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A Belize LLC with a Serbia Offshore Bank Account

The era of deoffshorization is here to stay. The future belongs to the combined strategies that help you take the best from the offshore and the onshore worlds, and we would like to present one of them in this article.

Why do we need to resort to strategies? Well, deoffshorization has brought a serious change in the financial sphere: banks with a good reputation are becoming more and more reluctant to onboard offshore structures. As a result, you can choose between trusting your money to a dubious bank or using a certain strategy. Needless to say, we recommend the second option to our clients.

Account in Serbia for LLC in Belize

What happens if you want to create the best conditions for your business by establishing a company in an offshore jurisdiction and opening a corporate account with a solid European bank? The bank will require proof of the company’s ties with the country of its registration in the form of real substance, which is hard to provide. And even if you do (and finally get your account opened), issues may arise. Some transactions may be blocked, extra documents may be requested, or the speed of transfers may decrease considerably. As a result, your counterparties express growing discontent with your cooperation, and your business activity does not bring the desired result.

However, you can organize your business in a better way. We offer our clients to set up a company in Belize, register a branch in Serbia, and finally open a corporate account with a Serbian bank. This may involve a little bit more costs than the direct way (Belize company + Serbian bank), but such investment is justified. You get a reliable business structure that will work like clockwork, and you will never have to prove that you are engaged in some kind of murky business.

Let’s look at each of the three steps you will have to take in more detail.

How to Start an Offshore Business in Belize

Belize, a reliable tax-free jurisdiction, is an excellent option for business. You may hear opinions that the offshore business is entering an era of final decline and it’s better to stay away from it, but we can say with confidence that it’s not true. We would not deny that the times aggressive tax optimization schemes or illegal movement of funds are gone. Nevertheless, Belize’s offshore companies remain excellent instruments for lawful business, and it would be unwise to miss this opportunity.

If you comply with the laws and avoid dubious schemes, offshore business in Belize has many undeniable advantages for you:

  • Exemption from taxes (on the condition that 100% of your income-generating transactions are made in other countries than Belize)
  • No need to submit reporting, file tax returns, or hold general meetings (unless you want to)
  • Limited liability of members
  • The company’s organizational structure can be formed in different ways
  • 100% foreign ownership is allowed
  • No requirements for the minimum authorized capital
  • No need to apply for TIN
  • Offshore companies in Belize are not required to prove economic substance, which saves a lot of time, money and efforts
  • High level of asset protection. The decisions of foreign courts are null and void in Belize, which makes your assets practically inaccessible: few creditors are willing to start the proceedings in Belize
  • High level of confidentiality Personal information on the beneficiaries is not disclosed, and the offshore company charter is the only document submitted to the Registry on a mandatory basis
  • The procedure of LLC re-domiciliation is officially authorized: you can freely move your company to and from Belize

We provide turnkey registration of a Belize LLC. You send the documents we request and receive the following package in return:

  • Certificate of Incorporation
  • Articles of Association, Memorandum of Association
  • Director’s consent
  • Inaugural resolution
  • Registers of Directors and Members
  • Ownership Certificate
  • Legal address in Belize
  • A set of original corporate documents
  • Courier delivery of documents

We will pay all mandatory fees and charges for you. The procedure is very quick and hassle-free unless some additional documents are required. However, this happens rarely as our experts know how to deal with the local authorities.

LLC or IBC?

It would be wrong to answer this question without knowing your particular situation and business needs. The advantages can easily turn into disadvantages in some cases, so we recommend scheduling a meeting with our expert in case of doubt. But if you want a generalized opinion, we still recommend LLC. This format maximizes the benefits associated with offshore business in Belize and seems to be almost universal – with just a few reservations.

Advantages of a Belize LLC:

  • No requirements to provide a TIN
  • You will not have to bother about substance in Belize
  • Accounting records and reports may be kept in any jurisdiction (you don’t need to stick to Belize)
  • Meetings of shareholders can be held in any jurisdiction
  • An LLC is not a risky business format under the new OECD and EU standards
  • An LLC may be founded by one member
  • There are no minimum capital requirements for LLC formation in Belize
  • Nominee service (directors, shareholders) will be available to you

Limitations of a Belize LLC:

  • An offshore LLC cannot use residents of Belize to generate profits
  • An offshore LLC cannot be the sole owner of real estate in Belize
  • An offshore LLC is not entitled to own shares and/or any other securities of Belize-based companies
  • An offshore LLC has no right to issue shares and/or any other securities in the name of a Belize resident
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Incorporation of an Offshore LLC in Belize

This is the first step in the strategy which allows you to have an account with a solid bank for your offshore company – even if it is reluctant to have offshores among its clients. The incorporation process may be completed online. 

Clients usually want to know how long it will take. Well, the term depends on the specific case, and sometimes we will need to provide some additional information. On average, all the formalities are completed within 5-7 days.

Milestones:

  • First of all, please contact our experts to schedule a meeting ([email protected]alternative communication options)
  • Discuss the scope of services, additional options, and alternatives
  • Prepare a package of documents (most clients need help at this stage, and our experts will keep in touch)
  • Pay the invoiced amount
  • Take patience and wait for up to a week for the registration package to arrive

Registration of a Foreign Company in Serbia + a Corporate Account with a Bank in Serbia

Let’s move on to the second part of our plan. Now we have a Belize company that is fully operational and you can officially start business activities. However, you need a bank account with a reliable institution that will allow your funds to move really quickly. An attempt to open a corporate account for your Belize company involves quite a high risk of failure, so we need to establish a Serbian branch for your Belizean business and associate the account with it.

Why do we offer this strategy? Our experience shows that this is a really quick, easy and low-risk path to your goal. A branch in Serbia can be registered in a matter of several days with success guaranteed in the overwhelming majority of cases – provided that your documents are in order. And it does not really matter where the parent company is based.

So, we get the documents for our Serbian branch, and it’s time to apply to the bank for a corporate account. This is an almost risk-free procedure as the country’s banks are usually willing to serve local entities. We stimulate the national economy, and the nation is happy to onboard us: thus, we keep to the basic principle of any fruitful cooperation.

Some of our clients want to know whether it is legal. And we would like to assure each of you that this is an absolutely lawful strategy. We at Offshore Pro Group never work with any creative legal acrobatics and things like that. 

The strategy we offer in this article:

  • is in line with all EU directives
  • will not lead to the company’s blacklisting
  • will not create challenges in further business operations

The only possible drawback is a slightly higher cost of doing business. However, this is the price you pay for convenient work and absence of problems, and it’s up to you to decide whether it is worth it. Business is a vehicle that can be driven on smooth or bumpy roads, and we offer the first one. Choose the road you prefer.

Are there any other alternatives? They do exist, and you can ask our experts for available offers. However, they are either less profitable in terms of costs, time and opportunities, or fall into the grey or even illegal spectrum that our experts keep away from.

Onshore and Offshore: Take Advantage of Both

The option we are discussing here is unique as it helps you take the best of the two worlds: the offshore and the onshore business. Each of them has its own distinctive features that are important for business. They are like the East and the West that rely on their own philosophy, mentality, life values, and business traditions. And you can make your own rich blend by taking the best from both!

By offering you a Belize-based offshore company with a branch and a bank account in Serbia we actually form a bridge to connect these two kingdoms. It is quite affordable and does not involve any grey manipulations, adding to its appeal. 

Take a look at the ingredients of the rich blend you are bound to appreciate:

  • There is a record about the branch of a Belize-based offshore company in the business register of Serbia. However, it does not obtain the status of an independent legal entity.
  • The parent entity (an offshore company in Belize) is not subject to any changes. There is no need to re-register the owner of real estate, bank accounts, shares, etc. All this greatly simplifies and speeds up the processing of documents.
  • The branch can easily (!) open a corporate account with the bank that will be owned and used by the parent company in Belize.
  • The company’s branch in Serbia maintains its own accounting records.
  • The tax is paid only on the part of the profit received by the branch itself.
  • The Serbian branch of an offshore company has access to a wide network of tax agreements.
  • Any payments between the branch and the parent entity in Belize are not subject to taxes.
  • If a branch in Serbia is closed, its assets will be owned by the parent company.
  • There is a simplified procedure of branch liquidation in Serbia that you can resort to in case of need.

Why Serbia

Strictly speaking, Serbia is not the only country where you can set up a branch: several countries in Eastern and Central Europe allow such options. But in our opinion, it is Serbia that offers business people a better balance of characteristics, and here are a few facts to support this idea.

Business benefits of Serbia:

  • The costs of doing business in Serbia are lower than in other European countries, while the convenience of doing business is at least on the same level.
  • Serbia offers one of the lowest corporate tax rates in Europe – as a result, many analysts call Serbia European Singapore. Strictly speaking, this statement is not quite true, but there is some element of truth in it.
  • There is no such thing as business discrimination. If you comply with the corporate laws of Serbia, conduct business honestly and avoid aggressive methods of tax optimization, your company will enjoy comfortable conditions. You are highly unlikely to encounter any negative attitude to foreign business in Serbia.
  • Friendly attitude on the part of the authorities, especially if you are investing in the Serbian economy. In many countries (France, UK, Spain), wealthy investors are often targeted by tax authorities and become the subjects of tacit political harassment. 

Registration of a Branch in Serbia

The course of action is the same as with Belize. The main thing at this stage is to carefully prepare the package of documents for our experts to study with attention and then submit to the relevant authorities.

Sample document package:

  • All corporate documents of the parent offshore company in Belize. Registration authorities in Serbia formally require certified copies, but we also recommend that you provide the originals. Our experts will discuss the list with you and help you understand the disputable issues.
  • Service Agreement (if you have a local director).
  • Agreement on the use of a registered office in Serbia.
  • Forms required by the Serbian Business Register Agency (we will provide them to you along with tips for their completion).
  • Copies of passports for all directors, shareholders and UBOs.
  • Legalized power of attorney for the branch establishment.
  • A copy of the decision to establish a branch in Serbia (we will provide a draft for you to modify).
  • A completed form signed by the Belize company’s director whereby the parent entity takes responsibility for all obligations of its Serbian branch.
  • Confirmation of the fact that the parent offshore entity in Belize has an account with a bank or financial institution in another country.
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Attention: All documents must be translated into Serbian (and we provide this service to our clients). We can issue a separate invoice for translation and other services upon the client’s request.

Bank Account

The main advantage of a bank account in Serbia is free access to the world’s leading banks and financial resources. The country’s financial sector is not inferior to the standards set by the banks of Switzerland or Luxembourg in terms of reliability and quality of services, but the fees are more affordable.

Opening a corporate bank account with a well-reputed bank has never been an easy overnight affair. You will have to strictly follow our experts’ recommendations to be approved: Serbian banks comply with all the European rules and regulations in terms of customer checks and prefer turning a client down rather than dealing with some suspicious activities. 

Here is a list of Serbian banks that can open a corporate account for the branch of a Belize-based offshore company:

  • Addiko
  • Erste Bank
  • Credit Agricole
  • UniCredit
  • Intesa
  • Raiffeisen
  • Halkbank
  • Bank of China
  • Mirabank
  • OTP Bank
  • NLB Bank
  • Sberbank

You have an ample choice, and our experts are ready to assist you in choosing a bank by analyzing your business needs and personal preferences.

Concierge Services for Your Business

We offer packages of small services that help facilitate running your business successfully and without extra hassle involved. Taking this option will be very useful at the initial stage of your business development: there are usually too many aspects to attend to, and some of them need to be delegated to respective specialists. The cost varies from package to package depending on your needs:

Basic Concierge Package (250 EUR per month, * — there are restrictions on the scope of services):

  • Legal address
  • Keeping the original documents and the archive, scanning of incoming messages, communication with the accountant*
  • Communication with tax authorities, government agencies and banks*

Medium Concierge Package (500 EUR per month, includes the following in addition to the Basic Package):

  • An appointment with a qualified English-speaking Serbian lawyer — 2 hours (you can ask for legal advice or request the services you need)
  • Various services (mail/courier services, marketing research, translators, etc.) — 2 hours

VIP Concierge Package (900 EUR per month, includes the following in addition to the Basic and Medium Packages):

  • 1-hour session with a qualified international business consultant
  • Transportation around the city for 2 days
  • Unlimited but reasonably simple assignments (mail/courier services, marketing research, translators, etc.)
  • Unlimited assistance in interaction with an accountant and government agencies

The services below are included in the basic service package and you will not need to order them additionally:

  • Registration of a Serbian branch for your Belize-based offshore company
  • Payment of all state fees and duties
  • Obtaining a TIN (Tax Identification Number)
  • Control of preparation and delivery of documents
  • Advisory support during your visit to Belgrade

Approximate estimate of additional annual costs for maintaining a Serbian branch for your Belize-based offshore company:

  • Legal address (mandatory) – from EUR 100 per month/from EUR 1200 per year
  • Accounting statements (mandatory) – from EUR 100 per month/from EUR 1200 per year (the total amount depends on the scope of work)

Office and Employees

Renting a physical office and a fee for the services of a third-party employee who will be listed as an employee of your Serbian branch requires additional costs. Strictly speaking, this step is not mandatory, but we recommend our clients to make it. This way, you will strengthen the economic presence of the branch in Serbia, which will prevent any questions that the local authorities might have. And if the substance requirements in Serbia get toughened in the future, this option will be critical.

You may decide to hire other specialists, such as a personal assistant, an SEO specialist, or a customer service manager, and this can be done at any time convenient for you. But if you know for sure that you will need the services of third-party specialists in any case, it is better to recruit them at once. You will easily find highly-qualified specialists of this type in Serbia, and the fees they charge are quite reasonable.

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The recommended sequence of steps largely coincides with that for the company registration in Belize. If you need the whole package that includes the registration of a branch in Serbia and the opening of a corporate account with a bank, please indicate this in the subject line of your email!

Conclusions

The strategy offered by our experts (incorporation of an offshore company in Belize, followed by establishment of a branch in Serbia and opening a corporate account for it with a Serbian bank) is not an obvious solution. However, it is really advantageous in terms of overall characteristics and will retain its relevance for several years to come according to our estimates.

Serbia’s growing economy and focus on attracting foreign investment make it a really attractive jurisdiction for businesses, while offshores haven’t lost their appeal, either. This powerful duo will give you all the necessary instruments for successful business all over the world.

In this article, we described a really functional strategy for your business. However, an idea means nothing until it is put into practice. If you venture on your own, we cannot guarantee that the whole process will be as smooth as we have described. That’s why we offer the help of our experts: we just know the ropes! Order the package you need and get your business structure on a turnkey basis in no time.

We provide some other services in Belize that you may find useful:

And here are the most popular of our services in Serbia:

You can always contact us by email ([email protected]) to discuss any business, investment, Golden Visa or Golden Passport issues. Good luck to you with all your business plans!

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