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Where offshore?
Planning Offshore Operations: where to go, and, why go there?

What are the key factors that smart people and businesses usually consider very carefully when looking for a suitable offshore company location?
They will require the offshore company location to have the right characteristics in the following major areas:
no burdensome taxation
ease of company administration
adequate company confidentiality
excellent political stability
well established rule of law
excellent communications, in a reasonable time zone.


They will also usually be looking for significant assistance in the professional administration of the company (company secretarial administration - annual renewal of the company, any reporting requirements, etc.), and total long term confidentiality regarding all matters concerning their offshore company.


They may need significant additional assistance in operating their offshore company, depending on how it is used; key areas of assistance include:
accounting and audit functions
banking operations
trade services


The resolution of the first set of points above will determine which offshore country to choose. The resolution of the next 2 sets of points above will determine which corporate services company to choose. Normally the experienced offshore operator will buy his offshore company from the same company chosen to supply the required ongoing corporate services.

The most recommended places are:

Marshall Island: is lately our most frequently demanded of all offshore locations: it is the lowest cost, has the lowest compliance requirements, and is ideal for all types of offshore operations.

Liberia: is lately our most frequently demanded location for ship operations. It is the lowest cost, has the lowest compliance.

Bulgaria: is one of the european low tax jurisdictions, combining tax treaties, low tax regime and low cost.

Cyprus:
Has a number of tax trities with European countries. It is an expensive location but is often used in Eastern Europe to reduce taxes as Cyprus only tax companies a flat rate of 10% tax.

Hong Kong:
is often used by companies with major trading volume with China and the Far East. The address is not so provocative to home country tax authorities. More compliance is required here, trade financing is a routine activity with the banks here.

Singapore:
is often used by companies with a specific need for operations in South East Asia, centered on or around Singapore.

British Virgen Islands:
Before it was the most frequently used offshore location. Low cost, low compliance.

Bahamas:
is very often used for offshore banking, insurance, and trust operations.

The Cayman Islands:
is very popular as a leading offshore banking center.

The Isle of Man:
is very often used to enable lower cost trade and personal services operations with the EC.

Jersey:
is often used to enable lower cost trade and personal services operations with the EC.

Panama:
is most often used for ship operations.

Mauritius:
is often used in a way that is very similar to BVI: as the lowest cost, the lowest compliance, general-purpose offshore center.

The Cook Islands:
is often used for Pacific based operations as a low cost, low compliance, offshore location for trading and personal services operations.

The rest of this section will set out a basic description of the characteristics of major different offshore locations to enable you to understand them better. Following this, a direct consultation with Cornupia (which is free) via phone, e-mail, or a meeting to discuss your needs, should complete this process for you.


Summary: main characteristics of some major offshore locations:

Summary tables of these characteristics follow. After these tables we will give a deeper discussion of the group of major offshore jurisdictions which we at Cornupia see requested most often by our clients.

These tables are intended to give you some idea of the different requirements for disclosure and financial reporting that are imposed by the various offshore locations. These requirements can change from time to time, so you should check with Cornupia before making any final decision regarding choice of jurisdiction.

Pacific Rim & European locations table
  Marshall
Island
Hong Kong Singapore Cook
 Islands
Bulgaria Cyprus Western
 Samoa
Jersey Isle
 of Man
Stability High High High High High High High High High
Legal
System
Delaware and
New York
English Common English Common English Common Roman law English Common English
Common
English Common English Common
Beneficial
Owner
Disclosed
No No No No Yes 10% No Yes No
Tax on
offshore
profits
No No Yesif
remittedto
Singapore
No Yes No No No No
Annual
Return
No Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes No Yes Yes
Annual
Audited
Accounts
No Yes Yes No No Yes No No No


Caribbean, Atlantic Ocean and Americas locations
  Liberia B.V.I Bahamas Cayman 
Islands
Bermuda Nevis Panama
Stability satisfactory High High High High High High
Legal System state of delaware English Common English Common English
Common
English Common   Spanish Civil
BeneficialOwner
Disclosed
No No No No Yes No No
Tax on offshore
profits
No No No No No No No
Annual Return No No No No Yes No No
Annual Audited
Accounts
No No No No No if waived No No

To help you to get the additional information on each of these locations, plus some other locations, just click on the flag of the country you wish to review in the following table:




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