Located in the Caribbean Sea, the British Virgin Islands are a British Overseas Territory; although not part of the United Kingdom, they remain under its authority. While offering anonymity and a favourable tax regime, they can however present some difficulties in engaging in commercial relations with European countries.
There are two forms of offshore company In the BVI : the British Virgin Islands Business Company (BVI IBC) and the British Virgin Islands Ordinary Resident Company, regulation of which is closer to European rules.
BVI BC is the most widespread offshore company and is equivalent to a public limited company. No minimum share capital is required for this corporate form, but there are costs for creation of the company which vary depending on the company's capital (from 350 to 1,100 USD). The director of the company must be appointed within 30 days of establishment and no nationality or residence requisite is required of shareholders and executives.
A BVI IBC cannot pursue its activity on BVI territory but can make use of special services (accountants, lawyers, etc.) in situ. In order to do business directly in the BVI it is therefore advisable to opt for the British Virgin Islands Ordinary Resident Company, which is authorised to carry out activities internally. This type of company is considered resident when most of the directors live in the BVI; it must also have a commercial licence.
|Average start-up times||2 days|
|Availability of pre-established (ready-made) companies||Yes|
|Published information about the company's directors||There is no public register of company executives|
|Accounting obligations||No obligation|
|Legislation and controls||
The BVI Financial Service Commission is the reference authority and companies are regulated under the "Business Companies Act 2004".
|Confidentiality||Bearer shares are not permitted|
|Risk indicators||Average political risk: 11%