Why Gibraltar

Why Gibraltar?

Advantages of Gibraltar as a Finance Centre

Gibraltar is situated at the western end of the Mediterranean on the southern tip of Spain, with the coast of Morocco just 14 miles across the Strait of Gibraltar. It has an area of two and a quarter square miles and is connected by a narrow isthmus to the Spanish mainland. It has a population of approximately 30,000, of which 20,000 are Gibraltarian. The people are mainly of Genoese, Maltese and Portuguese descent, and are bilingual in English and Spanish. There is a small but significant Jewish population, a section of Indian traders and latterly a large influx of Moroccan workers. The official language is English and the official currency the pound Sterling, with both UK and Gibraltar coinage in circulation.

It has been a British dependency since 1704, and was ceded by the Kingdom of Spain “in perpetuity” to the British Crown under the terms of the Treaty of Utrecht of 1713. In 1967, and prior to establishing a new Constitution, the people of Gibraltar held a Referendum to determine whether they wished to remain British or come under Spanish sovereignty. The result of the Referendum which was overwhelmingly in favour of remaining British, and the new Constitution of 1969, so incensed the dictatorship of General Franco that the Spanish border with Gibraltar was closed in 1969, and not fully re-opened until February 1985 (as a precursor to Spain joining the European Union in 1986).

Gibraltar joined the European Union in 1973 by virtue of the UK’s accession to the Union under the provisions of Article 227(4) of the Treaty of Rome, which extends the provisions of the Treaty to those “European territories for whose external relations a Member State is responsible.”

At the time of Gibraltar’s accession to the Union, the Government of Gibraltar negotiated exemptions from the common external tariff (Customs Union), the common agricultural policy and value added tax (VAT) under Article 28 of the UK’s Act of Accession. Confirmation of Gibraltar’s exclusion from the Customs Union is carried under Article 3 (1) of the Customs Code (as amended).

On the 23rd June 2016, the British people of Gibraltar voted in the United Kingdom’s Brexit Referendum, and the local votes resulted in a 96% majority voting in favour of retaining membership of the European Union. The Gibraltar vote, however, was simply pooled into the larger UK vote which resulted in a marginal vote in favour of leaving the European Union. On the 31st January 2020, Gibraltar left the European Union alongside the United Kingdom. Much of Gibraltar’s legislation is already well aligned with that of the EU, and the only anticipated divergence will be in respect of UK/Gibraltar protocols from a Brexit perspective.

The 1969 Gibraltar Constitution gives legislative powers to the Governor, who is the Queen’s representative, and the Gibraltar Parliament. In the preamble to the Constitution, the British Government gives an assurance to the people of Gibraltar that the territory will remain part of Her Majesty’s dominions unless or until an Act of Parliament otherwise provides, and that “Her Majesty’s Government will never enter into arrangements under which the people of Gibraltar would pass under the sovereignty of another state against their freely and democratically expressed wishes”.

Although it is, by definition, a dependant territory, Gibraltar enjoys considerable self-government. The British Foreign Office is directly responsible for Gibraltar’s foreign affairs, defence and security matters, whilst the Government of Gibraltar and Gibraltar’s Members of Parliament, who are answerable to the Gibraltar Parliament, deal with domestic matters. Gibraltar has its own legal system, similar to that of the United Kingdom and based on English Common Law but with its own statutes, termed Ordinances, which are passed by the Gibraltar Parliament.

Gibraltar Company Law is derived from the English Companies Act of 1929 and has evolved independently since that date. The latest consolidated version of the Gibraltar Companies Act 2004 has just been published, and still bears the hallmark of English Company Law.

Gibraltar Is not party to any Double Taxation Agreements, but has negotiated a tax agreement with the UK. Similarly, Gibraltar has entered into a tax agreement with Spain that should be noted when looking to conduct guidelines in Gibraltar as a Spanish resident.
Whats New

See if there have been any changes since last year’s Gibraltar Government Budget resulting in any amendments to laws or procedures. Form-A-Co stays on top of these changes and provides regular updates here.

As we progress as a company that is intimate with government legislation and corporate requirements, we will keep you updated as and when things change

Jonathan's Bio


FORM-A-CO (GIBRALTAR) LIMITED was founded in 1989 to conduct the business of Company Formation and administration and all ancillary services. Jonathan’s role from the outset was to serve as the firm’s Manager, creating its product line and devising its services. Since that date, Jonathan has overseen the evolution of the business as the firm’s Managing Director to incorporate Trust and Marine administration into its range of products, and steering it through the various compliance and regulatory challenges arising from the application of Financial Services Regulation in Gibraltar as from 1993, with the establishment of the Financial Services Commission itself.To this day, Jonathan’s role is to oversee the management of the firm’s Company Formation and Trust Administration services (through FORM-A-TRUST (GIBRALTAR) LIMITED), and the incorporation of small businesses in Gibraltar to service the local economy, whilst retaining executive responsibility for all compliance and regulatory led initiatives for the firm. 

  • Over 31 years working in Gibraltar’s Financial Services industry as Managing Director of a firm which is duly licensed by the Financial Services Commission to conduct Company Management and Trust Administration services. 
  • Registered with the Supreme Court to serve as a Commissioner for Oaths in Gibraltar. 
  • Licensed by the Financial Services Commission to provide Directorship services as an approved individual. 
  • Approved by the Financial Services Commission to serve as an EIF (Experienced Investor Fund) Director. 
  • Member of the Gibraltar Advisory Board of TFO Tax Strategies Limited – a Manchester-based business dedicated to wealth management and tax planning structures.
Charle's Bio


Charles joined FORM-A-CO (GIBRALTAR) LIMITED in 2012 after 30 years in the banking sector. He was responsible for the creation and development of Trust businesses at  Lloyds TSB  Bank Plc  and at SG Hambros  Bank & Trust. 

Charles is a Director of FORM-A-CO (GIBRALTAR) LIMITED with particular responsibility for  the  Trust Administration services (through FORM-A-TRUST (GIBRALTAR) LIMITED) as well as client relationships.

Charles brings an array  of skills and experience to the business and holds appointments in listed Companies.