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Country Reports

United States Virgin Islands Country Report

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Risk Level

Low
Moderate
Elevated
High
Very High
Severe
Extreme

Overview

Executive Summary

The US Virgin Islands (USVI) is a low-risk jurisdiction, given the island's status as a United States territory. Laws and regulations are relatively straightforward. While GDP had been expected to grow 1.8% in 2017 as a result of investments expected in the tourism sector; the effects of Hurricane Irma have derailed growth projections. The island's status as part of the US means that the threat of terrorism cannot be fully disregarded, though the threat remains relatively moderate. The island’s geographical position and status make it a drug shipment point into the US market raising violent and especially murder risk. Electioneering in the mainland US continues to dominate the USVI's political scene.

Last update: March 27, 2018

Operational Outlook

Wage costs remain lower than on the mainland, with tax incentives available to companies looking to set up operations. The islands' transport and communications networks are generally sound, however, Hurricane Irma and Maria compromised some infrastructure and led to prolonged power outages. Questions about the efficiency and integrity of the local authorities have been raised as a result of inconsistencies surrounding the islands' finances. A January 2017 media report stated that the islands owe about USD6.5 billion to pensioners and creditors. The territory's small economy is vulnerable to fluctuations in international demand.

Last update: March 27, 2018

Terrorism

According to the Department of Homeland Security, the US Virgin Islands does not face a specific foreign or domestic terrorist threat. As territory of the United States, however, the territory's remote location could make it somewhat of a 'soft' target for opportunism by international terrorist organisations.

Last update: March 27, 2018