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Guernsey is one of a group of islands-the Channel Islands-situated between the UK and France. It is located about 300 kilometers from London, 300 kilometers from Paris and 500 kilometers from Brussels. Although geographically closer to France, Guernsey has stronger ties with the United Kingdom, and English is its recognized language. It is self-governing under a non-party political system and is free to set its own taxes and laws. This independence has had the reassurance, since the 13th Century, of the British Crown's provision of defense and foreign representation.

Guernsey's principal sources of income are the offshore financial services industry, tourism and agriculture. St Peter Port, the capital of Guernsey, is a powerful centre of financial services excellence with a wealth of the world's leading banks, trust companies, life assurance companies, legal and accounting firms being located there.

The financial services business is supervised by the Guernsey Financial Services Commission. The formation of the commission was a requisite in order to gain designated territory statuses by the UK authorities. UK investor protection laws rank as some of the strictest in the world and the UK Department of Trade and Industry will only grant designated territory status where it is satisfied that a legislative framework offers a similarly high degree of investor protection.

An example of this investor protection is the requirement that all life offices should hold at least 90% of their policyholder's assets in the custody of an approved Independent third-party trustee.


Guernsey offers many advantages to the international investor. The island's main attractions are its favorable tax system, security and confidentially. For non-resident investors there is no Guernsey tax on the income and capital gains of the investment funds. So apart from withholding or corporation taxes on the income deriving from some securities (imposed at source), capital will grow entirely tax-free.

Guernsey Trust Law, which is based on English law, is comprehensive and modern. It enshrines the freedoms of Guernsey trusts within a statutory framework which is relatively easy to understand and which seeks to give maximum security, confidentiality and flexibility to all parties involved.

Apart from the absence of tax liabilities and an excellent Trust Law System there are a number of further significant advantages:
  1. Complete political stability;
  2. Constitutional independence from the UK -most importantly fiscal independence;
  3. Low administrative costs;
  4. Excellent communications with other financial centers;
  5. An excellent commercial and legal infrastructure, government and commerce;
  6. A good, informal working relationship between government and commerce;
  7. No exchange controls;
  8. Complete confidentiality for investors who wish to keep their financial affairs private.
  1. The tax free environment ensures that the return on a Guernsey investment will be higher than the return on an equivalent investment held in a conventionally-taxed environment.
  2. The strictly observed requirement that of policyholder's assets be held by an approved, independent trustee, ensures that if a life office were to become insolvent, these assets would have priority status and could never be used to meet the claims of any other creditor.
This is meant only as a brief guide to the protection provided by the regulations. Full details are available on request. Contact Us.
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