Barbados Offshore Bank Account

barbados offshore bank account

The information below provides details on the Barbados banking system, and details on opening a Barbados offshore account. You will find details on the laws and regulations that govern the banking system, as well as a list of local and international banks that operate in Barbados.

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The Barbados Banking System

Barbados’ financial sector consists of the Central Bank, commercial, merchant, and offshore banks, international business companies and various non-bank financial institutions including trust companies, deposit taking companies, insurance companies and financing companies. Credit unions and co-operatives are also an important part of Barbados’ financial system.

Barbados has had a Central Bank since 1973. The main role of the Central Bank is to act as banker, fiscal agent and financial advisor to the Government and to monitor and regulate the activities of commercial banks and other financial institutions. It also has a duty to promote monetary stability and exchange policies conducive to the growth of the economy.

The Central Bank is responsible for the licensing, regulation, and inspection of commercial banks, offshore banks, merchant banks, trust companies and finance companies (collectively “supervised entities”). These entities must provide the Central Bank with quarterly reports. Overseas directors of offshore banks meet with the Central Bank on a yearly basis.

The Central Bank has fifteen staff employed in its Bank Supervision Department and places a degree of reliance on auditors to verify proper policies and procedures. The Central Bank issued “Anti-Money Laundering Guidelines For Licensed Financial Institutions” (the “Guidelines”) in March 1995. The Guidelines: apply to domestic financial institutions, as well as to offshore banks, trust companies and merchant banks; and, are enforced through moral suasion. There are no specific penalties for cases of non-compliance.

Under the authority of the Money Laundering (Prevention and Control) Act (1998), the government established the Anti-Money Laundering Authority and its operating arm, the Financial Intelligence Unit in 2000. The Bank Supervision Department issued in 2001 revised Anti-Money Laundering Guidelines for Licensed Financial Institutions. The Barbados domestic financial sector consists of 6 domestic banks, 2 merchant banks, 38 credit unions and one money remitter. The offshore sector includes 4,635 international business companies, 413 exempt insurance companies and 53 offshore banks (November 2004 figures). Starting in 2001, the government required Barbados’s institutions and legal entities to reveal the identity of beneficiaries receiving dividends or interest, with the possible penalty for American companies of not getting the benefits of the U.S.-Barbados tax treaty and being subject to the full U.S. withholding tax at a rate of 30-31 percent.

Assets of commercial banks totaled USD 3.5 billion in October 2004, and remained relatively consistent throughout the year. The reserve requirement for commercial banks is 16 percent of deposit liabilities and the minimum deposit rate is 2.5 percent. The weighted average interest rate was 2.53 percent on deposits and 9.7 percent on loans in October 2004, and has remained within half a percentage point of each of those levels since 2002.

Financial Institutions Operating

Commercial banks licensed to operate in Barbados:

  • Scotia Bank
  • Barbados National Bank Inc.
  • Butterfield Bank (Barbados) Limited
  • First Caribbean International Bank (B’dos) Ltd
  • RBC Royal Bank of Canada
  • RBTT Bank (Barbados) Limited

Offshore banks licensed in Barbados:

  • Bancafé International Bank, Ltd.
  • Bank of Nova Scotia
  • Bank of Montreal (Barbados) Ltd.
  • Barbados International Bank & Trust Co.
  • Barrick International Bank Corp.
  • Bayshore Bank and Trust (Barbados)
  • BOC Global Bank Ltd
  • Canaccord International Ltd.
  • Caribbean Investment Bank
  • CIBC Bank and Trust Company (Cayman) Limited
  • CIBC Offshore Banking Services Corporation
  • Cidel Bank & Trust Inc.
  • Concorde Bank Ltd.
  • Continental Bank Corp.
  • CXE International Bank Ltd.
  • Dancap Bank (Barbados) Inc.
  • DGM Bank & Trust Inc.
  • Excelsior International Bank & Trust Corporation
  • FirstCaribbean International Bank (Offshore) Limited
  • First Cumberland Bank Inc.
  • Five Continents Bank Corporation
  • Glenhuron Bank Limited
  • Insight International Bank Corp.
  • Intercontinental Investment & Development Bank
  • International Energy Bank
  • KFW Capital Bank Limited
  • Mancal Bank (Barbados) Inc.
  • Mercom Bank Limited
  • Meridian Gold (Barbados) Limited
  • Moriche Bank Limited
  • National Bank of Canada (Global) Limited
  • NTC Bank (Barbados) Limited
  • Oceanic Bank and Trust (Barbados) Limited
  • Olympus United Bank and Trust SCC.
  • Oxbridge Bank & Trust Ltd
  • Pan Atlantic Bank & Trust Limited
  • PDG Bank Limited
  • RBTT Trust Corporation
  • Royal Bank of Canada (Barbados) Limited
  • Royal Bank of Canada (Caribbean) Corporation
  • RBC Dominion Securities (Caribbean) Limited
  • Republic Bank of Trinidad & Tobago (Barbados) Limited
  • SGS International Private Bank SCC
  • The Coutts Halsall International Bank Inc.
  • The Mid-Atlantic Bank Limited
  • The Victoria Bank (Barbados) Incorporated
  • Toronto Dominion International Inc.
  • TransAlta International Finance Limited
  • Transcom Bank (Barbados) Limited
  • Trilon International Inc.
  • Union Bank (Barbados) Ltd.
  • Universal Compression Finance Company Limited
  • Whitten Bank and Trust Company Limited

Contact Us to learn more about Barbados offshore banking or offshore account opening in another country.