Forex Licensing - Belize

About Belize

Belize places considerable importance on Forex licencing and regulation. The International Financial Services Commission (IFSC), the regulatory organisation in charge of regulating and overseeing financial service providers in Belize, has a solid reputation for rigorous regulation of the country’s financial industry, including the Forex market.

The IFSC has built a comprehensive regulatory framework in the financial services sector with the goal of promoting transparency, stability, and investor protection. It mandates Forex brokers and other financial service providers to adhere to stringent capitalization, risk management, reporting, and disclosure rules.

Belize is a land of mountains, swamps, and tropical jungle located south of the Yucatán Peninsula. It is bounded to the north by Mexico, to the west and south by Guatemala, and to the east by the Caribbean Sea. The country has a coastline of 174 miles (280 km).

According to Worldometer’s elaboration of the most recent United Nations data, Belize’s current population is 418,001 as of Monday, May 1, 2023.

The official language of Belize is English, but the majority of the population also speaks a creole patois, and many Belizeans are multilingual. The Maya of Belize speak Yucatec, Mopán, and Kekch.

The International Financial Services Commission Act, which was passed in 1999, largely governs Forex licencing in Belize. The International Financial Services Commission (IFSC) is established as the regulatory authority responsible for regulating and supervising financial service providers in Belize, including those supplying Forex trading services, under this legislation.

The IFSC Act requires any individual or firm that seeks to provide financial services, including Forex trading, to get a licence from the IFSC. The IFSC is in charge of examining licence applications and ensuring that licensees follow all applicable laws, regulations, and standards.

The IFSC has also issued a number of rules and regulations governing Forex trading and other financial activities. These are some examples:

  • International Financial Services Commission (Licensing) Regulations
  • International Financial Services Commission (Securities) Regulations
  • International Financial Services Commission (Trust and Trustee) Regulations
  • International Financial Services Commission (Code of Conduct for International Financial Services Providers) Regulations

These rules and regulations outline the conditions that Forex brokers and other financial service providers must meet in order to receive and maintain a licence, as well as the standards of behaviour that they must follow.

The International Financial Services Commission (IFSC), the regulatory body in charge of regulating and supervising financial service providers in Belize, has been in operation since 1999 and has earned a solid reputation for its strict oversight of the country’s financial industry, including the Forex market.

The IFSC has consistently revised its regulatory framework throughout the years to keep up with changing market conditions and evolving dangers. It has also tried to build international collaborations and partnerships in order to improve regulatory efficacy and assure compliance with global standards and best practises.

Furthermore, the Belizean government recognises the importance of the Forex industry in driving economic growth and development, and has been working to attract more Forex companies by offering tax breaks, simplified licencing procedures, and other incentives.

Gov. Capital Req. Timing Tax Rate
$500,000 4 months 0 %

Obtaining a Forex licence in the Belize has various advantages, including:

1. Well-governed jurisdiction

Belize is well-known for its stringent regulatory structure, which promotes openness, stability, and investor protection in the financial services sector, including the Forex market.

2. Environment that is conducive to business 

Belize provides a business-friendly environment that promotes the formation and operation of financial services firms, including Forex brokers. To entice foreign investment, the government provides tax breaks, simplified licencing procedures, and other benefits.

3. Cost-effective

In comparison to other jurisdictions, the cost of obtaining a Forex licence in Belize is relatively low. As a result, it is an appealing alternative for small and medium-sized Forex brokers seeking to establish a presence in a well-regulated country.

4. Gaining access to international markets

Belize’s strategic location in Central America, as well as its membership in international organisations like CARICOM and the Commonwealth of Nations, give Forex brokers access to a diverse range of worldwide markets.

5. Flexibility

Belize’s regulatory structure is intended to be adaptable, allowing Forex brokers to provide a diverse range of products and services to clients worldwide.

5. Reputation

Belize has a reputation for being a well-regulated and respected location for financial service providers, which can help to boost a Forex broker’s credibility and reputation in the eyes of clients.

License: Currency Exchange License
Timeframe for Approval: 3 to 4 months
Regulator: The International Financial Services Commission (IFSC)
Authorised Activities: Forex, Tourism, Agriculture, Offshore Financial Services, Energy, Construction, Manufacturing, Real Estate, Education, and Health Services
Corporate Structure: The BTB, by design, plays an important role in Belize's tourism industry, directed by Belizean laws.
Corporate Tax Rate: 0% on Offshore Profits
Currency: Belize dollar ($ or BZ$)
Capital Requirement: USD 500,000
Paid-up Capital: Minimum: USD 1.00
Economic Support: Fiscal Incentives,
Investment Protection,
Access to Finance
Business Support,
Infrastructure Development
Local Director/s: At least one director (natural or legal person) and there are no requirements for residency
Local Shareholder/s: At least one shareholder, who can be an individual or another legal entity
Local Registered Officer: Required
Local Staff: Required
Compliance Officer: Required
AML/KYC: Required
Audit: Required
Main Benefits: Low operating costs
A favorable tax regime
A strong regulatory framework
Flexibility in ownership and control
Access to international markets.

The following actions will be taken in order to receive a licence:

  • Gathering and preparing all documentation, including due diligence materials.
  • Registration of a Belize business with a paid-up capital of $50,000. This necessitates a specific corporation with more than 100,000 shares. Because this is not a standard IBC, higher government fees apply.
  • Anti-money laundering processes and a custom-tailored business plan are being developed.
  • Submission of due diligence paperwork and other associated documentation to the IFSC to begin the application procedure.
  • Opening an account with a local bank to satisfy paid-up capital requirements. All bank forms, company documentation, and due diligence documents must be prepared and submitted.
  • Ad hoc assistance and the submission of minor papers as needed during the process.
  • Assistance in depositing funds into a local bank account in order to meet the IFSC’s capital requirement.
  • Submission of a letter from the local bank to the IFSC confirming that the capital requirements have been met.
  • Receipt of the licence from the IFSC and distribution of documentation to the Client.
  • Assistance in setting a corporate account for the Company’s future operating needs.
  • Finalising the establishment of a bank account and delivering paperwork to the client.
1. Banking on a global scale

Belize has a favourable regulatory environment for foreign banks, and the country is home to several established multinational banks. You could provide international banking services, such as deposit taking, lending, and foreign exchange services, as a financial services company.

2. Management of investments

Investment management services in Belize include managing investment portfolios for individuals or institutions, giving investment advice, and marketing investment products such as mutual funds.

3. Fiduciary and trust services

Belize has a thriving trust and fiduciary industry, with a wide range of professional service providers giving clients trust and fiduciary services. As a financial services provider, you could provide these services to clients, such as trust formation and administration, trustee services, and acting as a fiduciary for clients.

4. Insurance for captives

The regulatory environment in Belize is favourable for captive insurance firms, which are insurance companies formed to provide insurance coverage to a specific group of associated enterprises. As a financial services provider, you could provide captive insurance services to clients, such as establishing and managing captive insurance businesses.

5. Processing of payments

Belize provides chances for payment processing services such as electronic payment processing for retailers, payment gateway services, and e-wallet solutions.

The following are the basic requirements for acquiring a Belize forex broker licence:

  • The establishment of a domestic corporation in Belize. This entails forming a business, appointing directors and shareholders, paying all costs, and so on.
  • Directors and stockholders who have no criminal history and are in good standing.
  • A charter capital of $500,000 is required.
  • Payment of a $25,000 annual charge.
  • A physical location.
  • A director who is represented by a Belizean.
  • Annual reports and other responsibilities.
  • A company plan is presented.

Other documents required are as follows:

  • Company charter, articles of incorporation, shareholder and director information, and due diligence. This will include identification, bank statements, proof of residency, and a current CV.
  • Police officers obtain credentials from native countries.
  • Bank account provider professional reference letters
  • A lawyer or accountant can provide a professional reference.
  • A comprehensive business strategy that includes information about the target audience.
  • A filled-out application form.
  • All documents must be filled out correctly, signed, and notarized by a Belize notary. Documents that are not in English should be translated and validated locally. Apostilles may also be required for government-issued documents.
Mobilization Fee 33% $5-15,000
Filing of Application with Belize IFSC 33% $5-15,000
Obtain Forex License 33% $5-15,000
Total Professional Fee: 100% $1-45,000

Package includes:

  • Organise an international business firm.
  • Shareholder and officer agreements are prepared and drafted.
  • Prepare and write a narrative business strategy.
  • Current financial statement preparation and drafting.
  • Financial predictions for three years must be prepared and written.
  • Personal financial statements for owners are prepared and drafted.
  • Application preparation and submission to the appropriate regulatory authority.
  • Responses to regulatory authorities are prepared and written.
  • Identification and hiring of an auditor and a forex prime broker.
  • Make it easier to open bank accounts and payment processors.
  • AML/KYC policies and procedures are prepared and drafted.
  • Client agreements and disclosures are prepared and drafted.

1. Establish international business corporation.
2. Preparation and drafting of shareholder and officer agreements.
3. Preparation and drafting of narrative business plan.
4. Preparation and drafting of current financial statements.
5. Preparation and drafting of 3 years financial projections.
6. Preparation and drafting of personal financial statements for owners.

7. Preparation and submission of application with appropriate regulatory authority
8. Preparation and drafting of responses to regulatory authority
9. Identification and engagement of auditor and forex prime broker.
10. Facilitate opening of bank accounts and payment processors.
11. Preparation and drafting of AML/KYC policies and procedures.
12. Preparation and drafting of client agreements and disclosures.