Mr Mirza Manraj

Mirza Manraj

Updates

Banking

Launching an ICO in British Virgin Islands
British Virgin Islands | 15 December 2017

Interest in the setting up and distribution of initial coin offerings (ICOs) in the British Virgin Islands and other offshore locations has increased rapidly during 2017, and this is expected to continue. No ICO or blockchain-specific rules or guidelines have yet been issued by the government or regulator; however, there are several important issues for parties in the British Virgin Islands to consider, including the key laws and regulations surrounding the issue.

Corporate Tax

Tax information exchange: an overview
British Virgin Islands | 26 January 2018

The BVI tax information exchange system is largely modelled on international principles developed by the Organisation for Economic Cooperation and Development and is split into two types of regime. The 'automatic' exchange of information regime requires financial institutions to exchange formulistic data about the accounts of foreign taxpayers, while the 'on request' regime deals with specific and potentially in-depth investigations into the affairs of named taxpayers with offshore or international holdings.

International Trade

Iran sanctions to be repealed in line with EU/UK position
British Virgin Islands | 23 September 2016

Under the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action, the European Union and the United Kingdom agreed to terminate or relax nuclear-related economic and financial sanctions, including related designations. Once the BVI 2011 direction is repealed, the British Virgin Islands' position will be further aligned with that of the United Kingdom and be in keeping with the relaxation of the Iran restrictions.

Private Client & Offshore Services

Tax information exchange: an overview
British Virgin Islands | 25 January 2018

The BVI tax information exchange system is largely modelled on international principles developed by the Organisation for Economic Cooperation and Development and is split into two types of regime. The 'automatic' exchange of information regime requires financial institutions to exchange formulistic data about the accounts of foreign taxpayers, while the 'on request' regime deals with specific and potentially in-depth investigations into the affairs of named taxpayers with offshore or international holdings.

Launching an ICO in British Virgin Islands
British Virgin Islands | 14 December 2017

Interest in the setting up and distribution of initial coin offerings (ICOs) in the British Virgin Islands and other offshore locations has increased rapidly during 2017, and this is expected to continue. No ICO or blockchain-specific rules or guidelines have yet been issued by the government or regulator; however, there are several important issues for parties in the British Virgin Islands to consider, including the key laws and regulations surrounding the issue.

New beneficial ownership regime takes effect
British Virgin Islands | 03 August 2017

The British Virgin Islands has enacted legislation to implement a networked database of beneficial ownership interests in companies incorporated or domiciled in the jurisdiction. The Beneficial Ownership Secure Search System aims to ensure that the British Virgin Islands can comply with its obligations under the UK Exchange of Notes Agreement, which modernises the way in which BVI competent authorities may gain access to beneficial ownership information of BVI companies.

Getting financial services licensees in shape for the Caribbean FATF inspection
British Virgin Islands | 20 July 2017

The British Virgin Islands is expected to undergo its fourth round of mutual evaluation by the Caribbean Financial Action Task Force in 2018, based on the Financial Action Task Force's International Standards on Combating Money Laundering and the Financing of Terrorism and Proliferation. In preparation, the Financial Services Commission has commenced a preliminary exercise to ensure that relevant persons have complied with the international standards requirements.

FSC signs multilateral memorandum with GIFCS
British Virgin Islands | 13 July 2017

The BVI Financial Services Commission recently signed a multilateral memorandum of understanding between members of the Group of International Financial Centre Supervisors. The objective of the memorandum is to ensure clarity and effective regulatory cooperation between the authorities responsible for supervising the banking sector in signatory jurisdictions.

New law gives FSC discretion to restrict publication of enforcement actions
British Virgin Islands | 08 June 2017

The Financial Services Commission Act 2001 was recently amended. The key revisions relate to the routine publication of fines and penalties levied by the Financial Services Commission (FSC). For example, the FSC now has the discretion to determine the types of case where publication of the enforcement may be restricted.

Amended anti-money laundering and terrorist financing code gazetted
British Virgin Islands | 27 April 2017

Schedule 2 of the Anti-money Laundering and Terrorist Financing Code of Practice 2008 sets out a list of jurisdictions with laws and regulations similar to those of the British Virgin Islands. The principal advantage of relying on Schedule 2 is that business coming from recognised jurisdictions will generally attract the application of reduced client due diligence measures.

FSC issues new guidelines on money services business
British Virgin Islands | 12 January 2017

The Financial Services Commission recently published a guide to ensure that money service business providers and the wider industry are protected by helping to sensitise various stakeholders on matters surrounding money laundering, terrorist financing and other forms of financial crime. The guide touches on customer due diligence, the implementation of internal controls, suspicious activity reports and record keeping, and outlines relevant legislation.

Iran sanctions to be repealed in line with EU/UK position
British Virgin Islands | 22 September 2016

Under the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action, the European Union and the United Kingdom agreed to terminate or relax nuclear-related economic and financial sanctions, including related designations. Once the BVI 2011 direction is repealed, the British Virgin Islands' position will be further aligned with that of the United Kingdom and be in keeping with the relaxation of the Iran restrictions.

Extension of compliance period under AML Regulations 2008
British Virgin Islands | 26 May 2016

The Anti-money Laundering (AML) (Amendment) Regulations 2015 recently came into effect, amending the AML Regulations 2008. The schedule to the new regulations provides a date of compliance for every 'relevant person' conducting 'relevant business', subject to any extension of time sought. The Financial Services Commission recently issued guidance notes which modify the compliance date and outline the conditions of applying for an extension.

FSC recognises overseas stock and commodities exchanges
British Virgin Islands | 25 February 2016

The Financial Services Commission (FSC) recently issued the Regulatory Code (Recognised Exchanges) Notice under powers set out in the Regulatory Code. The recognised exchanges listed include some of the most important stock and commodity exchanges in the world. Companies listed on recognised exchanges can benefit from light-touch know-your-customer due diligence processes when dealing with BVI-regulated credit or financial institutions.

Japan-BVI TIEA comes into force
British Virgin Islands | 20 November 2014

The Tax Information Exchange Agreement (TIEA) between Japan and the British Virgin Islands came into effect on October 11 2014. The BVI-Japan TIEA is consistent with the Organisation for Economic Cooperation and Development standard model template for TIEAs. It provides for assistance through exchange of information relevant to the administration or enforcement of the laws of both countries concerning taxes.

National risk assessment scheduled
British Virgin Islands | 24 July 2014

The British Virgin Islands is scheduled to undergo its fourth round of mutual evaluation by the Caribbean Financial Action Task Force in 2017, based on the Financial Action Task Force's International Standards on Combating Money Laundering and the Financing of Terrorism and Proliferation. The Cabinet has established the National Risk Assessment Council to manage this process effectively.

White Collar Crime

Amended anti-money laundering and terrorist financing code gazetted
British Virgin Islands | 01 May 2017

Schedule 2 of the Anti-money Laundering and Terrorist Financing Code of Practice 2008 sets out a list of jurisdictions with laws and regulations similar to those of the British Virgin Islands. The principal advantage of relying on Schedule 2 is that business coming from recognised jurisdictions will generally attract the application of reduced client due diligence measures.

Extension of compliance period under AML Regulations 2008
British Virgin Islands | 30 May 2016

The Anti-money Laundering (AML) (Amendment) Regulations 2015 recently came into effect, amending the AML Regulations 2008. The schedule to the new regulations provides a compliance date for every 'relevant person' conducting 'relevant business', subject to any time extension sought. The Financial Services Commission recently issued guidance notes which modify the compliance date and outline the application conditions for an extension.