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Andrew Henderson

Founder of Nomad Capitalist and the world’s most sought-after expert on global citizenship.

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Establish a Vanuatu Tax Residence: The Ultimate Guide

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Vanuatu is primarily known for its island paradise appearance and favorable tax code. The national tax code is extremely limited with most wealth and profits are non-taxable. If you’re hoping to go someplace where more of your wealth stays with you, then Vanuatu is a great choice.

Vanuatu is a favorite place for vacationers and those seeking a break from the daily hustle. The natural scenery and beaches make a tranquil place to settle down.

If you’re considering moving to Vanuatu or establishing a tax residency, then let us help. Our team at Nomad Capitalist are experts at helping our clients go where they’re treated best. If you aren’t certain about where is best for you, don’t worry. We’ll help you make the best choice.

Why You Want A Tax Residency in Vanuatu

Before their independence in 1980, Vanuatu was under joint care and administration of the U.K. and France. Today it’s an independent republic with its own form of government and administration.

Vanuatu has one of the most favorable tax codes in the world. Vanuatu does not tax income and has limited taxes on imports, exports, and real estate. Moving wealth to this country is a smart tax choice, but there are a few things to keep in mind before moving your wealth.

There are two types of tax residencies in Vanuatu: old residencies and new residencies. Old residencies are founded on a zero tax, zero tax oversight, and secrecy. Today, with the implementation of the CRS and other international governing bodies, there’s much more oversight and restrictions.

The CRS is a globally agreed common standard that helps ensure international tax fairness and transparency. The days of hiding your money off-shore are essentially over. But that doesn’t mean some countries offer better secrecy than others.

How to Obtain a Tax Residency in Vanuatu

There are several ways to obtain tax residency in Vanuatu without having to move to the country. This is known as a tax residency, which grants the holder the ability to opt to pay taxes in Vanuatu rather than other countries with much higher tax rates.

Though this seems straightforward, you need to be careful about your time spent in other countries and make sure you don’t become a tax resident somewhere else. Vanuatu doesn’t have any income tax – you won’t have any tax returns to demonstrate that you are actually paying taxes there. A tax certificate verifying your tax residency is, nevertheless, available.

This strategy may be suitable for perpetual travelers, but this tax residence loses its appeal if you are living the trifecta lifestyle.

Besides this, Vanuatu’s tax residence is quite weak when it comes to banking. Many jurisdictions consider Vanuatu blacklisted, and you may have difficulties setting up bank accounts.

If you are considering relocating and you are unclear which tax residence would be the best and most tax efficient for you, our team can help you with that.

If you still believe this is the best way for you to go or you are interested in actually spending time in Vanuatu to support your tax residency, this is how you can do it.

You can apply for this tax residency through the following programs:

  • Vanuatu’s Development Support Program (DSP)
  • Permanent residency program (no physical presence required)

Permanent residency requires an investment of $400,000 in real estate or business ventures.

You’ll also need to present police and medical clearance and submit several identifying documents, like your passport and birth certificate.

The DSP is similar to a residency by investment, but is usually used to fast track citizenship.

This program does require at least some time in the country and a rental agreement or property ownership.

While Vanuatu has a lot to offer for tax purposes, it’s not someplace we generally recommend to our clients.There are several Caribbean countries that offer the same or similar tax benefits and an even better residency and citizenship by investment programs. Our team at Nomad Capitalist will help you understand your many options and make the best decision.

How to Obtain a Tax Residency in Vanuatu

Other Ways to Obtain Tax Residency in Vanuatu

You can become a tax resident of Vanuatu by getting a permanent or temporary resident card.

These can be obtained by investing a minimum amount of $100,000 in Vanuata’s real estate sector.

This could entail buying a property in the county, or simply investing in local building projects.

Alternatively, you can also apply for a second passport in Vanuatu through their citizenship by investment program.

How Long Does it Take to Obtain a Tax Residency in Vanuatu?

The process generally takes a couple of months, then, once you have your citizenship or permanent residence approved, you will then get your documentation in a matter of weeks.

Benefits of Vanuatu as a Tax Haven

Personal Income Tax

There is no income tax. However, the Vanuatu Tax Administration Act introduced personal Tax Identification Numbers on the islands.

Even though the tax code is more restrictive than it used to be, it’s still one of the best tax residencies.

Entrepreneurs Are Welcome

Vanuatu has no corporate tax and is a business friendly environment. The low taxation and growing economy make it a great place to start your business and have it grow.

Property Taxation

There is no property tax in Vanuatu. Only residential rental income is taxed.

No VAT for International Companies

The International Companies Act specifies that any activity carried out by an international company for financial gain is exempt from tax.

Capital Gains Tax

There is no capital gains tax to be paid in Vanuatu.

Wealth Tax

Vanuatu does not have a wealth tax or inheritance tax.

Conclusion

Vanuatu is a peaceful island nation with a lot to offer. Not only does it look like the type of island you’d want to go on vacation, it has some amazing tax and investment opportunities.

If you are hoping to go to a place where your taxes are low, then Vanuatu is an ideal place.

If you think Vanuatu is the right place for you, let our team at Nomad Capitalist get you through the process. However, our belief is that you don’t need to settle, but should explore your options and make the right choice.

Nomad Capitalist will handle everything from start to finish and help you make the best decisions with your wealth. We’ll ensure you have the most freedom, financial security, and the ability to travel visa-free to numerous countries.

Vanuatu Tax Residence FAQ

Where Is Vanuatu?

Vanuatu is a cluster of coral and volcanic islands in the south pacific ocean. They’re located approximately 1,118 miles (1,800 kilometers) northeast of Australia. The island chain is composed of 13 large islands and several smaller surrounding islands.

Is Vanuatu a Tax Haven?

Vanuatu is considered a tax haven thanks to its zero income tax rate and low overall taxes. It’s one of the few places where it’s still possible to pay zero to little taxes.

Is There VAT in Vanuatu?

Yes, Vanuatu has VAT on most goods and services in the country. Services and most goods are taxed at a rate of 12.5%. Since Vanuatu imports most items, this tax is a little higher than in some other countries.

Is Vanuatu Citizenship Worth It?

Getting a Vanuatu citizenship is worth it if you have the resources to make the move and invest.
The nation has a lot to offer high net worth individuals who are looking for lower taxes and keeping more of their revenue.
If you are considering making the move or want to know more about saving on taxes, contact us today.

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