Jamaica company registration

DOING BUSINESS IN JAMAICA IN 2018

Since 2003, Healy Consultants Group PLC has assisted our Clients with starting their company in Jamaica. Our services include i) Jamaica business registration ii) assistance to license the company iii) Jamaica corporate bank account opening services iv) employee recruitment v) visa strategies and vi) office rental solutions.

Summary table of Jamaica company registration

SummaryTax resident LLCFree zone LLCR&D companyRepresentative officeBranch office
Also known asLLCFree zone companyR&D firmRep officeBranch
Best use of company?All products and servicesManufacturing and export tradingResearchMarketing & researchSpecific projects
How soon can you invoice Clients/sign sales contracts?3 weeks3 weeks3 weeks2 months2 months
How soon can you hire staff?3 weeks3 weeks3 weeks2 months2 months
How soon can you sign a lease agreement?1 week1 week1 week1 week1 week
How long to supply corporate bank account numbers?6 weeks6 weeks6 weeks6 weeks6 weeks
How long to supply company registration/tax numbers?3 weeks3 weeks3 weeks2 months2 months
Corporate tax rate on annual net profits?25%25%25%Cannot trade25%
Limited liability entity?YesYesYesNoNo
Government grants available?YesYesYesNoYes
Government approval required for foreign owners?NoNoNoNoNo
Resident director/partner/manager/ legal representative required?NoNoNoNoNo
Minimum paid up share capital?US$1US$1US$1NoneNone
Can bid for Government contracts?YesYesYesNoYes
Corporate bank account location?National Commercial BankScotiabankFirst Global BankCIBC First CaribbeanCitibank
Can secure trade finance?YesYesYesNoYes
VAT payable on sales to local customers?16.5%16.5%16.5%Cannot trade16.5%
Average total business set up engagement costs?US$9,585Request a proposalRequest a proposalUS$10,060US$11,810
Average total engagement period?3 months3 months3 months4 months4 months

Jamaica company registration summary

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  • Advantages and disadvantages

    Advantages of Jamaica company registration

    Business registration in jamaica

    1. It is possible to register a limited liability company in Jamaica with i) one director and ii) one shareholder, who can be of any nationality and be individuals or corporate bodies. The minimum paid-up capital required is only US$1 and our Clients will not need to travel to complete the engagement;
    2. Foreign investors can i) establish 100% foreign-owned businesses in Jamaica ii) own property and shares of other Jamaican business entities and iii) import/export goods and services without restrictions (other than those also applicable to locals);
    3. Once the Panama Canal expansion project is complete, Jamaica stands to benefit from a significant increase in cargo shipments to transnational locations as lots of opportunities will emerge in the maritime, air, manufacturing and logistics industries;
    4. Jamaica has signed double taxation avoidance treaties with twelve countries including i) Canada, ii) China iii) Israel and iv) Sweden among others. The country is also a member of Caribbean Community Secretariat (CARICOM) and this serves as an incentive to investors as it aims at reducing taxes and encouraging investments and easy flow of goods and services between the member countries;
    5. For all the reasons listed above, Jamaica is ranked 58th out of 189 countries by the World Bank for its ease of doing business.

    Disadvantages of Jamaica company registration

    1. We suggest our Clients to register a new subsidiary in Jamaica rather than a branch of their overseas company. Companies pay corporate tax rate of 33.3% while branches of foreign companies are subject to the same amount, plus an additional 33.3% tax on remittances;
    2. Corruption in Jamaica is still an endemic problem. The country has an inefficient legal system and property rights are not adequately enforced;
    3. Getting electricity for a new company in Jamaica is expensive and time consuming. Investors have to wait for 96 days for electricity to be installed;
    4. Jamaica ranks 115th out of 189 jurisdictions in ease of trading across borders. Exporting a single container costs US$1,580 while importing US$2,180, and entrepreneurs should expect to wait approximately 20 days for successful export/import. In comparison to other Latin American and Caribbean countries, this is a high rate and a long wait for investors.
  • Best uses for a Jamaican company

    • Jamaica is a great place to start a tourism business because:
      • Jamaica is strategically located at the gateway of major air and sea routes into the Caribbean and is within easy reach of major global markets with over half a billion of the world’s population living within a four hour flight radius;
      • Jamaica has the largest English-speaking workforce in the Caribbean, easing communication with customers and making more attractive the country to foreign tourists;
      • Jamaica is politically stable, with little risk for foreigners compared to other Central American and Caribbean tourist destinations.

Company registration

  • Time to incorporate: Three weeks
  • Cost to set up: US$9,585
  • Minimum capital: US$1
  • Physical office required: No

Required appointments

  • Shareholders: 1
  • Directors: 1
  • Company secretary: Yes
  • Resident director: No

Key facts

  • Corporate tax rate: 33%
  • Corporate tax base: Worldwide
  • Shelf companies: No
  • Main company type: Limited company

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Contact us

For additional information on our company registration services in Jamaica, please email us at email@healyconsultants.com. Alternatively please contact our in-house country expert, Mr. Saidolim Kodirov, directly:
jamaica-tax jamaica-registrar jamaica financial services commission jamaica-bank