Probably one of least important features required of a tax haven, is beauty. But if an investor is planning on spending any time in the region where they do their banking, the Cook Islands offer a beautiful setting for tax free investments. While that is hardly an important criteria, it is something to consider.
The Cook Islands consist of 15 islands located west of Tahiti and Samoa, and east of Tonga. The islands themselves cover an area approximately 1.3 times the size of Washington D.C. There are 2 main groups of islands, with 9 islands being in the Southern group and Northern group consisting of 6 atolls, and the main island of Rarotonga being located 3,000 km northeast of Auckland, New Zealand.
While English is the official language, the native islanders are closely related to New Zealand’s Maoris both in culture and traditions and speak Maori as well. Agricultural exports of black pearls, copra and citrus fruits are the major economic base and employs nearly 1/3 of the population. Foreign aid to offset trade deficits are by money provided by the New Zealand government.
The islands have their own sovereign parliament, with undisputed political power. With the legal system is based on English common law, the parliament passes all laws implemented. The islands Democratic governing body consisting of a 25 member legislative assembly, a prime minister and the prime ministers cabinet. The capital is the town Avarua, located on the Island of Raratonga. The Queen of Zealand is still holds the position as head of state there, due too the close ties the Islands have in both location and economics.
Setting aside the tropical beauty of the Cook Islands, their business atmosphere seems to favor nonresidents who are looking for a tax free haven where they can invest their money. The Cook Islands have become synonymous with high profile offshore banking transactions and offshore incorporation. With no taxes being levied on capital gains and incomes, and the lack of an inheritance tax, these islands would seem like the perfect place for moving money offshore.
The Cook Islands have laws limiting the time actions can be taken against trust assets, and the laws of the Islands overrule the laws of other countries in matters relating to the transfer of property to a trust
These things, along a governing body favorable to outsiders who’s investments can only improve the Island’s economies and the English speaking banking community, makes the Cook Islands seem like an ideal place for offshore banking investments mixed with a luxurious tropical vacation.
Englishman Peter Macfarlane is an author and lecturer on offshore finance, investment, due diligence and wealth creation matters. After fifteen years advising high net worth clients on offshore asset protection structures such as companies, trusts and private interest foundations, he decided on a career change and now mentors individuals who are interested in creating, preserving and growing wealth in a secure offshore environment. Peter defines wealth in the broadest sense, believing that money is worthless if you don’t have health and happiness. He is now joint editor of The Q Wealth Report, a publication dedicated to publishing freedom, wealth and privacy information for a select audience. He offers a free sample copy to readers of EzineArticles. Visit the Q Wealth Report and learn more about offshore private banking.
Source: Peter Macfarlane