Area: 181 sq. km
States dollar (USD)
Fiscal year: 1 October
- 30 September
21/10/1986 (from US Admin. UN Trustee)
REPUBLIC OF THE MARSHALL ISLANDS ("RMI") is
a nation of more than 50,000 living on 29 coral atolls
and 5 small low-lying islands in the central Pacific,
mid-way between Hawaii and Australia. The RMI adopted
its constitution in 1979, and signed the Compact of
Free Association with the United States in 1986. The
Marshall Islands became a member of the United Nations
in 1991. The natural beauty and rich culture of the
Marshall Islands attracts tourists from around the world.
Pristine coral reefs teeming with marine life make the
Marshalls a premiere dive destination. Most Marshallese
are Protestants, and as a whole they are very religious.
While the largest church in the nation is the United
Church of Christ, there are many other Protestant denominations
represented, like Assembly of God, Baptist, Seventh
Day Adventists. The Catholic Church also has established
a strong presence in the islands.
Marshall Islands' legal system is based on adapted Trust
Territory laws, acts of the legislature, municipal,
common, and customary laws. As stated in the Compact
of Free Association, national defense is primarily the
responsibility of the United States. Executive power
rests with the president and the cabinet. The president
is both head of state and head of government, elected
by parliament for a four-year term. The president appoints
the cabinet from members of the Nitijela (parliament).
The currency used in the Islands is United States dollar
Under Marshall Islands law, there is no requirement
that the names of corporate officers, directors or shareholders
be filed in any public registry. Such information, therefore,
NO annual return is required to be filed. Bearer share
is allowed, but most clients use nominee shareholder
Non-resident domestic corporations are "statutorily"
exempt from Marshall Islands taxes.
The country is a beneficiary of various trade agreements
which allow preferential access to major markets for
its exports. The Compact of Free Association gives access
to US markets as does the Generalised System of Preferences
(GSP) which covers markets in Canada, Japan and non-western
European countries. The South Pacific Regional Trade
and Economic Cooperation Agreement (SPARTECA) provides
access to the markets of Australia and New Zealand.
Currently, the Marshall Islands is not a party to any
international agreements/codes regarding foreign investment,
although there are plans to become party to some. As
note above, the Marshall Islands is party to various
preferential trade agreements with a number of countries.
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