The Principality of Liechtenstein lies in the region of the Upper Rhine between the Swiss Canton of St. Gall and the Austrian Federal State of Vorariber. The topography is mainly mountainous, other than the Rhine plain, which is the most populated area.

Type of Company for International Trade and Investment

  • Aktiengesellschaft – AG (Company Limited by Shares)
  • Gesellschaft mit beshr?¬§nkter Haftung – GmbH (Private Limited Company without Shares)
  • Anstalt (Establishment, commercial and non-commercial without shares)
  • Stiftung (Foundation)
  • Treuunternehmen (Registered Trust)
  • Treuhandschaft (Trust)

One of the main attractions of Liechtenstein is its extremely flexible company law, which allows for the creation of any type of legal organization, which is recognized under the law of any jurisdiction in the world. There are three main types of commercial entities in use (1)the Establishment or Anstalt, (2) the family foundation and (3) the company limited by shares. The most important entity for tax purposes is the Anstalt, which is commonly used by foreign companies as a holding company for overseas subsidiaries. The Anstalt is an entity, which has no members, participants or shareholders, and is a hybrid between a company limited by shares and a foundation. It is popular because, with minor exceptions, it is free to conduct all kinds of business, including non-trading activities such as holding passive investments.

Procedure to Incorporate

The procedure for the establishment of Liechtenstein entities follows Civil Law practice. The procedure requires the submission to the Offentlichkeitsregister (Public Registry) of the following information:

  • The Deed constituting the statutes and by-laws signed by the subscriber or agent. The proposed name of the company. Share capital, division of capital and type of shares (where appropriate).
  • A declaration that the minimum capital has been paid in to a Bank in either Liechtenstein or Switzerland.
  • Names, addresses and nationalities of directors and confirmation that they consent to act as directors.
  • Names, addresses and nationalities of shareholders.
  • Confirmation that a Liechtenstein resident representative has been appointed.

Authorized and Issued Share Capital

The minimum authorized issued and paid up share capital for:

  • An Aktiengesellschaft is 50,000 CHF
  • An Anstalt is 30,000 CHF
  • A Stiftung is 30,000 CHF
  • A Trust Enterprise is 30,000 CHF

Taxation

An Aktiengesellschaft pays a 4% coupon tax on dividends and an annual capital tax of 0.1% on the net asset value of the company.

Note: The article above may not contain current information

See also…

International Law