Vanuatu: Offshore Trusts Guide
Legal Framework and Formation Rules and Fees
Trust managers in Vanuatu need to be incorporated as 'local' companies under the Companies Act since International Companies are not permitted to engage in trust management activity, although they can hold the shares of a company that does.
In Vanuatu there is no income or corporation tax, no capital gains tax, no VAT or sales tax, and no withholding tax. However, A stamp duty is assessable on each instrument of settlement at a rate of up to 1% (minimum VT 2,500). It is normal for the initial settlement to be under USD15,000 so the minimum stamp duty applies.
Further transfers, if made without an instrument (i.e., cash), to a Vanuatu trust require no further duty. Additional settlements made by an instrument which does not come under the jurisdiction of Vanuatu are not subject to stamp duty, but such instruments may not be admissible in court if it were needed as evidence, unless it was brought into the jurisdiction and the stamp duty paid at that time.