The Principality of Liechtenstein
The Principality of Liechtenstein lies at the centre of Europe, nestled between Switzerland and Austria, next to the river Rhine.
The form of government is a constitutional monarchy established on democratic parliamentary principles. The head of state is the reigning Prince von und zu Liechtenstein, Hans-Adam II. Since 15th August 2004 his son, Crown Prince Alois, handles the government business.
A total of some 38’000 inhabitants live in 11 municipalities which cover an area of 160 km2. Approx. 34% of the inhabitants are foreigners. The official language is German.
The Principality of Liechtenstein has been in a customs and currency union with Switzerland since 1924. For this reason the official currency is the Swiss Franc (CHF). Furthermore, the Principality of Liechtenstein has been a member of the Council of Europe since 1978, a member of the UN since 1990 and a member of the European Economic Area (EEA) since 1995.
The most important economic sectors are the industrial and service sectors, which account for more than 94% of gross domestic product. The financial services sector alone accounts for 30% of this.
The financial centre Liechtenstein offers its clients the following key advantages:
- liberal company law
- special tax privileges
- secure economic and political environment at the centre of Europe
- highly qualified education
- free movement of capital and a stable currency
- strong banking system
- ideal infrastructure
- high level of discretion with respect to compliance with international legal standards in the field of preventing money laundering and organised crime