Costa Rica has strict corporate laws that protect shareholder anonymity. It is easy to incorporate with the assistance of an attorney, and should cost between $650 and $1,200. Incorporation is recommended for conducting business and land holding, to protect from liability.

Banking
Costa Rica has a strong banking system, with many foreign operators. Accounts can be held in U.S. dollars and/or colónes. Clearing of foreign checks can take weeks, so wires are recommended. Checking, CD, and savings accounts are available. Interest rates for lending are generally higher than in North America.

Real Estate
Foreigners can own land on equal status with Costa Ricans. It is wise to hold land in a corporate name, and prior to purchase, ensure that a reputable attorney conducts a thorough title search. Title insurance is also available.

Lawyers and Taxes
A reputable attorney and advisor is critical. One who speaks English is a necessity if you do not speak Spanish. He or she can help with all the above matters, and can explain how and when to pay taxes.
— VAUGHN J. PERRET and
CHARLES L. LEARY

PUERTO RICO, PRODUCTIVITY STAR


Value added in Puerto Rico’s factories amounts to $10.02 for every dollar of production worker wages, double the mainland U.S. average for manufacturing of $4.64, according to the U.S. Census of Business. Based on rates of growth data over time, a comparison of manufacturing productivity shows the following ranking.

1. Japan
2. Puerto Rico
3. United Kingdom
4. United States
5. Canada


— BOBBY McGILL