In November of 2012, the St Vincent and the Grenadines FSA (Financial Services Authority) was established to control the island‘s financial industry, as demand for registrations and company incorporations was increasing drastically. As always, not far behind followed a good number of companies looking into becoming a St Vincent and the Grenadines forex broker.
It’s important to take into consideration, that although the name FSA in most jurisdictions actually means supervision, regulation, fines, reporting, audits etc, in St Vincent and the Grenadines, forex activity still remains unsupervised and for all intends and purposes, unregulated.
By registering a company as a St Vincent and the Grenadines forex broker, by no means does it imply regulation and the FSA itself warns everyone to be cautious of forex trading websites and forex brokers that claim to be “regulated” under their authority.
Firstly, to answer the most frequently asked questions we receive:
- Local office and employees are not a requirement
- There is no capital requirement since there is no regulation
- Important – you cannot open a bank account as a forex brokerage (more about this below)
So how does someone become a St Vincent and the Grenadines forex broker?
Straight forward process of collecting/submitting documents and incorporating a company. Once everything is done, the broker can proceed with bank arrangements (extremely hard if not impossible), systems and overall operations setup.
The documents required for incorporation are:
- Notarised copy of Passport
- Notarised government Utility Bill (water, electricity – no older than 3 months)
- Bank reference letters for Shareholder(s) and Directors
- CV of Shareholder(s) and Director(s)
- Company documents
- Clean criminal records
Important note: The documents must be in the English language – if they can’t be provided in their original form in English, a notarized English translation must be sent as well.
Information on the corporate structure of a St Vincent and the Grenadines forex broker
At least one shareholder and at least one director are required. The company can be up and running with a wide range of types of shares including registered or bearer shares, voting shares, non-voting shares, shares which may have less than 1 vote per share, common shares, preferred shares, limited shares, shares limited by guarantee or redeemable shares, and shares which entitle participation only in certain assets. The company must maintain a registered office and a secretary and there is excellent privacy control with regards to publicising the names of the shareholders and directors. The company can manage the business from anywhere in the world, no annual external audit requirements and this is basically it.
Most cases we come across that look into becoming a St Vincent and the Grenadines forex broker, are Institutional businesses/networks that operate through a forex IB or White Label program, as a pre-step before moving forward into more complex and expensive alternatives. Remember though that to start your own brokerage, requires more than an incorporated company or regulation, like banking, psp’s and solid sales/marketing plans.
Why register as a St Vincent and the Grenadines forex broker?
Some key characteristics of a St Vincent and the Grenadines forex broker include but are not limited to the very low costs and fast set up compared to most regulated jurisdictions, no limits on share capital (a company can start with $1), exemptions from corporate taxes, income taxes, capital gains, no annual reports, no limitations with physical offices and employees.
Although all of the above are such great conditions for the forex brokerage, it can mean doomsday and hellish conditions for traders that fall victims to a few, not so straight forward unregulated entities.
That being said, we want to make sure that we balance the scales a little bit. Most review websites that pretend to be a forex trader’s best friend warn caution, run disclaimer campaigns, raise massive red flags about trading with forex brokers registered in offshore jurisdictions. In most cases, only because of the jurisdiction, a broker is instantly labelled as scam.
We need to be careful because there are quite a few brokers that don’t run chop shops but instead use these offshore registrations to reach milestones that will enable them to get licenses in more reputable jurisdictions in the near future. Many of today’s top brokers started the same way. Unregulated, in a sunny tropical location, with no office or employees, but a solid plan that led to growth, offices and licenses in more reputable jurisdictions.
Just because an investor has the funds to pay the crazy costs of a reputable jurisdiction, by no means does it imply that he/she does not run a chop shop. No regulation can prevent misbehaviour in its entirety and if you are a serious industry player, you know that’s true. Yes, the regulated “big” brokers get fines, warnings, extra hassle in reporting, massive costs and guidelines to work with but does this stop them from running clandestine dealing rooms and iffy risk management? Anyone who thinks this is the case is up for small, big, explosive hiccups in their forex trading experience.
To summarise this, some of these offshore companies are so small, that you don’t even speak with a sales person. You go direct through the owner or director and the relationships you can establish with them, are far more serious/important than dealing with an employee of a heavily regulated company.
All we’re saying is traders must do their due diligence while being extremely cautious, as not everyone is into forex activities to grow a proper business. Knowing who you’re dealing with is a must before depositing funds. That being said – you never know, these “offshore” invisible brokers might actually surprise you.
Time frames to get registered:
For all intends and purposes, with the submission of all documents you can be up and running in less than a month. Cautious reminder though – don’t register a company for forex activities before you look into your banking possibilities. If you already did though and you’re stuck, contact us now to examine what to do next.
How allFX-Consult can step into this picture:
allFX-Consult is a boutique forex consulting agency, catering to quality rather than quantity. For over a decade, our Directors have been connecting with some of the best individuals/professionals, service providers and brokers the industry has to offer so that we can meet any forex corporate challenge.
Because of this, allFX-Consult always has a counterpart/partner for any corporate structure. Before we make any recommendations, we thoroughly examine all possibilities. We’re chosen for being discreet, detail oriented and deadline driven.
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