Why Set Up Your Business in Belize?
Belize, a Central American country, is not only known as a scuba diving’s paradise, but a top choice for foreign investments. Whether you are exploring opportunities to setup an international company, looking to expand abroad, or relocating your business, Belize makes the good option.
More privacy in your business operation
The privacy issue is one of the advantages that attract foreign investors. Belize holds a fair deal of respect for individual and corporate privacy as business owners and board members do not have to disclose their identity (if they do not want to do so). On top of that, business owners deserve the right not to disclose information like profits, losses, and major financial transactions – a plus point that attracts global investments.
Setting up an offshore company does not mean you need to break a bank to do so. In Belize, reduced operating costs makes offshore company incorporation an affordable investment choice. Therefore, many people find that doing business in Belize is far more affordable than other countries.
Attractive Tax Regime
The attractive tax regime is another plus point that makes Belize stands out as one of the favoured investment hotspots. Belize imposes zero capital gains tax on any income generated out of Belize or within Belize. Other than that, the residency program (or commonly known as QRP) enables eligible individuals (age 45 and above and their families) to stay in Belize without having to file their income tax returns or pay their customs duties on personal property (including vehicles). Furthermore, Belize does not levy on income generated (including pension payments) outside of Belize. For Belize’s residents, the first $14,500 of income earned within Belize is also tax-exempted. Though you are not a citizen of Belize, you have the equal rights to own, sell, and rent property in the country.
In order to create a robust business environment, Belize offers a slew of tax-free regimes that can be categorised into two: Export Processing Zones (“EPZs”) and Commercial Free Zones (“CFZs”).
a) EXPORT PROCESSING ZONES
- The EPZ has gained its traction as the catalyst that boosts production for export markets. Focus on manufactured goods and non-traditional agricultural products, EPZ is where the export-oriented activities being carried out (ranging from manufacturing, processing, assembly, and service sectors).
- Benefits of EPZs:
- i. Tax exemptions on import and export duty
- ii.Tax exemption on capital gains tax,
- iii. Tax exemption on property and land taxes, excise, sales and consumption taxes,
- iv. Tax exemption on taxes on trade turnover, on foreign exchange and transfer tax.
- v. 20-year tax holiday of 20 years where investors can opt to extend and deduct loses from profits following the tax holiday period.
- vi. Dividend tax exemption
- vii. Can open foreign currency bank accounts in Belize.
- viii. Can sell, lease or transfer items, goods and services within an EPZ.
- ix. Exemption from the Supplies Control Act and its regulations.
- x. No import restrictions imposed on raw materials.
- xi. No import or export licensing needed.
- xii. No trade licenses required.
b) COMMERCIAL FREE ZONES
- CFZ was developed to bring in foreign investment tom the country.
- Benefits of CFZs:
- i. Tax exemptions on the following:
- merchandize, articles, or other goods going into a CFZ for under the commercial purpose;
- fuel and goods (including building materials, furniture, equipment, supplies, and parts) needed for the proper functioning of the CFZ business.
- ii. Businesses in the first 10 years of operation are exempted from income tax, capital tax, gains tax or any new corporate tax.
- iii. No import or export license required.
- iv. Zero restrictions on the sale of foreign currency or transfer of foreign exchange in a CFZ.
- v. No Government charges and taxes levied on the use of foreign currency in a CFZ.
- vi. For businesses that suffer a net loss over the 10-year tax holiday, it may opt to deduct the loss against profits in the 3 years following the tax holiday period.
Long story short, Belize remains as one of the favoured investment hotspots due to the reduced operating costs, attractive tax regimes as well as its robust investment climate. If you are exploring chances to expand your business abroad, Belize is one of the not-to-be-missed options.