Cayman Islands offshore banks
Cayman Islands offshore service providers

Cayman flag

The Cayman Islands were colonized from Jamaica by the British during the 18th and 19th centuries. Administered by Jamaica from 1863, they remained a British dependency after 1962 when the former became independent.

With no direct taxation, the islands are a thriving offshore financial center. More than 68,000 companies were registered in the Cayman Islands as of 2003, including almost 500 banks, 800 insurers, and 5,000 mutual funds.

A stock exchange was opened in 1997. Tourism is also a mainstay, accounting for about 70% of GDP and 75% of foreign currency earnings. The tourist industry is aimed at the luxury market and caters mainly to visitors from North America.

Total tourist arrivals exceeded 2.1 million in 2003, with about half from the US. About 90% of the islands' food and consumer goods must be imported. The Caymanians enjoy one of the highest outputs per capita and one of the highest standards of living in the world.

The Cayman Islands' tax-free status has attracted numerous banks and other companies to its shores.

Large corporations based in the Cayman Islands include Seagate Technology, Semiconductor Manufacturing International Corporation (SMIC), Garmin Ltd. and Transocean Inc. The Cayman Islands Stock Exchange was opened in 1997.

GDP: per capita (2007 estimate): U.S. $48,290
(2007 est., purchasing power parity): $2.569 billion.

Caymanian dollars (KYD) per US dollar - NA (2007), 0.8496 (2006)

Cayman pic

There is no income tax or capital gains tax or corporation tax.

Some incorporation benefits:
a Cayman exempted company does not have to file an annual return detailing its shareholders with the Registrar of Companies.
company's register of members is not open to inspection.
does not have to hold an annual general meeting.
may obtain an undertaking against the imposition of any future taxation that is usually given for 20 years in the first instance and is renewable.
may register by way of continuation in another jurisdiction and be de-registered in the Cayman Islands.
may register as a limited duration company. A limited duration company must have two shareholders of record and has a maximum life of 30 years.

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