The British Virgin Islands (BVI) are located in the eastern Caribbean Sea and are under the jurisdiction of the United Kingdom. Since the early 1990s, this politically and economically stable British territory with a strong legal framework began to attract the attention of many investors. Today, the BVI is considered one of the largest financial zones, with over 600,000 offshore companies registered here (40% of all offshore companies worldwide).

Compared to other jurisdictions, a simplified option is available for obtaining a Forex license in the BVI.

The role of the main market regulator in the BVI is performed by the Financial Services Commission of the British Virgin Islands (FSC). The functions of the state body include regulation, monitoring, development, and efficiency growth of the entire financial industry.

In 2010 the Regulator, based on the Securities Act, established new rules, and standards for forex brokers and for obtaining a license.

Also, the BVI Financial Services Commission regularly audits companies and may revoke a broker’s license if:

  • financial fraud etc. is detected.
  • documents with false information have been submitted
  • norms and conditions of licensing are violated
  • activity is detrimental to public interests, investors, creditors

Advantages of obtaining a Forex license in the British Virgin Islands

Entry into the international currency market.
Gaining access to the Forex market, the daily trading volume of which amounts to trillions of dollars

Quickly obtaining a license.
A simplified licensing procedure allows you to become a participant in the financial market in three months.

Zero taxes.
Favorable tax conditions result in lower tax liabilities and higher profits.

Strong regulatory framework.
The flexible regulatory framework facilitates the quick adaptation of companies and provides comfortable operating conditions and legal protection.

HR policy.
There are no requirements regarding personnel, no mandatory annual meeting of shareholders, no management of the company

Diversification for doing business.
Possibility to transfer the company to another jurisdiction

Forex broker’s license in the British Virgin Islands allows receiving significant profits to businesses of different sizes and areas of activity

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Requirements for obtaining a license in the British Virgin Islands

Among the important requirements under the provisions of the BVI Securities and Investment Act to obtain a forex license in the British Virgin Islands:

  • Registration of a company with an appropriate corporate structure in the BVI
  • The capital required to start a forex business is $50,000 or more.
  • License fee, which ranges from US$1,200 to US$1,200
  • Compliance of applicants and company employees with conditions such as financial stability, competence
  • Compliance with applicable regulations on the organization of the company and financial services.

Process of obtaining a Forex license in the BVI

The procedure involves fulfillment of regulatory requirements and submission of certain documents. The qualitatively organized process of accepting an application for a forex license in the British Virgin Islands allows you to start working with it within three months.

Although the specifics of this procedure are determined by the peculiarities of a particular business, as well as the chosen type of license, the main stages of the process are as follows:

  • Preparing and submitting the required documents and application to the BVI Financial Services Commission
  • Payment of a fee as determined by the authority
  • Director, staff, and officers to be inspected
  • The BVI Financial Services Commission assesses the forex company for compliance with applicable regulations.

A prerequisite for the procedure is the submission of a quality application and a complete set of documents, including:

  • Application for a license
  • Constituent documents
  • Company’s business plan
  • Financial and insurance documents
  • Confirmation of legal address in the BVI
  • Details of the firm’s owners and staff
  • Internal company documents, such as anti-money laundering and counter-terrorist financing policies
  • Proof of payment of required fees

Forex consultant in the British Virgin Islands


Eugen Fomin

Types of forex licenses in the BVI

There are different categories of licenses for those wishing to do forex business in the BVI. Each of them has its features and advantages. Choosing the right type of license depends on the specific services provided by the company. Fast Offshore Licenses’ legal team advises and assists in deciding on the right license.

Among the different categories of licenses in the British Virgin Islands are the following:

  • Category 1: Investment Trading. Subcategory A: the licensee acts as an agent and works as an intermediary between buyer and seller, facilitating contracts and acting on behalf of the client
  • Category 1: Trading in Investments: Subcategory B: the licensee is a principal and may trade for his or her own money, buying and selling at an independently established value
  • Category 2: Arranging trades in investments: the licensee is authorized to interact with Category 1 licensees by referring their clients, but is not allowed to engage in direct trading activities
  • Category 3: Investment Management License: the holder of this license has a wide range of investment opportunities, including the right to act on behalf of clients when entering into transactions and to advise them on the execution of transactions
  • Category 4: Investment Advice: This license allows companies to operate with a focus on providing advice on investing and forex trading, but does not grant the right to execute transactions.

Establishing a company in the British Virgin Islands

Since 2014, the Commercial Companies Act has been in force in the territory of the Islands. According to this, all businesses (local and international) must be listed in the BVI register.

Also, the BVI, adhering to the norms of the global financial community, adopted the “BOSS Act” in 2017. When registering a company, all information about beneficiaries with 25% of shares is entered into a special register (in case of a change of beneficiaries, the data must be submitted within 15 days).

OECD (and FATF) requirements apply in this economic zone as well, businesses must adhere to KYC.

Steps to incorporate a company in the BVI:

  1. Consultation with a registration agent
  2. Choosing a name (it is better to choose 3 variants, it is forbidden to use the name words that will indicate the connection with the local government).
  3. Collection of necessary documents for managers, and shareholders (passports, documents on the place of residence). Founders and directors can be residents and non-residents.
  4. Preparation of company documents (registration of the office at the local address)
  5. Account opening
  6. Form the authorized capital (the amount is not indicated in the founding documents)
  7. Preparation of a description of the company’s business activities

Since 2019, it is more common to register a BC (Business Company). This form allows the company to operate also outside the BVI.

According to the BVI Act of 2004, the business name must end with Limited, Incorporated, or Corporation (LTD, Inc and Corp).

Peculiarities of company registration in the BVI:

  • online registration is provided for
  • the number of directors must be at least one and one shareholder (can be the same person)
  • the company is created in 48 hours (if all requirements are met)
  • documents must be kept in the BVI
  • it is prohibited to acquire land or real estate by offshore companies

How to apply for a forex license in the BVI

The main steps in the procedure of applying for a forex license with the FSC:

  • fill in the FSC application form
  • pay the fee
  • provide details of the company and its registration
  • submit a business plan outlining business strategies, all measures and procedures for managing market and credit risks, and compliance with legislation
  • describe all technical aspects of the forex business (cybersecurity and data handling measures, choice of trading platform, describe measures for dealing with system failures).

Although the entire application process is structured, it can still take up to 3 months for the FSC to review the documents. The regulator has the right to stop the review process and require the documents to be prepared according to the regulations.

Regulation of forex license in the BVI

The Securities and Investments Act 2010 is the key piece of legislation for the regulation of forex activities. The BVI Financial Services Commission (FSC) oversees the licensed activities

The FSC has clearly defined the legal framework for the establishment of companies (Commercial Companies Act 2004 as amended in 2022); protects the interests of traders and investors (Financial Services Regulations 2008); and adheres to international anti-money laundering arrangements (Regulations 2008). Also in 2013, FSC signed a Memorandum of Understanding with 31 EU countries.

Obtaining a BVI license demonstrates to investors the transparency and compliance of a forex broker in a well-regulated environment.

Taxation for BVI forex companies

The British Virgin Islands is the largest offshore zone. According to the Commercial Companies Act 2004 there is 0% corporate income tax, no VAT, and no sales tax. Only an annual levy is mandatory (failure to pay it may result in the company being struck off the BVI register).
The combination of such factors makes this place very attractive and profitable for capital investment.

FAQ about Forex License in the BVI

What is a BVI license?

It is an official document issued by the British Virgin Islands Financial Services Commission (FSC) that allows you to conduct licensed activities (based on category) in the BVI.

How to obtain a forex broker license in the BVI?

Submit an application and a package of documents from the company, translated into English and notarized, to the FSC.

How much does it cost to obtain a Forex license in the BVI?

The application itself costs 1000 USD, other costs depend on the type of company and its authorized capital.

How long does it take to obtain a BVI Forex license?

The processing time can take up to 4 months if not all the documents are submitted.

How much does a BVI Forex license cost?

The cost depends on the license category, the annual fee for each license category is 1500 USD.

Is trading activity regulated in the British Virgin Islands?

Yes. All international regulations of the IMF, FATF, AML, EU, local laws, and acts regulating licensed activities apply to the territory of the BVI.

Are there any difficulties associated with obtaining a forex license in the British Virgin Islands?

If all legal rules, and procedures for applying for a forex license are followed, the issuance time will be 3 months for both residents and non-residents.

How much is the annual fee for a forex license in the British Virgin Islands?

The annual license fee reaches 1500 USD for each category.

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