Anguilla, which formally separated from St. Kitts and Nevis in 1981, is a British Dependent Territory enjoying a high degree of political and economic stability with a well-regulated financial services industry. This island of 35 square miles is located about one hundred miles east of Puerto Rico, close to the British Virgin Islands. It is home to over 13,000 people who are mostly of Afro-Caribbean origin.
One of the more commendable features about Anguilla’s company registration system is the Anguilla’s Commercial On-line Registration Network (ACORN), which went live in 1998. It is able to facilitate the incorporation of companies such as International Business Companies (IBCs) and Limited Liability Companies (LLCs) 24 hours a day, 365 days a year, from anywhere in the world via the internet through licenced company managers and trust companies together with their approved overseas agents.
For further information, please visit the government website.
Anguilla is a common law jurisdiction, supplemented by local statutes enacted by the local House of Assembly. In 1994, with the British Government’s technical assistance and funding, corporate and financial legislation was enacted. Amendments were made at the end of 1998, 2000 and in 2006 when the Custody of Bearer Shares Regulations were introduced. Today, businesses incorporated in Anguilla are governed either by the Companies Ordinance 1994 or the International Business Companies Act (amended in 1998 and 2000).
Anguilla is a neutral tax jurisdiction, with all companies registered benefiting from Anguilla’s zero-tax advantage.
Chinese character names are permitted and can be included on a company’s Certificate of Incorporation.
IBCs are required to have at least one director, who is either an individual or company. A company secretary is not mandatory, and there is no requirement for this office or the office of director to be present locally. IBCs may purchase or redeem their own shares. Meetings do not have to be held in Anguilla and can be conducted via telephone or other electronic means. The minimum number of shareholders required is one with both registered and bearer shares being permitted. As set out in the Custody of Bearer Shares Regulations, all bearer shares of an IBC incorporated before 23 November 2006 must be converted to registered shares or passed to a custodian on or before 31 December 2010. An IBC incorporated on or after 23 November 2006 that had issued a bearer share must deliver the share to a custodian who has agreed to hold the share. All companies must have a Registered Office and a Registered Agent in Anguilla. IBCs do not have to file any annual returns, and only an annual fee needs to be paid. Details of directors and shareholders are not on any public record, but these details must be kept at the Registered Office of the company.
Although ordinary Anguilla-resident companies can be used for offshore purposes, IBCs are generally preferred given the ease of formation and the limited reporting requirements. This preference is even greater if the IBC does not intend to carry out business in Anguilla.
The professional infrastructure is well-developed, with major accounting firms, numerous legal practices and banks represented on the island. Communications facilities in Anguilla are well-developed with internat.