How to Open a Business in Barbados

by Alexander Cequea; Updated September 26, 2017
Barbados Coastline

Opening a business in Barbados can be easy if you have the right information and preparation in place. Barbados has a stable democratic government and has a history of solid economic performance. According to allbusiness.com, the United States has a strong market share in Barbados, with 40 percent of Barbados'; imports coming from America. Starting a business in Barbados is similar to starting one in the United States, with the same business formations such as limited liability companies, limited partnerships and nonprofit companies. There also are specific company types assigned to external business operations, such as the Barbados International Business Company.

Step 1

Determine the type of company you want to register. Depending on your business type, you'll likely register as a corporation or limited liability company. Or, you may apply for a business name registration form. Incorporating a company in Barbados costs approximately $300 to $400 (registering a business name costs only $25). The advantage of a corporation in Barbados is decreased liability for shareholders and the creation of a separate legal entity. Registering a business name allows you to legally operate but doesn't limit your liability. All business liability transfers to the owner or partners of the company.

Step 2

Apply with the Barbados Corporate Affairs and Intellectual Property Office. Go to the government agency's website and click on "Download Forms". Select the appropriate form for the business you want to register. If you're registering a corporation, you need to download the Articles of Incorporation form and the Application for Registration under the Application for Business Names Act section.

Step 3

Decide if you want to open a Barbados International Business Company (IBC) status. This business type is widely used for offshore operations in Barbados. The Barbados minister of finance gives IBC licenses to companies that participate in international manufacturing, trade or commerce. These activities must take place in Barbados, with exports or services going to countries outside the general Caribbean trade area.

Step 4

File and pay taxes. In Barbados, file company tax returns each fiscal year by March 15 of the following year (if the fiscal year ends between January 1 and September 30). If the fiscal year ends between October 1 and December 31, the filing deadline is June 15.

Step 5

Start your operations once you have the appropriate registration. A company's incorporation typically takes five working days or less after your application submission. If you're only registering a business name, you can receive a certificate of registration within two working days.

About the Author

Alexander Cequea has been writing since 2008. He is an activist, speaker and film producer whose work has been featured in "Enlightennext Magazine" and the Environmental News Network. Cequea is currently producing a documentary about sustainability and consciousness. He has a Master of Business Administration in sustainable business from Maharashi University.

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