A round table meeting devoted to the protection of rights of Russian Federation residents in foreign jurisdictions was held in KFU.
The keynote speaker was Mark J. Forte, Head of Litigation and Restructuring in the British Virgin Islands (BVI) office of Conyers Dill & Pearman. He specializes in complex cross-border litigation and contentious cross-border insolvency, and is recognised for his emergency interim relief work and considerable insolvency experience. Mark also advises foreign states, government agencies and liquidators on international asset tracing measures.
The BVI is arguably the most recognized offshore tax haven in the world, for Russian entrepreneurs, in particular. With more than 650`000 incorporations (nearly 40% of all offshore companies around the globe) they have reached the top of popularity among global offshore company formations.
The key factors attracting business owners to the BVI are the low registration cost and legal entity upkeep cost, lack of necessity to be a country permanent resident, formal requirements to minimum amount of charter capital and an opportunity to rapidly register a company (within one day).
Another business-friendly reason has recently been confidentiality – there is no beneficiary register in the BVI and the information on the company owner is only available to a certain group of persons. However, the government of the BVI has recently started considering the establishment of an open company owners register. The BVI Financial Services Commission has published a government consultation document on the beneficiary information on its web-site.
This offshore jurisdiction is also popular with many Russian companies. Mark J. Forte lecture focused on their activities. TNK-BP, VK.com, BTA Bank, Norilsk Nickel have registered offices on the British Virgin Islands and have even been involved into juridical proceedings there when Mark J. Forte represented them.
The students of the KFU Faculty of Law were actively involved into the round table discussion. “Events like this have a major impact on entry-level lawyers. Mark Forte is a well-known attorney and we can get first-hand knowledge from him on how large Russian enterprises are managed. Business is getting international and companies need top level experts”, said Ramis Abyanov, the meeting participant.