Business Barbados

Investors proposing to live or vacation in Barbados must comply in all respects with the Immigration laws of Barbados.

A wide range of excellent housing is available, including villas, executive mansions, townhouses, condominiums and apartments of all classes.

There are no restrictions on ownership of real estate in Barbados but an investor must register his foreign currency introduced into Barbados with the Central Bank of Barbados if he wishes to repatriate it later.

It is quite easy for an investor to rent housing after arrival in Barbados. There are many real estate agents and agencies who can help in this regard.

A company in Barbados can include a housing allowance in its expenses for tax purposes. A housing allowance granted to an individual is a taxable benefit for income tax purposes. There are no tax allowances for relocation expenses.

(Provided by Clarke Gittens Farmer)

Importing Personal Possessions

Personal items may be shipped to Barbados. Household effects and personal possessions must be shown to have been in the importer’s possession for at least one year. The onus is on the importer to prove this, either through the general appearance of the items or the presentation of proofs of purchase. If he is successful, no import duties are usually assessed on household effects and personal possessions. Motor cars, boats etc. are not considered personal possessions and are subject to the payment of duty.

The importer must visit the Customs Office at the Bridgetown Port and make arrangements to have a Customs Officer present when any container of goods is opened. Alternatively, the importer may use the services of a Customs Broker, which services are readily available and efficient.

(Provided by Clarke Gittens Farmer)

Utilities

Upon renting a property, utility services may not be included in the rental agreement. Here is what to do if you need to apply for your own services:

Telecommunications (Landline, Internet, Mobile and Cable-TV Services)

Fixed line service is readily available with a range of packages, products and services to choose from. Broadband services need a fixed line. When applying for this service on a pre-existing line you should have written permission from the account holder. There are two main service providers in Barbados: Digicel and Flow. Both providers offer competitive rates for all of their services, individually and bundled.

Multichoice TV, an alternate Cable-TV Service is also offered by a statutory corporation, Caribbean Broadcasting Corporation (CBC) which is located in The Pine, St. Michael. If the property being occupied already has this service installed and you select to utilize this service, the account will simply need to be transferred into the proper name. If the property does not have this service, you will need to apply for a new service.

Electricity

The Barbados Light & Power Co. Ltd. (BL&P) is the sole provider of electricity in Barbados. In order to transfer an existing service, the new customer will need to apply at the BL&P office or send in a letter explaining the need for the service to be connected in their name once they become the occupant of the premises. Proper identification, the service charge of BB$17.63 ($15.00 plus $2.63 VAT), information that will identify the service that is required (such as account number, name of last tenant, meter number) and possibly a security payment. Security Payments are required for all persons who are not permanent residents of Barbados and all non-residential services.

Two working days-notice is usually required for the transfer or reconnection of a service.

Correspondence should be mailed to:

The Barbados Light & Power Co. Ltd
P.O. Box 142
Garrison Hill
St. Michael
Barbados, W.I.

Visit their website for more information: http://www.blpc.com.bb

Water

The Barbados Water Authority (BWA), a statutory corporation, is the sole provider of water service on the island. When moving into a new house, unless otherwise stipulated in your lease agreement, you will be responsible for the water bill of the property. As in the case of the electricity bill, the account will need to be transferred to the proper name. The BWA is located at Pine Commercial Estate, The Pine, St. Michael, Barbados.