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Belize is a country situated in Central America. Belize is a member of Commonwealth. It has been a Great Britain colony for a long period, so its legal system is based on common law of Great Britain. Though Belize is rather active in issuing its own legal acts.
Company formation in Belize
Belize as an offshore zone
Belize is a worldwide offshore centre
There are several reasons to chose Belize for incorporation of a company of international business:
How to register a company
All the main issues are stated in the Law of International business companies (first approved in 1990, amended several times, the latest changes were made in 2017 year).
The company is registered by local agent. His main duty is a KYC procedure. He should collect and keep the information about the beneficial owner of the company. He also grants its address as the company’s official address and keeps the documents (by-laws, protocols of general meeting and so on).
The company is obliged to submit Annual return. This is a document, which contains the information about registered address, the board of directors and etc.
The companies of international business generally pay no taxes. The annual duty for prolongation of the company is 100 USD (if its share capital is less than 50 000 USD). As per Accounting Records Maintenance Act the company is obliged to keep the accounting records. The financial reports are not to be presented to tax authorities, but they have the right to demand them. Financial statements should be kept either on the registered address or whenever shareholders might decide to keep them. But the registered agent should be informed about the place where they are kept.
Amendments to the International Business Companies Act
Nowadays Belize Companies have no right to issue Bearer Shares. Also the directors are obliged to keep the Register of beneficial owners of the company. Now it is also a legal requirement to keep a Register of directors at the registered address. The agent is obliged to produce the Registers within 24 hours after official request.
Actually, these changes do not affect the companies greatly. But it might be the first step for governmental registers of beneficial owners, as they now exist on BVI. So if one owns a Belize company, it is better to monitor the changes in legislation.
Belize and Russia
Belize does not have a double tax treaty with the Russian Federation. It does not exchange tax information with Russia automatically. But BVI is likely to join the automatic exchange of tax information, as far it is going to be withdrawn from the list of non-cooperative countries. Federal Tax Service of Russia issued a draft on the new list of non-cooperative countries and territories. This document is not approved, but this is a matter of the nearest future. So if a company owned by a Russian has an account in Belizean bank (probably since 2018 or latter on), the information about it will be transferred to Federal Tax Service.