BELTRAIDE’s six competitive business incentives that can help you decide to invest in Belize
The Government of Belize (GOB) offers investors a variety of incentives in order to help them in their decision to invest in the country. The purpose of the GOB is to provide investors with the legal framework to engage in economic activities and the incentives program was developed to grant relief to genuine investors wishing to establish a business in Belize provided their investment proposal meets the approval of the Government of Belize. As a general rule, when assessing investment proposals, GOB focuses on the economic and social benefits to be obtained from the investment. Other critical aspects of any proposal are the overall viability of the investment.
Listed below are the incentive programs currently being offered:
- Fiscal Incentives Programme (also known as development concessions). The Fiscal Incentives Programme was designed to encourage genuine investments in Belize through duty exemptions and tax holidays. The Act provides both existing and prospective investors with the legal and fiscal framework to stimulate productive economic activities.
- Export Processing Zone (EPZ). The Export Processing Zone (EPZ) Program is intended to attract both local and foreign investment to boost production for export markets with a focus on manufactured goods and non-traditional agricultural products. An EPZ is classified as a non-customs territory of the host state, where export-oriented activities are undertaken in the manufacturing, processing, assembly, and service sectors.
- Commercial Free Zone (CFZ). The Commercial Free Zone Act of 1994 was established to attract foreign investment and provides for various activities including manufacturing, processing, packaging, warehousing and distribution of goods and services. Merchandize warehoused in a CFZ may be sold free of duty wholesale or retail: (i) to diplomats of other countries, (ii) to ships that dock at ports in Belize, (iii) for direct export whether by sea, air or land, (iv) for entry into national customs territory (related import duties and taxes become payable upon entry into national customs territory).
- Qualified Retired Person’s Programme (QRP) Trusts. A special Retirement Program has been designed specifically for retirees who wish to live in Belize and can prove a permanent and consistent income from investments, pension or any other form of retirement benefit. Successful applicants are granted special Qualified Retired Person’s Status (QRP status).
- International Business Companies (IBC) Offshore Banking. The Belize International Business Companies Act is both modern and attractive and designed to meet the needs of sophisticated international investors.
- Gaming Control. This system was modeled on par with similar standards adopted by successful gaming countries, and subsequently adjusted to create a modern programme to suit the gaming industry. Gaming fosters economic growth and development through investments, which allows for job creation, transfer of skills and technology, earning of foreign exchange and linkages to the tourism sector and other sectors of the economy.