In a landmark decision by the Government of Belize, it has been resolved that land title transfers involving foreigners no longer require the Central Bank’s approval prior to processing by the Ministry of Natural Resources.
This was a requirement previously instituted by the Administration in hopes of capturing much-needed foreign exchange from these transactions because land title transfers from Belizeans to Foreigners carry a stamp duty of eight percent. Instead, the requirement ended up causing a multitude of backlog within the Ministry of Natural Resources in relation to land title transfers.
Although the Central Bank will no longer be required to approve land title transfer requests, the Government will still require that the Central Bank be notified of these transactions. This will allow the Central Bank to easily identify specific suspect transactions requiring further investigation.
Historically, no request has ever been denied by the Central Bank, hence the redundancy with the requirement. This is sure to be a welcome change for realtors, developers, and foreign investors alike.
UPDATE: The Prime Minister is currently in discussions with the Central Bank of Belize to finalize the need for this requirement. We will be providing updated information as it becomes available to the public.