If you’re eager to begin investing offshore, or if you already have some offshore investments but you want to expand them, it is important to redefine exactly what “offshore” is. Technically, offshore investing just refers to any investments made out of your primary country of domicile. If you live in the United States, then buying land in Belize is a form of offshore investment. If you live in Belize, then buying American bonds would be an offshore investment. Therefore, there are countless countries around the globe where you could invest offshore.
Here are some of the top factors to consider when you start picking the right jurisdiction for your offshore investing.
Languages Spoken in the Destination
Thankfully, many offshore bank personnel speak English, which makes it easy to invest around the globe. However, it may be easiest to choose a location where your native language is spoken commonly. In Latin America, that might mean Belize, where English is still an official language of the country. This makes it easy to be understood at every financial junction you come to.
Legal System Based on British Common Law
When choosing the best place to begin investing offshore, consider the legal systems of all your top contenders. A country that has a legal system based on British common law, which is what you will find in most of Europe and North America, will be easier to navigate than a system you are less familiar with.
Overall Costs and Fees
Cost is a major determining factor when choosing where to invest offshore. Some destinations with an emphasis in banking, such as Singapore, Hong Kong and Japan, offer stability but incredibly high banking fees. If you would prefer to avoid those fees, then head instead to a country with a lower overall cost of living, such as Belize.
Privacy and Anonymity in the Jurisdiction
While not all offshore investors are concerned with privacy and financial anonymity, many are. If this is a factor for you, then do some research into which jurisdictions offer financial privacy to their foreign investors. Choose a nation that doesn’t immediately give up financial information when asked by foreign governments, and stick with countries that allow you to operate privately and monitor your own financial holdings.
Taxation Rates for Foreign Investors
One of the reasons you might be investing offshore is to reduce or even eliminate your domestic taxes. If so, make sure to pick a country to invest in that will offer you affordable tax rates. In Belize, for example, the government offers foreign investors a zero percent capital gains tax, which can go a long way in helping the net worth of your investments grow over time.
National Banking Reserve Requirements
Most countries have laws specifying how much of a bank’s balance needs to be on hand at any given time. Called a reserve requirement, this ensures the stability of each individual bank. Make sure any international jurisdiction you’re considering has sufficient laws about reserve requirements so that you know your money is safe.
By considering each of these factors, you can be better prepared to pick the right international jurisdiction for your offshore investing.