Why Invest in The Bahamas?
The Bahamas is an archipelago of 700 islands; our breathtaking waters attract visitors and homeowners from all parts of the world who come to enjoy our pristine beaches, abundant sea life and inviting fiscal ambiance as a tax neutral jurisdiction. The term, “Isles of June” best describes the Bahamas due to its mild climate which ranges from 70 degrees Fahrenheit in winter to around 90 degrees Fahrenheit in summer.. The Bahamas is less than an hour by air from the United States of America, making it one of the most easily accessible tropical destinations. With a population estimated at 354,000 people in 2010, the country is one of a worldwide few considered “under-populated”. The Bahamas enjoys a long history of democracy. It established the first self-governing Parliament in the British Commonwealth in 1729 and became an independent Commonwealth nation in July of 1973.
Investing in The Bahamas
If you’re thinking of investing, we can provide information and guidance on aspects you may consider in the decision making process. Our agents include professionally qualified individuals with legal, banking, accountancy and insurance backgrounds, able to assist foreign investors in dynamic ways. The Bahamas is a tax-neutral jurisdiction and the choice of many international individuals and families for planning purposes.
To support an investment-friendly climate and foster the economic growth and development of The Bahamas, the Government is committed to providing:
A politically stable environment conducive to private investment;
- An atmosphere where investments are safe and the expropriation of investment capital is not considered;
- A stable macroeconomic environment bolstered by a prudent fiscal policy,
- A stable exchange rate, flexible exchange control rules and free trade;
- A legal environment based on a long tradition of parliamentary democracy, the rule of constitutional and statute laws and where security of life and personal property are guaranteed;
- An environment in which freedom from Capital Gains, Inheritance, Withholding, Profit Remittance, Corporate, Royalties, Sales, Personal Income, Dividends, Payroll and Interest taxes is ensured.
Economic, Permanent and Annual Residency
People who wish to reside in The Bahamas on an annual basis may qualify under one of the following categories, subject to formal application and approval process
Independent Economic Resident – As part of the application process, a financial reference is required from a reputable bank verifying economic worth, and two written character references are required. For an annual residence permit, a head-of-household pays $1,000 and each dependent, $25.
- Resident Homeowner or Seasonal Resident Homeowner.
Under this category, non-Bahamians who own second homes in The Bahamas may apply to the Director of Immigration for an annual homeowner’s residence card. This card is renewable annually and entitles the owner, spouse and any minor child/children endorsed on the owner’s card when travelling with the owner, to enter and remain in The Bahamas for the validity of the card. The fee is $500 per year and is intended to facilitate entry in The Bahamas with minimal formalities, entitling the holder to visit for a stay of up to one year.
Successful applicants in any of above categories are not permitted to engage in employment.
Persons may apply for permanent residence as an economic applicant; that is, one who seeks to permanently reside in The Bahamas because of Investment in a business or home.
Accelerated consideration of applications for Permanent Residence is now provided to purchases of homes valued at $1.5 million or more.
A business-sensitive legal framework and investor-friendly climate encourages non-Bahamian Investments, supported by the Bahamas Investment Authority (BIA), Ministry of Finance. Although an investor is granted a license by the Licensing Authority, a work permit must still be sought to be resident and to be an employee of/or operating business.
Investment incentives under the following Acts include exemption from the payment of customs duties on building materials, equipment and approved raw materials and real property taxes for periods up to 30 years:
- Export Manufacturing Industries Encouragement Act
- Industries Encouragement Act
- Agricultural Manufacturers Act
- Tariff Act
- Hotels Encouragement Act
- Spirits and Beer Manufacturers Act
- Family Island Development Encouragement Act
- Free Trade Zone Act
The following trade arrangements are also in effect:
- Cottoned Agreement
- Caribbean Basin Initiative
- Areas Targeted for Overseas Investment
- Touristic resorts.
- Upscale condominium, timeshare and second home development.
- Information/data processing.
- Assembly industries.
- High-tech services.
- Ship registration, repair and other ship services.
- Light manufacturing for export*.
- Food Processing*.
- Banking and other financial services.
- Captive insurance.
- Aircraft services.
- Pharmaceutical manufacture*.
- Offshore medical centres.
*International investors may engage in the wholesale distribution of any product they produce locally.