Tag Archives: Free Trade

The emerging virtual currency Bitcoin explained on TED

Currency — the bills and coins you carry in your wallet and in your bank account is founded on marketing, on the belief that banks and governments are trustworthy.

Source: TED

Now, Paul Kemp-Robertson walks us through a new generation of currency, supported by that same marketing … but on behalf of a private brand. From Nike Sweat Points to bottles of Tide (which are finding an unexpected use in illegal markets), meet the non-bank future of currencies.

Tax & Money Havens

Introduction to Bitcoin – the world’s leading virtual currency

Bitcoin presentation by programmer Robert McNally. Gives you an overview of what you need to know about Bitcoin:

 

Bitcoin as an emerging electronic money, digital currency in the international arena has been a large degree of recognition, deep into the daily life. Can be used to buy a cup of coffee, but can also be directly converted into real money. In China, bitcoin is still is a “fashionable”, and Baidu now accept bitcoin payment, and has become the first to support cloud services vendors based on bitcoin, giving us richer payment methods and experiences.

You can learn more about Bitcoin at Tax & Money Havens  here.

Tax & Money Havens

We accept Bitcoin – the world’s leading virtual currency

You can buy any of our services using the virtual currency Bitcoin.

We Accept Bitcoin

We have placed a “Bitcoin” button for easy and fast payment on our site.

You can buy an offshore company, a trust or a foundation, consultancy or subscribe to our offshore intelligence reports using Bitcoin.

Get your own offshore corporation with an international bank account here now and “kick” start your business.

Tax & Money Havens

Shanghai establish Free-Trade Zone

The State Council has approved the establishment of the country’s first pilot free-trade zone (FTZ) in Shanghai, in what is seen as an essential step towards upgrading China’s economy through the liberalization of services and trade, with an eventual roll-out nationwide in other chosen areas.

Shanghai at night

Shanghai has already established the conditions for setting up an FTZ of almost 29 square kilometers, building on its existing comprehensive bonded zones around Waigaoqiao, Yangshan and Pudong Airport, which are reported to have serviced total trade of more than USD100bn in 2012.

 

Picture courtesy of Wikimedia: Shanghai’s financial district Pudong

Home to the country’s main stock exchange and the world’s largest port, Shanghai has been at the heart of China’s transformation from an isolated Maoist regime into an economic powerhouse.

Although final details have yet to be announced, while the removal of unnecessary administration and its legal framework is completed and submitted to the Standing Committee of the National People’s Congress, the FTZ (or, as it has been more aptly called, the “free-market area”) will be more advantageous for financial services, trade and investment.

Shanghai is to strengthen its role as a foreign exchange settlement center for international trade, with measures to promote the cross-border use of the renminbi with lessened foreign exchange conversion regulations. For example, bank accounts in the FTZ would be exempt from regulatory control by the Chinese authorities.

While further tax incentives for companies establishing in the FTZ are still to be disclosed, zero customs duties and import taxes will continue to apply to goods transferring between the FTZ and overseas destinations, and domestic merchandise that enters the FTZ is regarded as having been exported, with exporters enjoying an immediate tax rebate.

In addition, there is already an exemption from tax on business income and revenues arising from international shipping, transporting, warehousing, and shipping insurance for companies registered in the FTZ port areas.

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Hong Kong Again Ranked As World’s Freest Economy

The World’s Freest Economy. Picture of Hong Kong by Jakub Halun

For the 19th consecutive year, Hong Kong maintained its position as the world’s freest economy, according to the 2013 Index of Economic Freedom, published annually by The Heritage Foundation.

Launched in 1995, the Index evaluates countries over 10 economic freedom factors – from property rights to entrepreneurship – grouped into four broad areas of economic freedom: rule of law; regulatory efficiency; limited government; and open markets. Based on its aggregate score, each of the 177 ranked countries was classified either as: “free” (i.e. combined scores of 80 or higher); “mostly free” (70-79.9); “moderately free” (60-69.9); “mostly unfree” (50-59.9); or “repressed” (under 50).

The top four in the index were unchanged. Hong Kong scored 89.3 on the 1-100 scale, which, although 0.6% lower than last year, still topped the 88 of Singapore, which, although 0.5% higher than 2012, ranked second, as it has for all 19 years. Australia and New Zealand ranked third and fourth, at 82.6 and 81.4 respectively, enabling the Asia-Pacific region to account for the four highest-ranked countries.

Switzerland took fifth place in the ranking (and continued to be the only “free” economy in the European region), with Canada finishing sixth, despite slipping a half point, and Chile seventh, moving more than half a point toward greater economic freedom. Mauritius, the only sub-Saharan country to rank among the top 10, was eighth with an overall score of 76.9. Denmark finished ninth, just ahead of the United States, which remains in tenth.

The US, with an economic freedom score of 76, lost ground again in the 2013 Index. Its score was 0.3 points lower than last year, with declines in monetary freedom, business freedom, labor freedom and fiscal freedom.

The world average score of 59.6 was only one-tenth of a point above the 2012 average. Since reaching a global peak in 2008, the Foundation noted that economic freedom has continued to stagnate. The overall trend for last year, however, was positive: Among the 177 countries ranked in the 2013 Index, scores improved for 91 countries and declined for 78.

“On the plus side, average government spending scores improved,” it added. “Unfortunately, this was matched by a decline in regulatory efficiency, as a number of countries hiked minimum wages and tightened control of labor markets.”

Hong Kong’s score was lower than 2012 due to increased government spending relative to gross domestic product and an increase in inflation. Among the 10 economic freedom factors assessed, Hong Kong maintained its top position in trade and financial freedom, remained second in investment freedom and property rights, and rose from third to second in business freedom.

Hong Kong’s Acting Financial Secretary Professor KC Chan welcomed Hong Kong’s highest ranking, noting that The Heritage Foundation complimented Hong Kong’s highly competitive regulatory regime “which, coupled with an efficient and transparent legal framework, sustains vibrant engagement in global trade and investment.”

As Hong Kong’s economic interaction with mainland China has got closer, and trade and financial linkages with the Mainland have grown significantly, The Heritage Foundation further complimented Hong Kong for continuing to demonstrate a high degree of economic resilience and remaining one of the world’s most competitive financial and business centers.

Chan confirmed the government is determined to uphold economic freedom in Hong Kong. “The government will continue to provide a business-friendly environment for firms to flourish, while establishing an appropriate regulatory regime to ensure the integrity and smooth functioning of the free market. We also strive to remove impediments to industries tapping into new markets,” he added.

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