Offshore Banking in Saint Vincent and the Grenadines

What is the article about?

The following information is an overview of jurisdiction, offshore banks, and the process for applying for a banking license in Saint Vincent and the Grenadines.



The island state of Saint Vincent and the Grenadines is located in the Caribbean Sea and is part of the archipelago of the small Antilles, south of Saint Lucia and north of Grenada. From the west it is washed by the waters of the Caribbean Sea, from the east - by the Atlantic Ocean.

The territory includes the relatively large island of Saint Vincent and about 30 small islands belonging to the group of the Northern Grenadines (Bokia, Mystic, Petit-Mustique, Canouan, Petit Canouan, Baliso, Savan, Union, Mero, Palm Island, Petit- Nevis, Il-la-Quatre, Pigeon Island, etc.), as well as the reefs of Tobago. The total area of the islands is 389.3 km ², of which Saint Vincent is 344 km ², and the Grenadines is 45.3 km ².

St. Vincent Island was discovered by Christopher Columbus on January 22, 1498, on St. John's Day. Vincent.

Saint Vincent and the Grenadines is a member of the British Commonwealth and the United Nations. The official language is English.

Saint Vincent & the Grenadines historically is an offshore center that dates back to 1976, but the need for modernization, updated legislation led to the introduction of offshore banking laws in 1996.

Taxes in Saint Vincent and the Grenadines

Saint Vincent and the Grenadines does not have a tax:

  1. There is no corporate tax, no profit tax, no withholding tax, no capital gains tax.
  2. There is no state fee for any kind of business management.
  3. There is no tax on real estate, inherited real estate, taxes on hereditary property.

Types of licenses

Given due diligence, there are two types of banking licenses that can be issued in St. Vincent and the Grenadines:

  1. A bank license of class "A", which generally allows offshore banking;
  2. A banking license of class "B", which allows offshore banking with individuals or legal entities that do not reside permanently in the territory of the country (non-residents) or groups specifically described in written decisions attached to the application. Basically, this license allows offshore banking only for those lists of customers submitted at the time of applying for a license.

Bank license of class "A"

Capital requirements

The minimum repayable capital of $ 1,000,000 or equivalent in another currency is required for an "A" class license. $500,000 or equivalent in another currency of this paid-up capital must be invested or contributed in the bank in accordance with the procedure established by the Financial Services Authority of Saint Vincent and the Grenadines. $ 500,000 US, as a rule, may be limited in capacity by law.


• US $ 1,000,000 - minimum amount of the authorized capital.

• US $ 500,000 - mandatory deposit.

Banking license of Class "B"

The minimum paid-up capital must be at the rate of $ 500,000 US or equivalent in another currency for a "B" class license. $100,000 or equivalent in another currency of this paid-up capital must be invested or deposited in the bank in the manner prescribed by the Financial Services Authority of Saint Vincent and the Grenadines. $ 100,000 US, as a rule, may be limited in capacity by law.


• US $ 500 000 - minimum amount of the authorized capital.

• US $ 100,000 - mandatory deposit.

Requirements to the applicant


An applicant for an offshore bank must "have the right to hold a position in the company," which means:

(a) a legal entity

I. have at least one director who is resident (from the SVG);

II. registered, existing, confirming the continuation of authority or registered as an independent company in accordance with the Companies Act (from the SVG); or

III. registered, existing, confirming the continuation of the authority in accordance with the Law on International Business Companies

An international business company (IBC) is generally preferred over a local company, because:

  1. The IBC does not need to submit any statements to the Department of Internal Taxes, while the local company requires filing an annual tax return;
  2. It is much easier to register the IBC than a local company;
  3. The IBC can be formed, in essence, within less time than a local company.


  1. An offshore bank must, as soon as possible, have not less than two directors who are individuals and one of whom must be a resident of Saint Vincent and the Grenadines.
  2. All directors must be approved by the Financial Services Authority.


  1. Senior bank employees or managers should have a large and practical experience of doing business in the banking sector.
  2. All senior staff must be approved by the Financial Services Authority.
  3. Junior employees should not be approved by the authorized body.


  1. Shareholders must have sufficient equity and assets to contribute to the bank's capital.
  2. Only registered shares can be issued and they can not be transferred or liquidated without the prior written permission of the Financial Services Authority.
  3. All shareholders must be approved by the Financial Services Authority.

Legal due diligence

The legal due diligence in the state of Saint Vincent and the Grenadines is extremely thorough. The audit should be conducted for all shareholders, directors and senior officials (president, vice president, corporate secretary, etc.) proposed by the bank.

In the event that the director or shareholder is a legal entity, there must be full disclosure of this company, including audited financial statements, the names of all shareholders, directors and officers. The verification of the beneficial owners and directors of this legal entity may be required.

All shareholders, directors and senior officers must complete:

  • form of legal due diligence;
  • the personal Questionnaire form.

and submit the following documents:

  1. Copies of the passport.
  2. Copies of driver's license.
  3. Copies of the identity card.
  4. Copies of social security cards.
  5. Two bank recommendations.
  6. One written recommendation.
  7. Police file.
  8. Curriculum Vitae (C.V.).

Clear copies of identity documents (passport, driver's license, identity card) must be provided. Documents that are not clear, poorly copied or illegible in any way will not be accepted.

Identity documents must be certified (notarized / apostilled).

A copy of the passport should include all pages that show the following data:

  • number and country of issue;
  • issue and expiration date;
  • signature of the person;

All recommendations should be addressed to:

Ms. Karen Jackso


International Financial Services (IFS)

Financial Services Authority

2nd Floor NIS Building

Upper Bay Street

P.O. Box 356

Kingstown, VC0100

St. Vincent & the Grenadines

Police file

It is necessary to provide documentation that every person who is involved with the bank has no criminal record.

Shareholders are also required to provide:

  1. Approved financial statement of own capital.
  2. Confirmation from the auditors that they do not have any financial liability.

The approved financial statement of equity is a personal balance sheet. This document, which lists the client's assets, liabilities and equity, is signed by the client and certified by the auditor or accountant. This document should not be filled by directors. This is for shareholders only.

For each document that is not provided in English, there must be a certified translation of this document into English, and in addition there must be original documents.

Business plan

A thorough business plan must be submitted with the application. The business plan should include financial forecasts for at least five years, together with the assumptions and justifications for these assumptions.


The name of the bank's prospective auditors must be submitted together with a confirmation from the said auditors.

Time to process the application

A completed application can be processed and accepted by the Financial Services Authority within three months. Most delays in processing the application for a banking license are due to the provision of incomplete information on proper execution.

The cost of a banking license

The cost of applying for a banking license is $ 20,000 plus state fees.

Information that you need to indicate in the applications

In order to obtain a license in accordance with the present Law, the Company must submit the following data in writing to the authority that must accompany and are part of the application, established by the authority for use in accordance with this Law:

  1. The name of the applicant.
  2. Address in the state, its location, name and address of the registered agent in the state.
  3. The names, addresses, citizenship and residences of all directors, shareholders, employees, managers and, in the case of a public company, only the names and addresses of shareholders who own ten percent of the capital issued by shareholders or more.
  4. The names and addresses of attorneys, if any, a statement along with a letter from lawyers confirming that they are acting in the interests of the applicant.
  5. The names and addresses of the applicant's auditors, together with a letter from the auditors, confirming that they do not object to represent interests of the applicant.
  6. Data in writing that the applicant himself or several persons are directly or indirectly connected with the applicant and have a large and practical experience in the banking business.
  7. Certifying document from the police department that there is no previous criminal records.
  8. The annual financial statements of the company, if any, for the three preceding years and thereafter are annually audited and certified by an independent auditor.
  9. Names of all affiliated companies of the applicant with their legal addresses.
  10. Copies of the constituent agreement and internal documents of the applicant company, certified by the resident of the applicant's director.
  11. The applicant must submit a business plan containing the following:

(a) a description of the company's objectives;

(b) the proposed client base;

(c) the opening of the balance and the forecasts for three years certified by the auditor;

(d) the management structure;

(e) policies and regulations to combat money-laundering;

(e) feasibility study;

(d) the nature and source of financing of capital investments;

(h) a description of the internal control system; and

(i) a copy of the ownership structure, including group members and affiliated companies.

All directors, managers, senior officers and shareholders must complete the required questionnaire.


The foregoing is an overview of the requirements for obtaining a banking license and is by no means exhaustive. If you have any questions or need more information, the professionals of our Company will always help you. We know how to promote the development of your company abroad. The highly qualified staff of Law&Trust International will help you obtain a banking license in Saint Vincent and the Grenadines as soon as possible.