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To obtain a business license in the Bahamas

The Bahamas is surely becoming not only one of the most famous resort islands, but also beginning to attract businessmen with its favorable business conditions. Therefore, if you decide to register a company in the Bahamas, you can bring your business not only to the arena of island states, but also to the international level. At the same time, you need to be aware, that the registration of a local Bahamian company is different from the process of opening an offshore in the Bahamas.

If you want to set up an offshore in the Bahamas, then according to laws of this island state, you cannot conduct your detail on the island. In order to open a business in the Bahamas, with the further goal of doing business on the island, you must obtain a license for commercial activity in the Bahamas. This license allows the legal right to conduct business in the Bahamas.

You can obtain a business license in the Bahamas for both residents of the country and foreign entrepreneurs, who want to open a branch in the Bahamas or register business in the Bahamas. In 2010, the state of the island adopted a law according to which entrepreneurial activity in the Bahamas should be licensed. Also, companies, that are registered on the island, are required to comply with this law.

The Ministry of Finance on the island is considering applications from entrepreneurs, who want to get a business license in the Bahamas. Approximately 7 days will be considered by the authorized island body to consider the application for a business license for conducting business in the Bahamas by an authorized island body. The first step to obtaining a business license in the Bahamas is to fill out a special form. This form is then submitted to the Treasury of the island or directly to the Bahamas Ministry of Finance. Businesses on the island of New Providence need to apply for a business license in the Bahamas at the Ministry of Finance. If you plan to register an offshore in the Bahamas, but you will conduct business outside the island, an application for a business license is filed with the local district council or the Bahamas Port Authority.

Registering a business license for conducting business in the Bahamas is necessary if you are an owner in the Bahamas:

  • Limited Liability Company;
  • Private Trading Company;
  • Public Trading Company;
  • Limited Partnership;
  • A private business.

It is worth noting, that entrepreneurs in different areas of business receive certain business licenses for each area of ​​commercial activity.

If you want to open a business in the Bahamas, your company will have to submit an annual report, as well as pay a license fee as a percentage, which corresponds to the total amount of income.

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A company registered in the Bahamas pays an annual state fee in the amount of:
  • 0,5% - if the company's turnover is $50,000-$500,000 per year;
  • 0,75% - if the company's turnover is $500,000-$5,000,000 per year;
  • 1,25% - if the company's turnover is $5,000,000-$500,000,000 per year;
  • 1,5% - if the company’s turnover exceeds $500,000,000 per year.

A single rate of 0,75% is rallied for entrepreneurs, who are engaged in the agriculture, a food processing, a fish, livestock or fishing industries on the island. For the convenience of paying the annual licensed state tax, the Bahamas has introduced a special online system called Online Tax Administration (OTAS), which can be easily used via the Internet, because you can pay from anywhere in the world.

In order to obtain a business license in the Bahamas, you must submit such following documents:
  • Copies of passports of beneficiaries/founders;
  • The extract from the Social Insurance Fund;
  • A copy of a company registration certificate.

The registered capital in order to obtain a business license in the Bahamas is $100,000. But, if you re-apply for a business license in the Bahamas, the authorized capital will be assigned by a government agency, that reviews applications from companies for a business license in the Bahamas.

For more information, please, receive for personal advice on business licenses opening with IQ Decision lawyers.

  • The information outlined in the article is actual at the time of its publication.

  • Please refer to our specialists for checking possible solutions for your business.

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