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Gibraltar - an attractive proposition for the hedge fund industry

Date: Tuesday, January 4, 2011
Author: Easier.com

1 January 2011 was a key milestone in Gibraltar’s fiscal history. On this date the new Income Tax Act came into effect and completed the territory’s 14 year transition from ‘tax haven’ to mainstream European financial services centre fully integrated into the EU. A key part of the Act reduces company tax from 22% to 10% and international businesses are taking note, not least the hedge funds.

Gibraltar is an extremely attractive proposition for the hedge fund industry – an industry that is increasingly disgruntled with London’s high tax rates and changing policies. The Rock is fully compliant with EU financial services regulation, money laundering and co-operation rules. EU, European Economic Area and Swiss nationals are free to work and reside in Gibraltar without a permit and personal tax is capped at a low level. Meanwhile ‘passporting’ of financial services has been in place since July 2003 allowing firms and certain funds to offer their services and products throughout Europe on the basis of their Gibraltar licence.

Gibraltar’s appeal to hedge funds, and indeed a myriad of enterprises, doesn’t stop there. The Rock has political and economic stability (5% GDP growth for year-end March 2010), good professional services and communications, an English common law legal system and its geographic location brings an advantageous time zone and proximity to investors and partners for face-to-face meetings. Personal lifestyle is also of a high quality with the award-winning marina resort of Ocean Village in particular attracting many high net worth individuals to its sumptuous residential towers complete with Health Club, swimming pools, bars, restaurants, premier yacht berths and Gibraltar’s only casino on the doorstep.

Gibraltar is certainly a very attractive and viable option – particularly for start-up hedge fund companies. So much so that two major British funds, between them handling investments of at least $1 billion, have recently made the decision to relocate to the Rock. And they won’t be the last. Publication Hedge Funds Review said “The proliferation of hedge funds and the expected continued growth of this sector of financial services could help give Gibraltar a much-needed boost in its efforts to become a mainstream EU hedge fund domicile.” Whilst Gibraltar's Financial Services Commissioner Marcus Killick said “Gibraltar consistently punches above its weight in the finance industry. This is especially true in the funds industry that has shown tremendous growth over the last few years.”

Elite businesspeople of course require elite accommodation and in a very rare opportunity, a handful of high floor two and three bedroom apartments in Ocean Village’s Grand and Majestic Ocean Plazas have been released back to the market for sale. Priced to sell from just £295,000, many are fully furnished with incredible views of Gibraltar and across to Africa. The accommodation combines high spec fixtures and fittings with abundant on-site facilities from Jacuzzis to an oasis of seven swimming pools and a state-of-the-art Health Club to secure underground parking. On top, residents are able to savour all the action within Ocean Village’s confines such as the Gala Casino, fine dining in a wide range of restaurants and the ultimate in status symbols – a berth for the megayacht.

For further information on both property and berths, visit oceanvillage.gi

Ocean Village Wins in the 2010 European Residential Property Awards in association with Bloomberg Television: 
Best High Rise Development EUROPE 
Best High Rise Development Gibraltar – Five Star
Best Marina Development Gibraltar – Highly Commended