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Virgin Island Tax Break

Aug 17, 2007
If you have your own firm and you're sick and tired of Uncle Sam reaping too much of your hard earned profits, you might consider moving to St. Thomas or other parts of the United States Virgin Islands (USVI). Here not only can you enjoy a year round paradise of pristine white sand beaches, palm trees, low humidity day after sunny 80 degree day, but, through its Economic Development Council (EDC) you can also save about 90% on your U.S. business income tax.

The primary mission of the USVI EDC is written in its Title 29 bylaws. The Economic Development Commission has offices not only in St. Croix and St. Thomas but also in Washington DC and New York City. The objectives and general purpose of the organization is to encourage the growth of industry and business in the U.S. Virgin Islands and to assist in its development, expansion and creation. A side mandate, one that is a result of the EDC's success in its mission is the growth of job opportunities for resident of USVI.

Companies have to qualify for the help of the EDC but those who do receive a number of benefits, the best of which is a reduction of 90 percent in the income tax they must pay to the U.S. federal government.

One might wonder why U.S. businesses aren't flocking to the Virgin Islands for this benefit and why the Economic Development Commission hasn't been overrun by applications. The simple truth seems to be that U.S. companies, and individuals who want to become entrepreneurs have just not learned about this wonderful business growth and start up program.

What this means for you entrepreneurs or entrepreneur hopefuls is that the door is open wide for you to take advantage of this stupendous tax benefit before the word gets out to everyone else.

If this seems like a rather outrageous offering, and perhaps one with a catch consider this: the economy of the Virgin Islands is insular and small. Its own natural resources are scarce. As a result the USVI must heavily rely on services and exporting to generate employment and income for its residents. The territorial and U.S. federal governments put their bureaucratic heads together to come up with a series of business tax incentives that would drive growth and investment in the USVI. The major focus on this growth was expected to be on activities related to trade and export.

As of the last documented report, close to 100 firms that employed close to 6000 islanders were realizing federal tax benefits from their EDC participation. The industries were varied, and included guest houses and hotels, manufacturing and assembly, tourist attractions, service industry businesses, transportation services, and manufacturing. Of the latter, the categories including the production of aluminum, refinery of oil, watch manufacture, pharmaceuticals, rum and liquor, high tech electronic parts and assembly and construction materials.
About the Author
GR is a retired Airline Captain who has been involved in real estate and building since childhood. Now, he is retired in the US Virgin Islands where he writes and does more marketing from home. A good place to learn about the islands and to find your home is http://www.StThomasLuxuryHomes.com
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