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Isle of Man finance centre PDF Print E-mail

Isle of Man finance centre

The Isle of Man is unique in being able to offer expatriates an exceptional quality of life, coupled with a modern and progressive economy.

The Island has a world-leading telecoms and communications infrastructure, is home to a wide range of lawyers, accountants and professional investment advisers, and is conveniently only an hour’s flying time to London.

The Isle of Man’s national taxation strategy incorporates a number of measures, the most significant being a move to a standard zero rate of corporate tax with effect from 6th April 2006, with the exception of a small number of companies that will be taxed on certain income sources at a rate of 10 per cent, principally those holding a banking licence.

This, combined with no capital gains, inheritance or wealth taxes, means the island is the ideal location for your investments.

There are no restrictions on relocation to the island, other than those under the Immigration Act which apply equally in the UK. And there are no restrictions on buying property either.

20 things you should know about the Isle of Man

1. It is located in the Irish Sea at a point that is approximately equidistant between England, Scotland and Northern Ireland.

2. Offshore banking, manufacturing and tourism are the three largest sectors of the Island’s economy and account for the vast majority of its GDP (35.1 per cent in 2005).

3. The four key areas within the Isle of Man’s financial services sector are: banking, funds, insurance & pensions, and corporate services.

4. It is a low-tax economy with income tax rates of 10 per cent and 18 per cent and a zero per cent rate for corporate tax –which may become even more attractive following the annual budget in March.

5. The government offer incentives to financial institutions and high-technology companies to locate their business on the Island.

6. The Island became the most competitive jurisdiction in Europe for both the formation and the operation of international business companies on 1 November 2006. With renewed flexibility, a better structure and simplifications of many procedures, it is hoped that it will prove encouraging for businesses to relocate.

7. There are currently 48 licensed banks located on the Isle of Man. Expat investors can choose from majority of the world leading banks including; HSBC Offshore, Abbey National Offshore, Anglo Irish Bank, Royal Bank of Scotland International, and NatWest – a lot of whom offer additional online offshore services.

8. Banks need to obtain a license to conduct business on the Isle of Man, meaning that they must conform to certain strict criteria laid down by the FSA. If granted one, the bank is then subject to the terms of the Investor Protection Legislation which both helps prevent money laundering and effectively protects 75 per cent of the first £20,000 of the account holder’s assets (or the Sterling equivalent).

9. Before granting this license, the FSA rigorously examine an institution’s track record, its financial standing, the financial status of any parent company, the overall quality of the institution and its management – a comforting fact for an expat investor who wants to know their money is in safe hands.

10. Majority of the banks are engaged in providing private banking services to UK expatriates and foreign nationals.

11. A lot of funds are based on the Island – totalling up to 422 at the end of 2006 – and include HSBC, Anglo Irish and Fortis, due to tax breaks and lower operating costs meaning that investors get the best deal.

12. The Isle of Man accounts for approximately 80 of the total 1550 listings on AIM

13. Many of the Island’s financial institutions have already been established for more than 100 years.

14. Personal tax allowance increased in February 2006 to £8,670 for a single person and £17,340 for married couples, whilst the income tax threshold increased to £10,500 with a cap of £100,000 in any one year for an individual.

15. The Island is a self-governing crown dependency, which has been under English control since the 14th Century. The British monarch was made Head of State in 1765.

16. The UK has paramount power to legislate for the Island and is responsible for its defence. It is not deemed to be a member of the EU, and therefore the UK takes responsibility for the Island’s international relations and ultimately for its ‘good governance’

17. There is no ‘Manx citizenship’ and all islanders are classed as British citizens – although those with non-British descendance are not allowed to freely live and work in the EU due to an endorsement in their passports.

18. The island’s ancient parliament, known as Tynwald, was established in 979AD and comprises the House of Keys and the Legislative Council, who together have a high degree of autonomy over Manx legislation.

19. The Island lies outside the European Economic Area (EEA) and therefore is not a member of the EU. Although Manx people, capital and services are not allowed to be freely moved within the EEA, the Island's goods are.

20. The full range of services available in the Isle of Man includes; Accountancy, tax advice and audit, personal and corporate banking, investment management, advice and dealing, international pensions and life assurance, mutual fund products and fund management, bond and securitisation issues and global custody.

5 things you might not

• The Bee Gees were born and raised on the Isle of Man, and it was where Barry wrote the music for Saturday Night Fever.

• It was used as a base for Alien Civilian Internment camps in both the First and Second World Wars.

• The Island has a road with no speed restrictions meaning drivers can go as fast as they like, so it comes as no shock that journalist and Top Gear host, Jeremy Clarkson, lives in a Manx lighthouse!

• Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets, the second film based on the Harry Potter series of books, was filmed on the Isle of Man, as was 90s hit children’s TV drama Five Children and It.

• The Island receives electricity through the world's longest submarine AC cable, the 90 kV Isle of Man to England Interconnector.

For further information please visit our website or email us


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