Why Going Offshore in Nevis is popular in international business

Ever thought about an offshore company in Nevis? 

Offshore Nevis is a small but important financial centre in the Caribbean, located within the twin-island country of St Kitts and Nevis.

As a rule, companies and trusts here are created by foreign investors in order to protect their personal wealth and assets, since local corporate law presupposes the strongest protection of investor interests. The primary reason for this choice is the stable British-based legal system, which is distinguishable from the owner’s country of real residence and his tax residence.

Nevis for business - photo

If you need to create a classic offshore company in Nevis, a trust or a more complex structure such as the intriguing Nevis Multi-Form Foundation with a valid corporate bank account in Nevis or elsewhere… contact our experts!

Where to start your offshore business

Many classic jurisdictions without taxation of companies are identical in the requirements and conditions imposed on the creation of an international business company (IBC). However, the tightening of rules and requirements for the erosion of the tax base by the OECD has led to the need to revise the domestic legislation in almost every offshore haven. 

Nevis has adapted with the times and cs no longer be viewed as “classical offshore.” Rather, it is a modern jurisdiction with the optimal combination of compliance with international regulations and still a lack of bureaucracy for international companies of foreign investors.

Note an important fact that: offshore Nevis that has the strongest protection of personal data and interests of investors, and is not blacklisted by the supervisory and regulatory bodies such as the OECD, EU and other communities.

Is Nevis offshore? Yes, in the broad sense of the word. “Offshore” simply means somewhere outside your own country. However, the lists of classic offshore states are regularly updated, jurisdictions are constantly removed from the black lists, which makes it possible to freely conduct international business and enjoy zero taxation on a legal basis. Nevis, the island nation of the Caribbean is currently on the OECD White List.

Besides Tax, what are the other benefits of Nevis?

Other important privileges of the jurisdiction for those who wish to protect their own capital and savings:

  • stable political and economic system;
  • complete independence or sovereignty of the state (unlike jurisdictions such as BVI, Cayman and TCI that are ultimately controlled by the UK);
  • the existence of internal legislation on asset protection, anti-money-laundering and confidentiality;
  • government incentives to attract foreign investment from EU countries and non-EU jurisdictions;
  • other tax incentives;
  • low costs for maintaining the company and maintaining an active status;
  • cheap and fast company formation;
  • the ability to open corporate bank account either on island or worldwide (including in the UK, USA, EU etc for suitably qualified clients).

At the moment, we can confidently say that “offshore Nevis,” whether or not it’s considered a tax haven, allows you to conduct business with few restrictions on the part of financial institutions, potential counterparties and international initiative groups. The country’s legislation has been thoroughly revised, all BEPS provisions and recommendations have been taken into account, and regulatory mechanisms have been created to control the activities of offshore companies.

General information about offshore companies in Nevis: requirements and conditions

According to economists, the economic status of a jurisdiction is determined by the main activities that directly affect the stabilization of the local economy. 

Here, the lion’s share of the GDP belongs to two sectors: tourism and the offshore sector. It should also be noted that Saint Kitts and Nevis together form the strongest electronics sector in the East Caribbean region. Agricultural trade is developing in the Federation – many goods are exported to the United States for example. If we consider the development by regions, the Nevis offshore jurisdiction is stable in almost all sectors.

The classic internationally-known IBC is known in Nevis as the Nevis Business Corporation – governed by the Business Corporations Ordinance as amended in 2011 and 2016. Under modern substance regulations, such legal entities are required to keep records of financial transactions, and, if necessary, be able to prove the current financial position of the company. However, there is no requirement to file the accounts nor for audits.

Next, we will consider how the registration of an offshore company in Nevis is carried out, and what requirements must be met.

Statutory Capital of the company

Corporate legislation does not establish minimum or restrictions on the share capital. You can declare any amount from 1 USD, but the standard size is 100 thousand USD. At the same time, the company must issue shares with a par value of 1 USD in the amount of 100 thousand shares. The declared statutory capital of the corporation can be deposited at any time.

Business structure

According to the law, foreigners are allowed to form any organizational and legal type of offshore companies in Nevis, such as LLCs, but in terms of sheer numbers the most popular is the Nevis Business Corporation, colloquially known as the Nevis International Business Corporation. A less popular, but more modern structure is Nevis LLC, similar to USA-style limited liability companies. In both cases, any type of commercial activity is allowed – including regulated or licensed activities, subject to obtaining a special license.

Directors and shareholders

From 1 person, and the director and shareholder can be one and the same legal entity / individual and combine obligations. Offshore Nevis does not impose  any requirements for tax residency and nationality of founders / directors. The only exception to this rule would be residents of countries that are subject to international sanctions.

Reporting and audit

Not needed. By law, all of the “offshore” legal entities are exempted from the need to audit financial statements and or prepare annual financial statements for filing with the tax authorities.

Taxes and duties

0% corporate tax, capital gains tax, dividends, royalties, interest income. Offshore Nevis assumes only annual payment of duties to the state treasury in the amount of 220 USD.

Attention! Nevis does Double Tax Treaties with certain countries, that helps increase its standing in the international community.

Procedure for creating an offshore company in Nevis

Registration of an offshore company provides for the selection of a name, which must contain a suffix that determines its structure. For example: Limited, Ltd, Corporation, BV, AG, SA and others. Further, a corporate charter and a memorandum are drawn up, and one or more directors are appointed by the first meeting of shareholders or by the incorporators. All legal entities must have a a registered office address in Nevis and a licensed registered agent. Contact us for a quick remote registration of your offshore company in Nevis.

Foreign exchange control

Absent! Your Nevis company can move funds around the world in any currency without restrictions. This is another incentive from local authorities to attract new flows of investment capital. 

Forced Heirship

There is none. If you live in a country that limits your ability to dispose of assets as you see fit after your death, you can be sure that Nevis will only recognize its local laws on succession matters.

Requirements for financial documents in accordance with the new OECD rules

Foreign investors should remember that the directors of the company are responsible for keeping the primary accounting documents for 7 years, and also to inform his registered agent of the place of storage of such documents. In this case, the Nevis offshore company will be able to prove its financial condition and active status.

Shareholders meetings

Can be held anywhere, and are typically held remotely, by conference call or Zoom.

Other requirements for registration of an offshore company in Nevis

Forming any Nevis company within the “offshore Nevis”  jurisdiction implies compliance with applicable regulations. Every investor who wants to register an offshore company in Nevis has the right to go through a simple online company formation procedure. 

Our lawyers point out that the following legal aspects should be kept in mind here:

  • you cannot open an offshore company in Nevis on your own directly with the Registry, as the Registry only deals with licensed agents who are trained to help you;
  • the latter must be certified in accordance with applicable law and have its own office on the island;
  • IBC and LLC are prohibited from providing registered agent services themselves, as well as from owning any property in Nevis unless special permission is granted;
  • the reservation of the company name is also carried out by the agent using a special online system;
  • legal entities of foreign origin are not allowed to conduct commercial activities in the country, except opening bank accounts, without registration;
  • corporate information is not subject to public access;
  • the beneficiary has the right to use a professional director service;
  • a shareholder can be either an individual or a legal entity;

Nevis offshore companies operating in the banking and credit industry, construction, insurance, and education are subject to compulsory licensing. Investment companies and funds, as well as organizations working with loans, must obtain a license.

Offshore Nevis allows the use of the legal address of your agent as the registered office of the company – this is where corporate notifications will come. The second option is to open your own office (rent or buy).

How registering an offshore company in Nevis can help you avoid high taxes

When starting a business in order to optimize taxation and international tax planning, it is important to take into account the current residence of the beneficiary. For example, if you manage the company from a country with high tax rates, and the main income will be directed here, the company will be regarded as resident in that other country so all the benefits of Nevis taxation will be nullified. Therefore, it is especially important to properly structure a business to take full advantage of the offshore Nevis jurisdiction.

Typically, Nevis companies are created for trust and investment activities, electronic commerce or work in the financial sector. The law of the jurisdiction contains fairly strict provisions on the protection of assets of legal entities from creditors, lawsuits and government agencies. If we compare offshore Nevis with other similar states, international asset protection lawyers agree that Nevis is one of the two jurisdictions in the world with the strongest asset protection laws – the other being the Cook Islands.

With regard to taxation, the following rules apply to offshore companies in Nevis

  • 0% income tax;
  • 0% inheritance tax and capital gains;
  • 0% personal income tax (personal income tax);
  • 0% on dividends, capital distribution;
  • 220 USD annual fee.

It is quite easy to maintain the status of an active company here. The approximate cost of the annual service of a Nevis is typically around 2,000 USD, or less in some cases. If necessary, you can always order additional services from our experts, as well as full legal support for your new enterprise via reputable local law firms.

We would also like to draw your attention to the fact that every Nevis offshore company has the right to independently set the dates and frequency of shareholders’ meetings. This moment is spelled out in the company’s charter by the general agreement of the owners. It is not necessary to visit the state – all procedures are carried out remotely, using the services of courier delivery of documents.

Nevis is the ideal choice for asset protection and confidentiality according to most foreign investors and their professional advisers. Please note that the Federation does not recognize court decisions made in another jurisdiction. This proves once again that local authorities have maximized the functions of protecting foreign assets – including through international trusts.

What are the timelines for registering an offshore company in Nevis on a turnkey basis?

The whole procedure takes a maximum of 1-3 working days, some more time is spent on the delivery of documents by courier, translation and apostilization. The approximate period in this case will be 5-7 business days. We are ready to open a bank account for a legal entity in Nevis using our worldwide connections, including Caribbean banks, US banks and European payment systems.

What taxes does a Nevis company pay?

Nevis IBCs and LLCs are effectively tax-exempt in the absence of any commercial income within the jurisdiction. Companies only pay a fixed annual fee of USD 220.

Is it possible to register an offshore Nevis remotely?

Yes, our experts in Nevis have the necessary license to provide services for the registration of an offshore company on the island. You can contact us by phone +372 5 495 26 39 or indicate your contacts and we’ll get back to you quickly!

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