As published on internationalinvestment.net, Thursday 22 October, 2020.
The British Virgin Islands has been ranked the number one offshore jurisdiction for 10 years in a row now by VISTRA.
According to the VISTRA 2030 report, the British Virgin Islands' most valued attributes are its stability, expertise, flexibility and ability to offer global reach, which the report states accounts for the BVI's "enduring stickiness".
Of 17 jurisdictions listed, the BVI ranks fifth in perceived importance, and outranks other offshore jurisdictions. Singapore, a midshore jurisdiction, ranks number one overall.
The report states that the BVI and some other offshore jurisdictions continue to "add significant value for clients, so it is no surprise that they are defying the doubters who have predicted their demise".
"Clients value the BVI's modern and flexible legal structure too. It facilitates the formation of cross-border entities and guarantees strong shareholder protections that promote co-investing - protections that are not always available in other jurisdictions."
The report also named the BVI as a neutral intermediary where clients can "swiftly set up new BVI structures that are globally recognised and accepted for international business". This trend is especially significant to clients from emerging markets which may find it easier to use intermediary structures.
The British Virgin Islands (BVI) has been ranked as the number one offshore jurisdiction since the first study which was launched in 2010.
One legal head of a corporate services firm opined that the offshore centres that continue to thrive are the Crown Dependencies and Overseas Territories are "expert in serving specialist needs and can provide more flexibility than the bigger financial centres".
While respondents expect a shift towards midshore and onshore centres, the report states: "the decline of offshore has consistently been overstated over the past decade". It also credits the BVI as being "extremely resilient" and remains "near the top of the global rankings ever since the study began."