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Belize, located in Central America, is a stable and growing economy that offers a wealth of opportunities for discerning entrepreneurs seeking to expand their business horizons.


from 125 €

Company Incorporation in Belize (Offshore)

Being a part of the Caribbean Community (CARICOM), Belize is strategically positioned as a gateway for trade and investment in the region. Its English-speaking populace, progressive government policies, and an open economy make it an attractive destination for international businesses. Additionally, Belize’s commitment to fostering a sustainable environment aligns with the global move towards eco-conscious businesses. It is a nation that emphasizes transparency, integrity, and sound fiscal practices, catering to both budding entrepreneurs and established corporations alike.

Country Belize
Language English (62.9%)
Spanish (56.6%)
Creole (44.6%)
Maya (10.6%)
German (3.2%)
Time in Belize GMT-6
Population Approximately 420,000 (Source: World Bank)
Currency Belize Dollar (BZ$) (BZD)
Religion Christianity (majority)
Tax regime 25% for individuals; 0% for IBCs operating outside Belize
VAT General Sales Tax (GST) is 12.5%
Overage salary Approximately $10,000 to $12,000 per annum (Source: tradingeconomics.com, 2020)
Types of incorporations International Business Company (IBC)
Limited Duration Company (LDC)
Limited Liability Partnership (LLP)
Public Investment Company (PIC)
Non-Governmental Organization (NGO)
Belizean Trust

Why opening a company in Belize?

Belize’s strategic position in Central America and membership in CARICOM, combined with a business-friendly environment, makes it an excellent choice for company formation. Especially for entrepreneurs looking to leverage the benefits of offshore operations without the tag of being in a “tax haven,” Belize provides a middle ground with its fair tax structures and progressive business policies. Its regime is particularly beneficial for international businesses and investors aiming for a blend of growth and sustainability.


Starting a business in Belize comes with myriad advantages. Let’s delve into the specifics of these benefits.

Advantages Details
Strategic Location Situated in Central America, serving as a bridge for trade and investment opportunities in the region.
English-speaking Nation Conducive for international business with no language barrier.
Supportive Government Policies Progressive and open economic policies favoring business growth.
Favorable Tax Regime Competitive tax structures, particularly beneficial for international businesses.
Robust Legal Framework Based on English Common Law, ensuring transparency and justice.
Eco-conscious Environment Opportunities for businesses focusing on sustainability and eco-friendly initiatives.


While Belize offers many benefits, there are certain challenges businesses might face:

Disadvantages Details
Smaller Market Size Limited local market compared to larger economies.
Infrastructure Developing infrastructure can sometimes pose challenges for businesses needing advanced facilities.
Perceived Image Being a favored offshore business location can sometimes lead to negative perceptions.
Distance from Major Markets For businesses targeting markets like Europe or Asia, logistical considerations can be a challenge.

Most popular sectors to set up a company in Belize

Tourism, agriculture, and offshore financial services are the dominant sectors in Belize. With its pristine beaches, historical sites, and natural beauty, tourism is a thriving industry. Agriculture, with a focus on products like sugar and citrus, remains a significant contributor. Offshore financial services, including banking and insurance, have seen a consistent rise, thanks to Belize’s progressive policies and robust legal framework.

Fiscal system in Belize

Belize’s fiscal system is characterized by its commitment to sustainable growth, transparency, and fostering a business-friendly environment. This is evident through its competitive tax structures and well-established legal framework based on English Common Law.


The Belizean tax system, while comprehensive, aims to promote both domestic and international businesses. Individual income tax stands at a standard rate of 25%, considered fair given the country’s plethora of business benefits. Corporate tax rates can vary depending on the nature of the business, but in general, they are competitive and geared towards encouraging investment and growth. Belize has also signed several double taxation treaties with countries worldwide, ensuring that businesses operating in Belize are not doubly taxed on the same income. Additionally, there are numerous tax incentives available, particularly for businesses in sectors that Belize is keen on promoting – such as tourism, agriculture, and offshore financial services.

VAT in Belize

In Belize, the equivalent of VAT is the General Sales Tax (GST), levied at a rate of 12.5%. GST applies to goods and services, with specific exemptions in place for certain essential items. Regular updates and refinements are made to the GST regime to ensure it remains contemporary and relevant.

CFC Rules

As of the last update, Belize does not have stringent Controlled Foreign Company (CFC) rules. However, it is always advisable for businesses to remain updated with the latest regulations.


Local director

For most company types in Belize, there isn’t a strict requirement to have a local director. However, having one can sometimes facilitate certain business processes and regulatory compliances.

Local secretary

Similarly, there is no mandated rule to have a local secretary for Belizean companies, but it’s a common practice in the corporate structure.

Annual return

Companies in Belize are required to file an annual return. This is a standard procedure to ensure businesses are compliant with local regulations and to keep the corporate registry updated.

Audited accounts

Depending on the type and scale of the business, companies might be required to have their accounts audited. This is especially true for larger corporations or those in regulated sectors like finance.

Company types in Belize

International Business Company (IBC)

Type Designations Minimum Share Capital Taxes
International Business Company IBC
None Exempt

An International Business Company (IBC) in Belize is established by individuals or corporations seeking confidentiality, asset protection, and tax relief. They are designed for international trade and investment activities, and not permitted to conduct business with Belize residents or own real estate in the country.

Entrepreneurs, corporations, and investors engaged in international business activities find Belize IBCs suitable due to their flexibility and tax efficiency. This structure is appealing for optimizing taxes, protecting assets, wealth management, and maintaining corporate confidentiality.

IBCs in Belize are exempt from local taxes, including income, capital gains, and dividend taxes. They have minimal reporting requirements, high privacy levels, and asset protection features. Additionally, there’s no minimum share capital requirement, making them accessible for businesses of all sizes.

Limited Duration Company (LDC)

Type Designations Minimum Share Capital Taxes
Limited Duration Company LDC
None Exempt

A Limited Duration Company (LDC) in Belize is a unique entity that combines features of a corporation and a partnership, established for a predetermined period. It’s commonly used for joint ventures, specific projects, or estate planning.

LDCs are ideal for investors, partners, or groups seeking a corporate entity for a limited duration, such as for a joint venture or a specific project. They are also suitable for estate planning, appealing to family businesses or investors requiring a corporate structure with a natural expiration date.

LDCs provide management flexibility similar to partnerships with the liability protection of a corporation. They are exempt from local taxes, making them attractive for international business. The predetermined duration offers a clear exit strategy for investors, beneficial for estate planning or when formed for a specific purpose.

Limited Liability Partnership (LLP)

Type Designations Minimum Share Capital Taxes
Limited Liability Partnership LLP
None Subject to local taxes (for domestic operations)

A Limited Liability Partnership (LLP) in Belize is an innovative business structure that merges the flexibility of a partnership with the liability protection typically offered to shareholders of a corporation. Each partner in an LLP is not personally liable for the debts of the LLP or the negligence of other partners, but is liable for their own actions.

Professionals such as attorneys, accountants, and consultants often find LLPs appealing, especially those interested in a collective business structure but want to limit their personal liability regarding business obligations. It allows them to operate collaboratively while shielding personal assets from the potential risks associated with the business.

One of the main advantages of an LLP in Belize is its tax transparency. While the partnership itself is not taxed, income is passed through to partners who report it on their personal tax returns. This avoids the double taxation often seen in corporations. Additionally, the liability protection for partners is a significant benefit, as it offers peace of mind and security for personal assets.

Public Investment Company (PIC)

Type Designations Minimum Share Capital Taxes
Public Investment Company PIC
Subject to regulations Exempt (specific conditions apply)

A Public Investment Company (PIC) in Belize operates under the Mutual Funds Act and is designed for pooling collective investments. It’s commonly used by mutual funds or entities where multiple investors contribute funds that are then invested in various assets.

Investors looking to diversify their portfolios, investment companies, and fund managers are the primary groups interested in establishing PICs. They offer a structure that allows for collective investment, providing opportunities for diversification, professional fund management, and the potential for growth and income.

The main advantages of a PIC include the potential for increased capital through collective investments and a structure that accommodates numerous investors. These companies are generally exempt from taxation in Belize, providing significant fiscal benefits. However, they must comply with certain regulatory requirements, including routine reporting and disclosures, which ensure transparency and protection for investors. This regulated environment helps maintain investor confidence and can contribute to the overall appeal of the PIC structure for investment purposes.

Non-Governmental Organization (NGO)

Type Designations Minimum Share Capital Taxes
Non-Governmental Organization NGO N/A Exempt (specific conditions apply)

A Non-Governmental Organization (NGO) in Belize is a non-profit entity established for purposes such as social welfare, environmental protection, human rights, and others. Unlike traditional businesses, NGOs primarily work towards the betterment of society or the advancement of certain causes, relying on funding from donations, grants, and membership fees.

Individuals or groups passionate about social causes or community service often establish NGOs. These organizations are pivotal in addressing issues that are sometimes overlooked by the government and the private sector. They mobilize resources and raise awareness, relying on volunteer work and the spirit of philanthropy.

NGOs in Belize enjoy tax-exempt status, ensuring that maximum resources are utilized towards the cause. However, they must operate in a transparent manner, keeping accurate financial records, and may be subject to audits. The non-profit nature and the noble cause associated with NGOs can attract donations and grants from all over the world. Moreover, there’s a sense of global community and cooperation in NGOs, as they often collaborate with international bodies and may receive funding and support from global organizations.

Belizean Trust

Type Designations Minimum Share Capital Taxes
Belizean Trust N/A N/A Exempt (specific conditions apply)

A Belizean Trust refers to a legal arrangement where assets are placed under the control of a trustee, who manages them for the benefit of others (beneficiaries). Belizean Trusts are utilized for various purposes, including wealth management, asset protection, estate planning, and confidentiality.

Individuals with substantial assets, family wealth, or international investments often establish trusts in Belize. These entities are also used by individuals who want to manage their assets in a way that ensures financial stability for their dependents long into the future.

One of the primary advantages of a Belizean Trust is the high level of privacy it offers, as the details of the trust arrangement are not publicly accessible. Trusts in Belize also offer robust asset protection, as they are generally not subject to judgments from foreign courts. Furthermore, they are exempt from several forms of taxes, provided that beneficiaries are not residents of Belize. However, to maintain these benefits, trusts must comply with regulations set forth in the Belize Trusts Act, which requires proper administration and may involve specific stipulations regarding the appointment of trustees and the operation of the trust.

Common questions

What is the primary advantage of setting up an IBC in Belize?

The primary advantage of establishing an International Business Company (IBC) in Belize revolves around its favorable tax structure. Belize IBCs benefit from complete tax exemption on all business activities conducted outside the country. This includes exemptions from income tax, capital gains tax, and dividend tax. Apart from the tax benefits, Belize ensures robust asset protection, keeping the identities of shareholders and directors confidential. The quick and straightforward registration process, combined with low annual fees, makes Belize an attractive jurisdiction for international entrepreneurs.

How easy is it to set up a company in Belize?

Establishing a company in Belize is comparatively simple and efficient. With a pro-business regulatory environment, Belize provides a smooth registration process, often completing company incorporation within 48 hours. Additionally, there’s no requirement for physical presence during the setup, and many service providers offer online registration. Coupled with minimal reporting obligations and no need for annual general meetings, Belize becomes an appealing destination for businesspersons seeking a hassle-free incorporation experience.

Are there any restrictions on the type of business an IBC can conduct?

In Belize, an IBC is prohibited from conducting business with residents within Belize or owning real estate in the country. They’re also barred from carrying out banking, insurance, or trust company operations unless they obtain the necessary license. However, outside these restrictions, IBCs have a vast realm of business activities they can engage in internationally.

How does Belize's regulatory environment support foreign entrepreneurs?

Belize’s regulatory framework is designed with a pro-business mindset. It offers a blend of flexibility and robustness. There are minimal reporting requirements, negating the need for annual audits for IBCs. This simplicity is coupled with strong asset protection mechanisms, ensuring that business assets remain safeguarded against lawsuits and claims. Moreover, Belize’s adherence to international treaties on investment protection offers an added layer of assurance to foreign entrepreneurs. In essence, Belize provides a conducive, secure, and low-bureaucracy environment for businesses to flourish.

What kind of businesses might not be suitable for IBC registration in Belize?

While Belize’s IBC framework offers immense advantages, it isn’t a one-size-fits-all solution. Businesses intending to operate extensively within Belize, or those aiming to buy real estate within the country, might not find the IBC structure beneficial. Furthermore, if you’re planning to establish a bank, insurance agency, or trust company, you’ll need specialized licenses, and the IBC framework alone wouldn’t suffice. It’s crucial for businesses to evaluate their long-term goals and operational needs before deciding on Belize’s IBC incorporation.

How does the absence of local director or shareholder requirements benefit foreign investors?

The non-mandate of local directors or shareholders empowers foreign investors with unparalleled control and flexibility. Investors can maintain complete ownership, make decisions without local interventions, and structure the board according to their strategic needs. This not only simplifies the management and decision-making process but also ensures that profits, assets, and business directions are in sync with the parent company’s or investor’s vision without local dilutions.

Is Belize's political and economic scenario conducive to long-term investments?

Belize, with its democratic framework, presents political stability. Historically, changes in political leadership have seen smooth transitions, underpinning its mature democratic values. Economically, Belize has experienced steady growth, primarily fueled by sectors like tourism, agriculture, and offshore financial services. The government’s pro-investment stance, coupled with initiatives to bolster the nation’s infrastructure and business ecosystem, makes Belize an attractive destination for long-term investments.

How does the currency situation in Belize affect international businesses?

While Belize’s official currency is the Belize Dollar (BZD), the widespread acceptance of the US Dollar reduces the currency risk for international businesses. The pegging of the Belize Dollar to the US Dollar at a fixed rate ensures predictability in exchange rates. Furthermore, there’s no foreign exchange control, allowing businesses to repatriate profits, capital, and dividends freely, thus offering monetary fluidity essential for multinational operations.

How does Belize handle Controlled Foreign Company (CFC) regulations?

Belize does not have Controlled Foreign Company (CFC) regulations in place. This absence implies that Belizean companies, which control foreign entities, aren’t subject to local tax on their global profits until they are repatriated. It offers a significant advantage for holding companies and businesses with a global presence, as it defers potential tax liabilities.

How stable is Belize's political and economic environment?

Belize boasts a stable political environment with a democratic system in place. Its economy, largely driven by tourism and exports, has seen steady growth over the years. Additionally, Belize has established itself as a credible offshore financial center, further underpinning its economic stability. This steady political and economic landscape makes it a reliable location for international investments.

Are there any Controlled Foreign Company (CFC) rules in Belize?

As of 2023, Belize does not impose Controlled Foreign Company (CFC) rules. This means that profits retained in foreign subsidiaries of Belizean companies are not subject to local tax until they are distributed as dividends.

How is the tax system in Belize structured?

Belize offers a competitive tax structure, with individual income tax at 25% and varied corporate tax rates depending on the business type. The General Sales Tax (GST), similar to VAT, is levied at 12.5%.

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