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Expatriate Health Insurance News: Barbados poised to be new expat hotspot

Wealthy individuals looking for a destination to become an expatriate are increasingly moving to the Caribbean island of Barbados.

This is due to new residency rules introduced last year that have seen a surge in interest in property in the country, reports the Telegraph.

Having one of the lowest levels of property tax anywhere in the world makes it a desirable destination for many looking to spend their retirement in the sunshine.

Knight Frank's 2013 Caribbean Insight Report shows there has been a 57 per cent increase in inquiries about property on the island since 2012.

Gloria Eduardo, spokesperson for PricewaterhouseCoopers, told the news provider: "Individuals with assets of US$5 million [£3.2 million] or more can now gain an indefinite special residency permit (ISRP) which is especially tax efficient for foreigners living on the island who earn their money elsewhere."

It allows such residents to claim tax credits on income that has come from abroad and then transferred to Barbados through a bank of up to 93 per cent.

Ms Eduardo went on to explain the further benefits: "This translates to an effective tax rate of 2.45 per cent for an individual whose income is solely from foreign sources.

"Qualified applicants under 60 years of age who wish to run their worldwide business from Barbados also won’t require a work permit, which makes for a less bureaucratic process."

Spouses, dependent minors and children in education will also be granted the same residency status as the applicant.

Evidence must be submitted on a three-yearly basis to show that children are enrolled in a school in Barbados or are being home schooled.

The cost of property on the island is currently the lowest it has been for years, meaning many expats are taking advantage of the relative bargains on offer.

Barbados is an appealing destination not just because of its favourable tax conditions, but also due to its pristine beaches, guaranteed sunshine and the fact that it lies outside of the principle Atlantic hurricane belt.

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