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BVI Cuts Company Fees For CapCos

by Amanda Banks, Tax-News.com, London

17 July 2007


The British Virgin Islands' financial regulator has announced a reduction in fees for companies registered under the Companies Act, to level the playing field with companies registered under new legislation.

At the same time, the BVI Financial Services Commission also announced a fee structure in anticipation of new private trust companies regulations coming into force.

Legislation passed last year increased the fees payable by companies registered under the Companies Act (Cap.185)(“CapCos”) to a minimum of $350.00. This was intended to put CapCos on a par with companies registered under the new BVI Business Companies Act (BVIBCA). An undertaking was given by the Commission to Government and the Legislative Council that there would be a territory-wide public campaign to educate members of the public about the implications of the new company regime in advance of the new changes taking effect.

However, the Government has decided that CapCos which had not re-registered under the BVIBCA when their annual fee was due (30 April 2007) should not be required to pay an increased fee in 2007. The Executive Council has therefore reduced the 2007 annual fee for local companies to the same level as it was in 2006, and directed the Registrar of Companies to refund all overpaid fees.

The annual fee payable by a CapCo for this year will, as it has always done, depend upon the value of its assets. Where the value of a CapCo’s assets is less than $10,000, the annual fee will be reduced from $350 back to $25. There is no need for companies to apply for the repayment of any overpaid fee.

The Companies Registry has commenced an exercise to identify all overpayments made, and will notify all companies that are eligible for a refund. This process is expected to take a few weeks.

The Commission also expects regulations enabling the establishment of private trust companies to come into force during the course of the month. The Order made by the Executive Council anticipates this by setting the fees that will be payable by private trust companies. The incorporation fee and annual fee for a private trust company will be:

  • Where the company is authorised to issue 50,000 shares or less, $750 instead of the normal fee of $350; and
  • Where the company is authorised to issue more than 50,000 shares, $1,450 instead of the normal fee of $1,100.

A comprehensive report in our Intelligence Report series looking at offshore and onshore corporate structures and their tax implications is available in the Lowtax Library at http://www.lowtaxlibrary.com/asp/subs_reports.asp and a description of the report can be seen at http://www.lowtaxlibrary.com/asp/description_report7.asp

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