Whether you have acquired citizenship of Antigua and Barbuda or are just planning to invest in one of the options offered under the Economic Citizenship Program, the important point is that you must report to the territory of this small country before obtaining your passport. And in the world of interactive technology and rapidly evolving Internet space, it is important to know how things work with virtual reality in the islands.
The economic citizenship program is quite friendly to its residents-to-be. You are offered a choice of 3 options among which you can choose the most acceptable one for you. One of the options is gaining popularity right now. It is investing in real estate. And it is in demand not only with investors, but also foreign developers among whom there are representatives from the UAE, China, the United States and some European countries.
As for investors, Antigua attracts Hollywood stars with its picturesque scenery and fast-growing economy where tourism dominates. The most famous celebrities to stay in Antigua were Giorgio Armani who purchased a villa, Robert De Niro, Cameron Diaz and others.
On the basis of this all we can draw a conclusion that Internet technologies have not gone to the background, especially in terms of gambling business. Online casinos alone were making USD 6 billion a year in profits from users in the United States. Let us take a closer look at these technologies.
Antigua Internet Service Providers
When deciding about going to Antigua and Barbuda it is important to know if the Internet is up and available. It is particularly the case for businessmen who come to Antigua to invest and obtain economic citizenship.
At the beginning of the 21st century, Internet technologies began to deploy in all Caribbean islands. Antigua has not escaped it. Today, Internet service providers in this country are of the highest quality among all organizations of the Caribbean Commonwealth.
Initially, the telecommunications sector of Antigua and Barbuda was represented exclusively by state-owned companies, the largest of which is the Antigua Public Utilities Authority. Later, private telecommunications companies began to emerge in the islands, the largest of which to this day is the Antigua Computer Technology Co. Ltd. It includes Internet services, a data center, network infrastructure, a telecommunications center, repair and maintenance of any computer equipment.
The company’s standards support both 3G and 4G connections. You can use both wired and wireless access if necessary.
The Antigua Computer Technology Co. Ltd is the largest in all of the Caribbean Commonwealth islands and connects with neighboring island states via an underwater fiber optic cable. Among other things, the system is connected to the servers in Miami and is part of the Global Crossing network, allowing seamless communication with other continents.
Internet Cafes and Portable Wi-Fi Outlets in Antigua
Antigua has a network of TECH CAFE Internet cafes. Most of them are located in St. John’s, but if you want you can find similar outlets in other parts of the island. But keep in mind that all such cafes are open at best until 5pm.
Alternatively, you can get your own portable Wi-Fi outlet. Almost all Internet providers in Antigua offer such devices for rent. This pocket miracle will cost you 14-15 dollars a day, but will allow you to use the Internet in almost any part of the island. These devices support 3G and 4G connections and provide the speed of up to 22 megabits per second.
Online Shopping in Antigua
Despite its remoteness, Antigua is rapidly developing online stores. If necessary, you can order online any local or foreign goods you like and get it by courier delivery. Both local courier services and international giants like FedEx operate in the islands.
Antigua and Barbuda Online Casino
Legalization of online casinos is not uncommon for offshore countries. Antigua has a network of similar online establishments. And it can be not just interactive gambling houses, but also bookmakers. Anyone can become a client or even the founder of such an institution, regardless of nationality.
Oddly enough, in 2003, Antigua’s international gambling activities triggered a serious legal battle between Antigua and Barbuda and the United States where gambling is banned. The U.S. authorities unilaterally decided to ban all online casinos and other gambling services. The latter are an important part of this island nation’s income. Antigua sued the United States for USD 21 million to cover the damages at least partially. And although the litigation was won, the U.S. is in no hurry to pay this money.
Despite many European countries rejecting online casinos, the entire gambling business is quite legal in the islands, but it is subject to licensing. If you wish, you can open your own online casino or a bookmaker office even without being a resident of this country. To do this in Antigua you need to register your own Internet company. This procedure takes about 3 weeks. You can get a license after that. The decision to issue this paper is made by a specially authorized body within 30 days. Depending on the type of activity chosen, there are two types of licenses:
Also, a separate license must be obtained by the business founder (keyperson). All shareholders, including the company’s directors, must provide full information about themselves and confirm their business reputation. This data will be carefully protected and, in accordance with the Antigua Privacy Act, it cannot be transferred to any third party.
In addition to the above, such a company must provide local authorities with the information on its accounting principles and procedures, the equipment used, the game transactions, the prize payment system and the security service.
Before commissioning, all the equipment used must be certified by the authorized agency. The same goes for software.
The table below shows all the main costs for starting such a business.
|Information verification fee||10,000|
|Company registration fee||300|
|Annual state fee (gambling/bookmaking)||60,000/35,000|
|Key person license||1,000|
|Maintaining the company and renewing the license||4,500|
The company’s office may be located in Antigua as well as in other countries. But even if the company is physically located in another country, a nominal director must be appointed. This director will be physically present in the island (add another USD 5,000 annually).
As for the Internet provider, it is recommended to use Cable&Wireless for this purpose. The cost of connection and renting the channel depends on the planned coverage and bandwidth and can vary significantly. You will also need to open a bank account in Antigua and Barbuda. All financial transactions will go through it.
It is important to note that gambling in Antigua is not taxed.
The previously described quality of Internet connection and the variety of online services will definitely be appreciated by freelancers and other IT professionals. In this case, economic citizenship of Antigua and Barbuda will be justified not just economically but also practically. Buying a property in the islands, you can settle and work in this tropical country. This organization is one of the leaders of international investment and will assist you in understanding all the paperwork and legal intricacies. Also, in the process of negotiations and making deals you will be accompanied by a certified lawyer and psychologist. In some cases, it helps not only to simplify all organizational subtleties, but sometimes noticeably reduce the price of the venue you liked.
Do not hesitate to contact us and we will introduce you to the most experienced consultants in the field of citizenship by investment. Please email us to firstname.lastname@example.org right now.