How to affordably ship your gold and silver overseas

Written by Andrew Henderson

Dateline: Singapore

When it comes to storing gold offshore, a common question is “how do I ship the gold I already own overseas?”

In our Nomad Guide: Offshore Gold, we recommend that those with large gold holdings – into the six figures – ship their gold using a third party service. There’s a little more to it than that, but the idea is that larger gold holdings can always be affordably shipped.

For those with smaller gold holdings, the decision can be much more difficult. Owning silver makes things even more complicated, as its weight makes it expensive to ship, while golds’ value makes it expensive to insure.

In cases where you want to ship a smaller amount of gold or silver to an offshore vault, selling where you live and buying back offshore can sometimes make sense, but if you live in The Land of the Free or another high-tax western country there may be tax consequences.

I’ve personally worked with some of our readers on how to store gold offshore and my suggestion is almost always the same: buy it where you want to store it.

For some of the same reasons that I advise against burying gold in the backyard, owning gold where you want it just makes sense.

Why buy gold in the United States if you are afraid of confiscation in the United States? It’s silly to think that you’ll be the lucky one who gets some anonymous tip and is able to move your gold (To where? I have no idea.) just in time.

That’s why I often recommend Singapore as a great offshore wealth jurisdiction.

However, if you already own gold in the United States or elsewhere, there are several straightforward solutions to shipping it to an offshore vault of your choice. We’ve talked about these before, and I recently came across an affordable option, especially for US persons.

The Scottsdale Mint offers a service whereby you ship your gold to their Arizona offices for authentication and it is in turn shipped to Singapore for storage with their partners at the Singapore Precious Metals Exchange (SGPMX).

Particularly if you have a high volume of metals to transport, Scottsdale Mint can be helpful as they will assist with the logistics end of things, allowing you to benefit from reduced costs.

For instance, shipping one ounce of gold from a residence in the United States to Scottsdale for inspection, and then for Singapore for storage, can cost as little as $6 with delivery costs, insurance, etc.

Once your gold and silver reach Singapore, they are stored in the FreePort, which I have referred to as a vault that would make James Bond blush.

The interesting thing about SGPMX is that they have no western ownership. If you are concerned not only about threats from the US but also from the EU, that could be a potential green flag for you knowing that no one with citizenship in a high-tax western country could be compelled to do anything untoward with your information or your metals.

However, while there are a lot of vault options in Singapore, what makes this opportunity interesting to me is the fact that US persons can take advantage of a two-step process that reduces the cost of shipping gold overseas.

Scottsdale Mint works with family offices and large institutional entities, but they also have experience working with average investors looking to ship their gold.

I’ve recommended several firms in my guides before, but if you want easy customer service with a company based in your country, using Scottsdale Mint as a logistics solution before shipping your gold to Singapore could be helpful.

What is also interesting about the Scottsdale-Singapore relationship is how the Singapore gold exchange works. SGPMX allows peer-to-peer trading within their exchange, ostensibly allowing for lower spreads and easier resale to other dealers within their system.

Scottsdale Mint factors into the equation as a manufacturer by authenticating gold you send them to make sure it is ready for storage – and future trading, if you wish – in Singapore. Then, as a US-based logistics company, they help facilitate shipment offshore at a lower cost for smaller investors.

Jim Rogers was one of the early adopters of this system. He has similarly spoken highly of Singapore (as, of course, he lives there). So has Marc Faber.

There have been concerns raised by some on the internet about SGPMX and its chairman Victor Foo. I’ve had articles sent to me asking “Is this a scam?” on several occasions.

Of course, I always encourage you to do your own due diligence. Ultimately, it is your responsibility to protect your own money and make sure you are investing wisely, but from my research, I have not been able to substantiate most of the claims I have read.

To be honest, I would be highly surprised to have people like Jim Sinclair and Jim Rogers working with an outfit that didn’t have its house in order. From what I can tell, Jim Rogers is not an investor in the organization but has been a customer.

For as sophisticated as the offshore business should be, there are a number of players who act like little more than nine-year-old girls doing hit pieces on each other. Again, do your homework, speak to the parties involved, research your options.

However, if you own gold that is stored in the United States or Europe, you need to do something about it. The western governments’ attitude toward gold and other hard assets is not likely to get better in the coming years.

The war on cash, the war on gold, and the war on wealth are underway and western democracies have little room to turn back now that the genie is out of the bottle.

That means either selling your hard assets and dealing with the potential tax consequences (still advisable in some situations) OR shipping what you have before your government starts snooping into your business even more.

If you’re interested in shipping gold and silver with Scottsdale Mint, you can find information on their asset transfer service here.

Andrew Henderson
Last updated: May 21, 2020 at 4:08PM

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2 Comments

  1. Mick

    Nice article Andrew. However, wouldn’t it be a lot easier to use a service like bitgold for your gold storage/Purchases?

    Reply
    • Christian W.

      Mick – You bring up a good question. I think the answer is more one of diversity. I for one have a bitgold account. I do not use it to store the bulk of my holdings, it’s more of a way for me to trade in and out of physical at a lower cost than actual physical…and God forbid trading paper which can be expensive too (ie. margin requirements). The transfer option Andrew discusses would serve some quite well I imagine. To be able to diversify your physical holdings offshore into a fully segregated vaulting arrangement at a fair price fits the bill in my case. I don’t have to sell it to get it out of the US, and it’s apparently not even exported under my name ?? (will have to look into this further). I have thought for years how my current setup is entirely too risky for me, this transfer would at a minimum gain me affordable insurance on my metal and piece of mind at night. My question for Andrew is what happens if I sell it, I can keep my funds offshore?? Boy that would be nice 🙂 🙂

      Reply

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