Have you ever heard the saying "no pressure, no diamonds"? That phrase perfectly frames the current situation in Portugal, a country that is a living lesson in economic recovery in the best European style.
After making the headlines in the world's leading economic newspapers for its terrible situation during the European financial crisis, Portugal is again stealing the spotlight from the international economic scene, but this time for entirely different reasons.
Today, Portugal is an example of economic growth and improvement among the European Union countries, and frankly, in the whole world.
The excellent performance of the Portuguese economy has surprised many institutions. The country has practically ended its deficit, has begun to reduce its public debt, and economic inequality is at a minimum in recent years. It has brought the unemployment rate to 2004 levels.
Mundo's country rating is essentially a freedom index whereby our team of specialists rates a combination of freedoms, including freedom from violence and personal attacks, financial freedom from high taxes and other government levies, and business freedom from government interference.
Ease of business: 8
Portugal may seem like your typical European country: High taxes, tons of regulations, and socialist policies. But if you dig a bit deeper, you will found out more than that. But, first, incorporating a structure is a swift process that takes less than a week. Second, all processes are transparent, and the public entities are efficient. Third, Madeira changes everything. The Madeira Free Zone is an oasis for lovers of the free market in Europe.
Again, if we go for the typical, Portugal might not seem a good choice. A top 48% income tax rate scares many people, and a 21% corporate tax rate is far from ideal. Yet, again Madeira stands out with its 4% corporate tax rate. Plus, if you are a Golden Visa holder, you may apply for the non-regular resident regime.
If you intend to live or invest in Portugal permanently or for an extended period, an exciting option to facilitate many procedures is to open a Madeira bank account.
Combining all these charms is enough to make anyone feel willing to open a bank account on the Portuguese island. Still, for the most demanding, here we tell you straight out the main advantages of entering the banking ecosystem in Madeira.
Security: the Portuguese banking system gives you the guarantee of operating in a credible center, supported by the European Union member states. Madeira is not considered a tax haven and therefore is not registered on international blacklists and banks are generally liquid.
Good Taxation: As an integral part of Portugal, Madeira benefits from a vast network of double taxation agreements signed by the Portuguese country.
This island also hosts the Madeira International Business Center, where entities operate that benefit from one of the most advantageous tax regimes in the European Union, with a 5% profit tax guaranteed until 2027.
Madeira was not populated when Portuguese voyagers discovered it in the 15th century.
And 600 years later, the marvels of this islands are still undiscovered.
Madeira is immediately associated with romance, its gorgeous port, and its mouthwatering cuisine. Yet, for those who know the arcane mysteries of corporate structuring, Madeira holds a more significant meaning.
Of course, we are talking about the Madeira International Business Centre. This is, by far, one of the best, if not the best, free economic zones in Europe. A 5% corporate tax rate with no other significant withholding or dividend taxes.
And no, it is not too good to be true. Madeira is a first-level corporate destination.
- Privileged access to the European trading, financial and payment entryways through Portuguese bank fully compliant with substance requirements thanks to your duly-licensed and compliant corporate structure in Madeira.
The home of Cristiano Ronaldo is best-known for its natural beauties, like Cape Girão.
Yet, avid investors love Madeira for other reasons: its trust regime.
As we have said, madeira is an autonomous region of Portugal. When Portugal joined the CEE (today EU) it agreed with the European Commission that Madeira would offer tax benefits to attract international investment. This gave birth to the International Business Centre of Madeira (IBCM).
Along with this, the Portuguese government created another amazing, and somewhat hidden benefit: a trust regime.
And if you know a bit about asset protection, you are probably wondering how, if Portugal is not a common law jurisdiction, can you establish a trust?
That is a fair question to ask. Portugal is a civil law jurisdiction, meaning its regular legislation does not regulate trusts. Thus, the government came up with a Decree-Law that authorized a trust regime with a creative solution that would not hinder the civil law regulations: When a settlor creates a trust and registers it in Madeira, they must designate the law that will regulate the trust (which can be changed in time without prior authorization).
Choosing a place to live is possibly the most crucial choice anyone faces. So many issues depend on this decision that we could not list them all if we wanted to. This is even more pressing when choosing a place for your family office.
Fortunately, some countries strive to make that decision a breeze. Today we are talking about one of those countries that have decided to bet on becoming one of the best destinations to live within Europe: Portugal, the land of Lusitanian heritage.
Portugal is one of the favorite destinations for tourists, investors, and people who want to live in a first-class jurisdiction with fiscal facilities within Europe. The key? Its Golden Visa program is widely considered to be the best in Europe.
There are only a handful of places where wealthy families can establish a wealth management structure that will allow them to grow wealth in a tax-optimized environment while protecting their assets for future generations.
Further, if you wish to manage your wealth from Europe… Choices are even scarcer due to the high taxation, invasive policies, and difficult immigration regulations. And if you want a place friendly for foreigners and with little language and cultural barriers… You can count them with the fingers of one hand.
But today we present you with one of those lucky few: Portugal. The Portuguese Golden Visa program is widely considered the best in the world and Madeira was voted one of the safest islands in Europe and almost free of COVID-19, while it has one of the most beneficial trade zones in Europe.
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