for offshore companies There are only a few basic steps that need to be taken to incorporate a company in Hong Kong, Belize, Seychelles or St Kitts & Nevis. First, the cost of the basic services needed to start a business must be covered, which includes a certificate of incorporation, a resolution to rent an office and a directory of directors (approximately €700). Second, there is an additional fee for privacy; depending on the chosen law firm (approx. 400 €). There is also a fee for opening a bank account with personal presence, which is required to open it for the sake of the businessman's security, a fee for obtaining a logo, rubber stamp, seal, name tag, as well as fees for apostille, virtual offices, etc. A person must provide their personal credit card details and contact information. There is also a mandate to be signed, which specifies who has the right to control the opened bank account, add and remove signers and close it. It depends on the articles of association of the company.
Frequently, the above services may also optionally include the formation of international trading companies, the provision of a registered agent, the provision of company management, document preservation and company administration services, governance, equity participation, the formation of offshore funds, as well as assistance with the licensing of Offshore insurance includes companies and offshore banks, offshore bank account setup, virtual office services and corporate searches. These services can be offered and provided by professionals such as high net worth individuals, private entrepreneurs, professional advisors, accountants and legal advisers working in local businesses of local jurisdictions in Hong Kong, Belize, Seychelles or St Kitts and Nevis etc.
The total population of Wallis and Futuna is 11,683 people. The people of Wallis and Futuna speak the French language. The average age is around 30.3 years. Life expectancy in Wallis and Futuna is 78.98. The female fertility rate in Wallis and Futuna is 1.77. Details of the language, religion, age, gender distribution, and advancement of the people of Wallis and Futuna can be found in the sections below, as well as the section on education in the country.
Population In Wallis and Futuna, the population density is 48 people per square kilometer (125 per sq mi). Based on these statistics, this country is considered sparsely populated. The total population of Wallis and Futuna is 11,683 people. Wallis and Futuna has approximately 2,849 foreign immigrants. Immigrants in Wallis and Futuna account for 0.1 percent of the total number of immigrants worldwide. Immigrants in Wallis and Futuna account for 20.5 percent of the total number of immigrants worldwide. Read below for Wallis and Futuna's stats on median age and gender distribution at different ages.
Age The average age is around 30.3 years. The average age of men is 29.3 years and the average age of women is 31.5 years.
Gender The sex ratio, or number of males per female (estimated at birth), is 1.05. It can be further broken down into the following categories: sex ratio under 15 - 1.11; sex ratio from 15 to 64 - 1; sex ratio over 64 - 0.83; Overall sex ratio - 1.01. The overall sex ratio differs from the sex ratio estimated at birth. This is because some newborns are included in the sex ratio estimated at birth, but die within the first few weeks of life and are not included in the overall sex ratio.
Religion The majority religion of Wallis and Futuna is Christianity, the followers of which comprise 97.4% of all religious believers in the country. Christianity is an Abrahamic monotheistic religion based on the life and teachings of Jesus Christ as presented in the New Testament. Christianity is the world's largest religion, with over 2.4 billion adherents, known as Christians. Christians believe that Jesus is the Son of God and the savior of humanity whose coming as Christ or the Messiah was prophesied in the Old Testament. Besides Christianity, there are some followers of folk religions in Wallis and Futuna.
General development Wallis and Futuna is considered to be a developing nation. The developmental stage of a nation is determined by a number of factors including, but not limited to, economic prosperity, life expectancy, income equality, and quality of life. As a developing nation, Wallis and Futuna may not be able to offer consistent social services to its citizens. These social services may include things like public education, reliable healthcare, and law enforcement. Citizens of developing nations may have lower life expectancies than citizens of developed nations. The migration rate in Wallis and Futuna is -5.06%.
Know Your Client, also known as KYC, refers to numerous due diligence activities carried out not only by financial institutions but also by other regulated companies in order to obtain all relevant information about their clients before and during doing business with them. Each finance and business unit is responsible for adopting and implementing various KYC procedures and regulations.
Know Your Client's policies typically include procedures such as: Collecting and analyzing a person's identity information and investigating the true beneficiary of the company and business accounts Name comparison with lists of political parties (search for politically exposed persons or PEPs) Determine a customer's likelihood of committing money laundering, terrorist financing, identity theft, or other criminal offenses Creation of expectation profiles based on the transaction behavior of a customer and monitoring of deviations from this profile The fight against money laundering, also known as AML, is a set of laws, regulations, and other practices designed to prevent the practice of generating income from illegal activities. Typically, money launderers hide the true source of their income through a series of steps that make it appear that money has been legitimately made from illegal activities. The Anti-Money Laundering Guidelines are designed to help institutions identify and investigate potential cases.
Globalization and the global information exchange system KYC and AML guidelines are designed to provide solutions to eliminate the numerous risks that arise from the fact that financial institutions do not know their customers. On the other hand, these guidelines also tend to contradict the general expectations of an individual regarding confidentiality and privacy.
With the rapid advance of globalization over the past few decades, safety concerns have become a top priority not only for national regulators, but also for the international community in general. In response to growing concerns about money laundering, an intergovernmental organization called the Financial Action Task Force on Money Laundering (FATF) was established during the G7 summit in Paris in 1989, which shortly thereafter issued recommendations on money laundering and terrorist financing. All recommendations are to be implemented at national level through laws and other legally binding measures. In addition to the Know Your Client and anti-money laundering procedures described above, the FATF Recommendations require states to cooperate internationally and share relevant information in investigations.
A new international standard called AEI or Automatic Exchange of Information will come into force in participating countries to ensure that tax authorities exchange information about taxpayers' bank accounts. The main aim of the AEI is to make tax evasion impossible. The AEOI stipulates that banks must report information about bank and custody accounts to the domestic tax authorities. This information is then exchanged with the tax authorities of the AEI partner countries.
Possible solutions to protect confidentiality Some jurisdictions consider divulging an account holder's name to be a criminal act. The privacy of the customers of a bank is protected by law and, by its very nature, is equated with the confidentiality obligation between doctor and patient or lawyer and customer. Although privacy is seen as a fundamental principle and highly protected in these jurisdictions, law enforcement authorities may be given access to relevant information as part of a criminal investigation.
Unless criminal charges have been made, however, offshore banks offer the highest level of confidentiality and security. Offshore banking jurisdictions are designed to protect assets from domestic litigation and other civil matters such as disputed estates or divorce. An even higher level of confidentiality and anonymity is achieved through other asset holding vehicles - for example international business companies and offshore trusts.
Another way to increase your privacy is to use a nominee so that your name does not appear in the company register as the owner of your company (nominee services). However, any bank that requires disclosure of the company's beneficiaries would still see your name on the list.
Considered one of the most open and cosmopolitan economies in the world, Hong Kong is probably the best place to do business. First, it has a great location in the geographic center of Asia, offering quick and easy access to the region's major markets. Located on China's south-east coast, Hong Kong is the world's largest single market, not least because its economy is built on free trade, free enterprise and the free market open to all: there are no restrictions on domestic or foreign investment and no barriers to trade such as Quotas, tariffs or exceptions. In addition, there are no nationality restrictions on sectoral or corporate ownership, no exchange controls and a simple tax regime in this jurisdiction. Hong Kong also has the lowest corporate tax rate (currently 16.5%) of any major Asian economy.
Taxation and the tax system in Hong Kong Hong Kong is often referred to as a tax haven as tax rates are very low - dividends, offshore income and capital gains are not taxed at all. When levying taxes, Hong Kong applies the principle of territorial source. This means that income is generally only taxed if it comes from business or dealings within Hong Kong. However, there are a small number of sources of income from companies that are not subject to the territorial source principle, and such income is taxed at source (e.g. royalties received by non-residents for the use of literary property or copyrighted material).
Hong Kong has a scheduler income tax system, which means different types of income are taxed separately. For corporations, the relevant taxes are: profit tax (tax on business, professional services or trade income in Hong Kong), payroll tax (tax on employment, office or pension income) and property tax (tax on income earned from Hong Kong real estate).
As for corporate income tax, the tax rate is 15% for unincorporated companies and 16.5% for corporations (the lowest in the region, compared to 17% in Singapore and 25% in mainland China). Capital gains are not taxable. Dividends from local companies are taxable, but dividends from foreign companies are not, as they are offshore in nature. Tax residency is not relevant for the calculation of income tax, only for double taxation treaties or arrangements.
Payroll tax is levied at a progressive rate on a scale between 2% and 17% or at the standard rate of 15%. Payroll tax includes salaries and wages, bonuses, commissions, pensions, holiday pay, fees, gratuities, etc. There is a sixty-day income exemption, making anyone visiting Hong Kong less than sixty days per calendar year exempt from payroll tax. Depending on the employment relationships, however, a tax return is required in some cases. Property tax is currently 15% in Hong Kong and is payable by the owner of the building or land.
Advantages of choosing Hong Kong Incorporating a company in Hong Kong offers many benefits. First of all, company registration is easy and cheap. Your biggest expense will be the flight to open your bank account, although in some cases this can be done remotely. Hong Kong has an excellent, world-renowned banking system and excellent communications infrastructure. There are no minimum share capital requirements and only one shareholder and director is required to incorporate a limited liability company. In addition, Hong Kong resident companies have no restrictions on foreign directors or shareholders. The main business language is English - one of the official languages in Hong Kong. All notices, information and documents can be prepared in English.
As you can see, Hong Kong is a great place for your business for many reasons. It is an international economic center with a reliable and stable legal system, an open-minded spirit, and strong and well-established institutions. With its pro-business government, Hong Kong has been voted the world's most liberal economy for 20 years in a row. It is probably an ideal choice whether you are starting or continuing your business adventure.