The Principality of Liechtenstein is situated between Switzerland and Austria in the central part of Europe. With population of only 40 thousand people the country's history is very rich and diverse. State was established on the ruins of the Roman Empire and for a long time tended to the Austrian side. But the beginning of 20th century was decisive in the history of the Principality, it entered into a union with Switzerland, started to use the Swiss franc as a currency, and since then, Switzerland represents Liechtenstein's diplomatic interests in the international arena. The name comes from the Principality reigning family surnames.
Despite its small size and limited resources, Liechtenstein holds leading positions in the world by the number of registered businesses per capita. This is largely due to the low level of income tax, simple registration requirements and a very liberal economy. Principality receives a large income from the fund and the holding activities. But in recent years the Liechtenstein government is working to fight against money laundering through such business entities. Part of the national income comes from an unusual industries, such as a sausage casing, dental implant production, in these areas Liechtenstein is a world leader.
The most common business entities
Liechtenstein offers several different types of enterprise registration options, but the most popular is a joint-stock corporation (AG). This type of business is convenient for the international establishment and the establishment of holding companies.
Liechtenstein operates on the basis of German- Roman law, with the Austrian and Swiss influences. Civil and criminal codes are based on Austrian legislation, and corporate legislation on Swiss law.
Registered capital is expressed in Swiss francs, US dollars or Euros, it must be at least 50 thousand in any of these currencies, and must be fully paid.
There are options to release bearer and registered shares.
The main requirements for the directors and shareholders
The company must have at least one director, but at least one of the directors must be an EU citizen residing in the territory of Liechtenstein, lawyer, trust manager or auditor with authorization to work in this country. Shareholders elect a board of directors for three, then for six years. Joint-stock company must have at least one shareholder and the two founders. There are no special requirements to the shareholders. Information about shareholders is available to the registration agent, and about the directors - is stored in free access register.
Disclosure of the company’s beneficial to the government bodies
Information on beneficiaries is available to the registration company and disclosed only in accordance with specific procedures.
Since 2011 a profit tax for legal entities is 12.5% or 1,200 francs. All companies must submit tax returns no later than on July 1st after the reporting period.
All the joint stock companies are obliged to keep accounting records, but the filing requirements are different, and is dependent on the size of the company.