Name of country



  • Central America, bordering the Caribbean Sea, between Guatemala and Mexico


  • 405,633 (July 2021 est.)

General Introduction

  • Belize, historically known as British Honduras, is a member of CARICOM and SICA. Located in the northeastern region of Central America, it has borders with Mexico to the north and south, as well as Guatemala to the west. The capital is Belmopan, while Belize City, which is also the country’s primary port, is the most populous city. Although English is the only official language in Central America, the population of just over 380,000 people speaks primarily Spanish and Creole. The Belize Dollar (BZD) is the country’s currency, which is currently tied to the US dollar (2:1).

Wifi Speed

  • From May 2018 to May 2019, broadband internet in Belize averaged a download speed of 6.8 Megabits per second (Mbps), up from 3.93 Mbps registered the previous year. As of March 2019, nearly 40 percent of web traffic in Belize was generated through mobile phones.

Electrical outlet

  • Belize uses 110 volt, 60 cycle electricity, same as the US. Plugs are typically the 2 pronged flat type so US travelers will not typically need a converter or adapter.

Per Capita GDP 

Real GDP per capita

  • $7,005 (2019 est.)
  • $7,118 (2018 est.)
  • $7,109 (2017 est.)

note: data are in 2017 dollars


  • tropical; very hot and humid; rainy season (May to November); dry season (February to May)


  • Permanent Residence and Temporary Residence are the two forms of residency status available in Belize.
  • Permanent Residence is for those who desire to make Belize their home and plan to stay for an extended period of time.
  • Temporary Residence is for people who have made or are planning to make a significant commercial investment in Belize but are unable to meet the regular Permanent Residence requirements due to obligations outside the country.


  • Show evidence of investments in Belize valued at not less than five hundred thousand Belize Dollar – BZ$500,000.00.

Processing Time

  • 1-2 months
  • Once your application is approved, you will receive your QPR card. The whole process takes within 1-2 months.

Key Benefits

Citizenship Benefits

  • Visa-free or Visa on arrival to 95 countries, including United Kingdom, Singapore, Hong Kong Visa-free access to Russia The right to live and work in Belize at all times, and all the rights associated with membership of the Mercosur Access to educational and healthcare benefits Get one of the most valuable passport worldwide.

Permanent Residency Benefits

  • The right to live and work in Belize, without any time limit Be eventually eligible for citizenship.

Temporary Residency Benefits

  • Low cost of living Fast and easy process Be eligible for permanent residency in a short period of time Territorial tax system Warm climate Low cost program English speaking country.


For persons applying for Permanent Residence, you are required to

  • Have been legally residing in Belize for a minimum of 1 year at the time of submitting your application.
  • During this year you have not left the country for more than 14 days in total.
  • You must proof to the Immigration Office that you have been and you will be able to continue being financially stable.
  • You have not been convicted by a competent court in any country of a criminal offence for which yo may have been liable to a sentence of imprisonment of twelve month or more and has not received a free pardon in respect of the offence.

A Temporary Residence status is given for a period of only one (1) year, and becomes renewable at the end of that given period.

For persons applying for Temporary Residence , you are required to

  • Show evidence of investments in Belize valued at not less than five hundred thousand Belize Dollar – BZ$500,000.00.

 Other requirements:

  • Be at least 45 years of age.
  • Proof of income: An official statement from a bank or financial institution certifying that the applicant is the recipient of a pension or annuity of a minimum of US$2,000 per month, or a Financial Statement from a financial institution, bank, credit union, or building society in Belize certifying that the applicant’s investment or deposit will generate the sum of a minimum of US$2000 per month, or the equivalent of US$24,000 per year.
  • No criminal record.
  • Be in good health and do not have any contagious disease.

Natural Resources

  • arable land potential, timber, fish, hydropower

Ethnic Groups

  • Mestizo 52.9%, Creole 25.9%, Maya 11.3%, Garifuna 6.1%, East Indian 3.9%, Mennonite 3.6%, White 1.2%, Asian 1%, other 1.2%, unknown 0.3% (2010 est.)

note: percentages add up to more than 100% because respondents were able to identify more than one ethnic origin


  • English 62.9% (official), Spanish 56.6%, Creole 44.6%, Maya 10.5%, German 3.2%, Garifuna 2.9%, other 1.8%, unknown 0.3%, none 0.2% (cannot speak); note – shares sum to more than 100% because some respondents gave more than one answer on the census (2010 est.)


  • Roman Catholic 40.1%, Protestant 31.5% (includes Pentecostal 8.4%, Seventh Day Adventist 5.4%, Anglican 4.7%, Mennonite 3.7%, Baptist 3.6%, Methodist 2.9%, Nazarene 2.8%), Jehovah’s Witness 1.7%, other 10.5% (includes Baha’i, Buddhist, Hindu, Mormon, Muslim, Rastafarian, Salvation Army), unspecified 0.6%, none 15.5% (2010 est.)

Median Age

  • total: 23.9 years
  • male: 23 years
  • female: 24.8 years (2020 est.)


  • urban population: 46.2% of total population (2021)
  • rate of urbanization: 2.3% annual rate of change (2020-25 est.)

 Physician density

  • 1.12 physicians/1,000 population (2017)

Government type

  • parliamentary democracy (National Assembly) under a constitutional monarchy; a Commonwealth realm

Unemployment Rate

  • 9% (2017 est.)
  • 8% (2016 est.)


Headline Personal Income Tax Rate (highest marginal tax rate) 25%

Headline Corporate Income Tax Rate (excluding dividend taxes)N/A

  • The first $14,500 of a resident’s annual income is exempt from income tax, which is levied at a rate of 25%. The income from a pension is likewise exempt. There is no graduated taxation system like in the United States or many other countries. There is presently no capital gains tax in Belize

To be a tax resident in Belize, you must spend more than half of the year there. On income derived from Belize, both tax residents and non-residents are subject to income tax. Income derived from a foreign source is not taxed.

The personal income tax rate is graduated up to a maximum of 25%. Capital gains are not taxed.

Belize levies a real property tax of 12.5 percent of an occupied property’s yearly rental value, and a 2% tax on a vacant property’s annual rental value. Property taxes cannot be more than 2% of the property’s market value. Unimproved land is subject to a one percent land tax.

The transfer of assets is subject to stamp duty, which varies depending on the asset class. A ten percent stamp duty is levied on real estate purchases.

In Belize, you can form a limited liability company (LLC) or an international corporation, which, in addition to being tax-free if its activity is conducted abroad, offers confidentiality and simple accounting requirements. Visit incorporations.io/belize for more information on Belize corporations.

This is not intended to be tax advice. We have access to a global network of skilled attorneys and accountants who can provide you with the best guidance possible. For more information, please contact us.


The legal framework for economic substance requirements in Belize

Legal Framework

  • Legislation

What legislation sets out the economic substance requirements in your jurisdiction?

The Belize authorities published on 11 October 2019 Act No. 15 of 2019 (the Act), the purpose of which is to improve the provisions on economic substance and the activities that must obey the new requirements.

  • Relevant entities

What types of entity are subject to the economic substance requirements in your jurisdiction?

The substance requirements of the Act do not apply to any entity that does not conduct relevant activities in Belize; subsequently, the substance requirements of the Act do not apply to a commercial entity that is controlled and managed outside of Belize and is tax resident in a jurisdiction other than Belize. However, such an entity must provide the authorities with sufficient proof that it is tax resident in the jurisdiction that it asserts, which is elaborated in Section 5 of the Guidance Notes.

  • Relevant activities

What activities trigger the economic substance requirements in your jurisdiction?

The activities that trigger the economic substance requirements are:

  1. banking;
  2. insurance;
  3. fund management;
  4. financing and leasing business;
  5. headquarters;
  6. distribution and service centre;
  7. shipping; and
  8. holding company, engaged, or where one or more of its subsidiaries is engaged in one of the relevant activities.

Tax residence requirements

Must entities be tax resident (or deemed tax resident) in your jurisdiction to be subject to the economic substance requirements? If yes, what are the tax residence rules and requirements? If not, do the economic substance requirements in your jurisdiction differ with respect to non-resident entities ?

Only entities that are considered included entities, which means a Belize entity carrying out any of the relevant activities, are subject to be tax resident in Belize or need to prove being tax resident abroad in respect to the relevant activity.

If the entity is deemed have substance within the Belize jurisdiction, to conduct core income-generating activities (CIGA) in Belize, the activity must be directed and managed in Belize, and based on the nature and scale of the relevant activity, the entity will need to have:

  1. an adequate number of suitably qualified full-time employees;
  2. an adequate amount of expenditure incurred in Belize; and
  3. an appropriate physical office for the CIGA.


Has the government published guidance on the economic substance requirements?

The Belize jurisdiction published on 3 March 2020 the Guidance Notes CD-CID-No. 1.1 of 2019 Rev, and also issued on 28 July 2020 the Economic Substance Guidance Notes G-CD-No. 10.5 of 2020, in which the forms about the Economic Substance Act were shared with registered agents in Belize.

On 15 February 2021, the Belize authorities made slight changes to Form C and launched the correct Form C. All guidance can be found on the IFSC website.

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