Top Entrepreneur Friendly Places To Live
As some of you noticed, I like to travel. As you travel you do become aware of how different countries treat entrepreneurs — some make it easier to go into business and frankly some appear to make it more difficult.
I live in the UK and while it is far from perfect it is a good place to start a business – registering a new business is pretty straight forward and easy.
That said, many of us like to dream of one day living in a much more Entrepreneur friendly country — not just for business reasons but also for lifestyle reasons (Better weather appears to be one of the top reasons) So for this post I had my VA do some research on Cool Places For Entrepreneurs To Live — I have to say, I was surprised by some of her suggestions. (For Example, the Falklands Islands is a bit too cold for me — but I’m sure the scenery is great)
Let me have you thoughts on the views and suggestions, in particular:
1) Is there a particular country you would like to move to? (if it is not listed, please suggest it)
2) What would be your reasons for moving there? Lifestyle? Friendlier Taxation rules for entrepreneurs? Better Climate?
3) Are you really happy where you currently live?
On a side note: One question I get asked over and over is for my thoughts on Business Structure? Should you set up a company or trade as an individual for example? Also do I have any views or suggestions on setting up businesses ‘offshore”?
I am quite clear on this — I do not and will not give any advice on Legal or Accounting Matters. For a start I have no professional qualification and therefore I am not qualified and secondly the rules and regulations vary so much from country to country that frankly I would be getting into a minefield if I ever attempted to do this.
Therefore – please contact a relevant Professional in your country and seek advice from them.
Finally — please note, the list below is not exhaustive – clearly you should do your own Due Diligence before moving to another country — not matter how good the weather or taxation rules are 😉
To Our Success
1. Andorra – Tax Haven
Andorra is a well-known European tax haven, and people who claim residency here have no income tax and inheritance tax. However, the country recently introduced a capital gains tax making it less popular amongst the world’s richest people. That said when compared with the price of purchasing property in other popular tax havens, Andorra is still a wise move for some.
Source: ArticlePro and independent.co.uk
2. Bahrain – Tax Haven
Bahrain has a highly favorable tax environment, with no taxes on personal or corporate income, and no withholding or VAT. Unlike some other tax havens, Bahrain allows 100% foreign ownership of companies. And as a result thousands of global corporations have made Bahrain the location of their Middle East headquarters.
Gibraltar was once a very popular tax haven for British business. As a self governing territory Gibraltar offered its “residents” and domiciled businesses no capital gain tax, no wealth tax, no sales tax and no VAT. But as of 2006 Gibraltar has agreed not to issue any more Exempt Company certificates.
4. The Bahamas
The Bahamas takes pride in offering part-time “residents” and wealthy retirees a break from taxes. This island nation has no corporate income tax, no capital gains tax, no personal income tax, no sales tax, and no inheritance tax. Businesses domiciled in the Bahamas do pay payroll taxes and a few other minor levies.
Switzerland is made up of 26 Cantons, member states that were entirely sovereign until 1648. This historical legacy of independence has created an amazing tax haven. Wealthy foreigners who gain resident status can negotiate the amount of their income that is subject to taxation with the canton where they purchase property!
6. Monaco – Tax Haven
Under Monegasque law, there is no income tax imposed in this country. There is also no withholding tax. Its rental properties are taxed at 1% plus a service charges. This tax is payable by the tenant. There are no capital gains. Monaco does not levy wealth taxes.
7. Cayman Islands – Tax Haven
The Cayman Islands are a British overseas territory, a group of three islands located in the Caribbean between Cuba and Central America. They are one of the largest offshore banking centres in the world with over 600 banks. There is no property tax, income tax, corporate tax, sales tax, capital gains tax, inheritance tax, or any other kind of direct taxation in the Caymans. They only impose tax for the following: Departure tax, which is CI$10 or US$12.50 for travelers aged 12 and above and a one-time “stamp duty” which is charged on real estate purchases at a range of between 7.5% and 9%.
8. Cook Islands
There is a moderate income tax in Cook Islands. Non-residents are taxed only on their income from sources in Cook Islands. Income and capital gains earned by non-residents is taxed at progressive rates, from 20% to 30%. Income tax is payable by those residing and working in the Cook Islands and is charged on a maximum rate payable set at 30% and a personal allowance of NZ$6,000. Any earnings over NZ$30,000 are taxed at 30%. There are no property tax, capital gains tax, estate tax and property tax.
9. Hong Kong
Rates of personal taxation in Hong Kong are amongst the lowest in the Asia Pacific. There are no sales tax, capital gains tax, no VAT, a maximum salary tax of 20% and a profit tax maximum of 16%.
10. American Anguilla(British West indies)
Anguilla is a Caribbean tax haven. It is an ideal tax-free haven for foreign and American investors. There are no personal income tax imposed and no tax information exchange agreement (TIEA) signed with IRS/US Treasury.
11. Mariana Islands
Independent but politically linked to the US, it is a tax haven. Residents’ tax rates peak at 9%. The income tax is generally charged at progressive rates. Its taxable income is computed by deducting income-generating expenses and depreciation costs from the gross income. All of the income from the islands produced by non-residents which are not effectively connected with a business is charged at a flat rate of 30%. Although if the taxpayer files an income tax return in the islands, he is entitled to 100% rebate on this tax. This country is a tax haven and a tourist heaven.
Source: CNMI Department of Finance
A tiny yet oil-rich sultanate on the northern coast of Borneo — has aspirations as an offshore financial centre. Brunei has no personal income tax. What you earn is all yours. Though, Chinese, who make up an estimated 16% of the population, are excluded from citizenship, and these benefits. They are either stateless or hold British protected persons passports. Only corporations are subject to taxation. Companies pay 30% tax on earnings. Depending on the size of the capital investment, companies with Pioneer Certificate are exempted from 30% tax for two to five years.
Tax here is moderate. Non-residents are liable to tax on all their income sourced in Malta. There is no property rate; its remittances of a capital nature are not taxable. Though, temporary residents, who extend their stay in Malta beyond six months in any one calendar year, will be subject to Malta tax on remittances of income made to the Island during the period of stay. Non-resident individuals are subject to a withholding tax of 25%. Capital Gains Tax is generally levied at a flat rate of 12% on the transfer value or the selling price.
14. Isle of Man
The Isle of Man is a low tax area with a standard rate of income tax of 18% and a higher rate of 20% depending on the level of income. There are no general capital gains tax, turnover tax or stamp duties.
15. Saint Vincent and the Grenadines
This is also one of the world’s tax havens. There is no capital gains tax. The individual income tax is contributions for the national insurance plan (social security) which is 5% of income per year. Its corporate income tax is 10% to 35%. This tax haven is considered to be low to moderate.
The tax in this country for residential properties is levied at 0.1% on land value and 0.15% on the structure/building value. The income that is earned by non-resident individuals is subject to a flat rate of 15% withheld at source. The property tax is charged on all real property in Grenada. The tax is levied on the market value of the property and a taxable rate is applied based on the classification of the property.
Mauritius, as of 01 July 2008, a flat tax rate of 15% will be applied on all taxable income. All rental income of non-residents is taxed at a flat rate of 15%, withheld by the tenant. Income-generating expenses are deductible when computing for the taxable income. The royalties paid by offshore companies to non-residents, and dividends from Mauritius by nonresident companies are tax free.
Nauru does not impose any taxes; it did not also sign any income tax treaties with any nation. To provide for a secure economic future, the government has invested much of the phosphate revenue overseas in projects ranging from a skyscraper in Melbourne to phosphate plants in the Philippines and India.
Source: Offshore Manual
19. Dutch Antilles (Netherlands Antilles)
Those that derive all their income from outside the Netherlands Antilles are liable to tax rates of between 2.4% and 6%, dependent upon activity. Local workers pay 2 % with the income of $3,300. There are no withholding taxes on dividends interest and royalties, capital taxes, exchange control restrictions and no required debt-to-equity ratio.
20. United Arab Emirates
There are no income taxes on UAE. Rental income earned on residential properties located in Dubai leased to foreign nationals is taxed at 10%. There are no capital gains and property tax in UAE.
21. Solomon Islands
For Individual taxation, depending on their income peaks at 40% that is if the income is up to $60,000 and up. $15,000 is charged at 11%. Residents are taxed on their worldwide income. Non Residents are taxed on income sourced from the Solomon Islands.
22. Antigua and Barbuda
The income tax in this country is at its progressive rates. It is categorized in three which is: employment, self-employment and other income. For Income up to $4,444, it is charged 10% and for over $53,333, it is charged 25%, this is on all income over US$53,333. Also, each taxpayer is entitled to a personal tax-free allowance of $13,333.
Aruba’s law of Imputation payment System and Dividend withholding tax is levied at 11.8%. Aruba is considered as a dormant tax haven compared to other tax haven. The tax haven companies located in Aruba are exempt from tax.
The corporate tax rate in Cyprus is the lowest in EU. The tax regime provides many exemptions. Cyprus is more than just an attractive holding company jurisdiction. There is no personal income tax if the income is at £ 0-10.000. But Chargeable Income which is greater than £ 20.000 is charged at 30%. Individuals who are not tax residents of Cyprus are taxed on income accrued or derived from sources in Cyprus. An individual is tax resident in Cyprus if he spends in Cyprus more than 183 days in any one year.
Income is taxed in progressive rates in Fiji. The taxable income is gross rent less income-generating expenses. Non-residents are entitled to the following allowances: Wife allowance of $658, provided that the wife does not elect for a separate assessment; Widow or widower allowance of $548.
Non-residents in this country are generally taxed in 15% on all their income. Same is for the gross rental income earned by the residents. The Value added Tax, leasing and sales of buildings are subject to 20% VAT. The property tax is levied on Ukrainian land and property at 1% payable by the owners or users of the property. For corporate tax it is taxed at a rate of 25%. A 1% tax is levied on the capital gains.
27. Islands of Guernsey and Jersey (Channel Islands)
The individual taxation here is normally 20%. There are no capital gains, no gifts or wealth tax, no real estate and VAT. Social security is levied at a rate of 12.5%
28. Falkland Islands
This is another moderate tax haven. The individual income tax is free for the first £12,000. The next £12,000 is charged at 20% and any amount thereafter is charged at 25%. The tricky system of individual deductions and allowances previously in place has been removed.
Income tax in Jamaica is 25%. For residential tax, a person’s company payroll system is not required to file an income tax.
The tax rates for this tax haven are not low, but fair. For the nonresidents who’s earning rental income in Montserrat is taxed at a flat rate of 10%. For the residential properties, taxes are charged at 1.65% land tax on market value of land, 0.3% house tax market value of the building infrastructure. No tax for capital gain. For Non-resident companies (lending money for “approved development) it is charged 20%. Resident companies are also charged 20%. There are no other taxes on the income of a corporation resident in Montserrat.
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