Commerce and Business in the USVI
The U.S. Virgin Islands offer tranquility, relaxation and the perfect opportunity for business growth. The U.S. Virgin Islands promotes economic growth, development of human and economic resources and preserving job opportunities for residents. Business owners find unique tax incentives and commerce opportunities for their new or established business.
United States business owners find that conducting business in the U.S. Virgin Islands is very similar to conducting business in the United States. The U.S. Virgin Islands uses the U.S. dollar for currency and the U.S. court system for legal matters. Although the territory has the opportunity to tax income earned within its boundaries, it uses the same tax forms and filing deadlines as the United States.
The U.S. Virgin Islands’ government invests in public-private partnerships by providing capital investments to private companies. The territory created the Economic Development Commission specifically to help business owners take advantage of tax incentives when they relocate their business to the U.S. Virgin Islands. Incentives for business growth include a 90 percent reduction in personal and corporate taxes, and 100 percent exemption on gross receipt tax, business property tax and excise tax payments. Additionally, software developers have the opportunity to access reduced taxes on royalty income for software created in the U.S. Virgin Islands. Reduced taxes increase business profits, which creates the ideal situation for business growth.
Other incentives for relocating businesses to the U.S. Virgin Islands include access to the territory’s educated workforce and excellent telecommunications services, including fiber-optic lines and high-speed internet. St. Croix and St. Thomas Economic Development Parks have retail space available for rent at below-market rates.
Manufacturers also benefit from relocating to the U.S. Virgin Islands. Products manufactured in the U.S. Virgin Islands have “Made in USA” labels. The U.S. Virgin Islands is exempt from the Jones Act, so business owners may ship their products between United States ports, including to Puerto Rico, on foreign-flag bearing vessels. Additionally, manufacturers may import their products quota-free and duty-free into the United States. The territory’s deep water ports and well-developed harbors are ideal for shipping all types of products.
Quality of life is very important in the U.S. Virgin Islands. Residents can explore historical sites, shop duty-free and soak up sunshine on pristine beaches. Residents also have access to regular air service to the United States as well as countries in South America, Europe and other Caribbean Islands. All of these factors combined make the U.S. Virgin Islands an ideal location for commerce.