Recommended Structure

The structure that can be used for maximum anonymity, privacy and confidentiality, may consist of a Private Interest Foundation holding ownership of an International Business Corporation. The corporation holds all major assets, such as bank accounts, brokerage accounts, real estate, etc., and the foundation acts as a holding company to the corporation.

Like an incorporated company, using such a structure to own bank or investment accounts, of course, offers some important tax benefits as well. However, it is important to note that a Foundation is not an incorporated company and cannot engage in a for profit business the way an incorporated company could. The Foundation could of course act as the 100% owner of an incorporated company, offering investors the opportunity to keep company directorship or stock out of their name.

In addition, some clients consider that the foundation can be the shareholder of an incorporated company, thus allowing for profits to be "distributed" out of the company and into the foundation.

The company incorporated in Panama would be a structure that can be used to carry on a business enterprise. Actually, an incorporated company can be also an important tool in tax planning or asset protection as well, depending upon the goals and needs of the client.

For some clients that may wish to use nominees and feel comfortable with this arrangement, one company incorporated in Panama may be sufficient. Please keep in mind that providing company profits are generated outside of Panama, there is zero corporate tax liability for the company. The only exception to this is interest generated from bank account deposits, which is 100% tax free.

The best decision of the problem is not to maintain any accounts in your name directly and do not have yourself listed as a shareholder or director in the public record. This is accomplished by using the Foundation structure in concern with an incorporated company.

The ways of arrangement

Some clients may prefer to act as the President of the Foundation council and use nominees for incorporated company. Other clients do not wish their name on anything, and may prefer to use nominees for all functions, with a private legal power of attorney given directly to the client.

It is not completely a negative to act as the president of a Foundation, because it is a private non-profit entity. This can be compared to acting as the President of your Condominium Association, local Chamber of Commerce, or a kind of other non-profit association. The term "non-profit' simply means that one cannot directly operate the Foundation in the same capacity as a company. However, the legislation of Panama ways that a Foundation may do anything permissible under law to increase the assets of the Foundation.

Our latest offshore news
30/09/2006
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01/09/2008
The IMF has reported that Panama was one of the fastest growing economies in the world last year.
22/08/2008
Cable & Wireless has announced that its principal operations in the Channel Islands, the Caribbean, Panama, Macau, and Monaco are expected to invest more than USD 400 million in Caribbean telecommunications development.
05/07/2008
The IMF concluded the 7th Annual Regional Conference on Central America, Panama and Dominican Republic and examined how globalization and economic integration is impacting Central America's tax structures.
14/03/2008
The President of Mexico Felipe Calderon has initiated talks with Panama regarding a free trade agreement that has been awaited for a long time.
29/02/2008
Panama's long-term sovereign credit rating has been raised by Standard and Poor's to BB+ from BB. This new rating is based on strong economic growth of Panama and continued improvement in fiscal health of its government.
19/11/2007
Recently, a new law was passed by Panama's National Assembly to give multinational companies that perform certain tasks a significant tax break. As a result, according to a company specialising in investment property in Panama, the country's real estate sector is expected to experience an unprecedented boost.
19/09/2007
The WTO has announced completing a Trade Policy Review of Panama and published the results of the review. The report suggested that the rationalization of assistance programmes and the simplification of the trade regime would help Panama to sustain the economic growth.
22/08/2007
Economic growth in Panama is expected to exceed last year's 8.1% because of a strong investment climate, a dynamic services sector and the Panama Canal expansion programme.
03/07/2007
The Trade Promotion Agreement has been signed by Panama and the United States to eliminate tariffs and other barriers to the trade in goods and services between Panama and the US.
21/03/2007
The Panama Canal Authority (ACP) held a public hearing in Balboa, Panama, with the participation of fourteen representatives from shipping and government.
11/01/2007
Panama banks Banco General and Banco Continental have come to the agreement to merge. This merger will create one of the largest financial services companies in the region. The merger is expected to close during 2007.
07/11/2006
Panama hopes to become Argentina's replacement on the UN Security Council after Latin American and Caribbean Group (GRULAC) of the UN Security Council delayed as far as some English-speaking Caribbean members were reportedly upset about not being adequately involved in this process.
08/09/2006
At a meeting of Panama's President and Executive President of the Central American Bank for Economic Integration (CABEI) agreed that by the end of 2006 Panama will become an 'extra-regional' partner of CABEI. This status will provide Panama with the access of funding of about USD 60 million.
28/06/2006
Chile and Panama signed the free trade agreement that opens up 92.5% of the Chilean economy to Panamanian producers. Now most Panamanian products will enjoy a zero tariff when entering Chile's market.