Investing Offshore can be a very attractive option for the discerning investor that would like to explore other markets, shield his investments from onerous capital lawsuits, or grow his assets in a confidential, secure investment not governed by the rules and regulations of his home jurisdiction.
While Offshore investments might be, at first glance or to the uninitiated, associated with a tremendous amount of risk in low-sophistication environments or jurisdictions, these assumptions would be grossly incorrect. Offshore investment vehicles are usually found in jurisdictions that have quite sophisticated rules, regulations, and policies that direct how deposits and investments are handled and managed within their jurisdictions. Let’s remember that these are often the same jurisdictions that rely upon Offshore capital for their banking institutions and are hence quite concerned that they maintain their hard-earned reputations as low-regulation, high-confidentiality tax havens.
Benefits of Offshore Investing
Most American investors look to these Offshore investments for purposes of diversifying their investment portfolios, spreading their risk in a wide an arc as possible, and also very importantly, shield assets from lawsuits.
Citizens of other countries may look for these same benefits in Offshore investments, and many times also look for the stability afforded in these Offshore jurisdictions. They may already bank in an Offshore institution in order to safeguard their assets from political or economic turmoil in their home country, and investing in these same haven jurisdictions is the next logical step in maintaining and growing their assets.
Tax is the driving force behind 'offshore', but for the great majority of well-off individuals considering offshore investment, tax is not directly an issue. They reside in high-tax areas such as the EU, the US, Canada or Japan, they pay their taxes, and if they make 'offshore' investments, it is in pursuit of higher returns, and without any intention to evade taxes in their home countries.
Some investors are outside the catchment of the high-tax areas, either because they live elsewhere, or because they are temporarily non-resident for work reasons. Such investors can often avoid having to pay taxes on their investments, whether on- or offshore, but that is due to the investor's circumstances, not the location of the investment.
So why might an 'offshore' investment be superior to an onshore investment?
The first answer is because it is more lightly regulated, and the behaviour of the offshore investment provider, whether he be a banker, fund manager, trustee or stock-broker, is freer than it could be in a more regulated environment. Any G7 regulator will immediately say, oh, of course, if it's unregulated, then it is riskier. Well, they would say that, wouldn't they?
Offshore investments can be as sound and secure as any home-based investment, with the same inherent risk-benefit scales. They provide added value to any investment strategy or portfolio by lending said portfolio added diversification, flexible investment vehicles not available in the home jurisdiction, and substantial lawsuit protection.
Our company registered in the Public Registry of Panama is an offshore investment company operating.
The Government of Panama does not tax income produced from sources outside the country. Other factors have also played a part, including the absence of any currency restrictions, the free international movement of capital and convenient taxation law focused on the offshore businesses. Long recognized as a commercial hub, Panama has developed into a banking and foreign exchange center.