Buying and storing gold offshore

There are, of course, many positive benefits, but any successful investment needs careful planning. Furthermore, investing in precious metals means purchasing a physical commodity. So let’s summarise the process involved when you buy gold and take a look at what every wise investor needs to consider:

1. Think about the amount you want to invest.
2. Choose the most suitable offshore location to store your gold.
Think about:
a. jurisdiction,
b. accessibility – you need to ensure you have reliable access to your gold.
c. personal circumstances – is there an offshore place you often visit for business, or on vacation?
d. location security – are there risks such as civil riots, invasions?
e. convenient opportunities to buy and sell gold

3. Choose your storage option – safe deposit box or segregated storage?
4. Find a broker trading in high-quality investment gold – we recommend our partner Echtgeld Ltd.
5. Select your preferred offshore storage facility – many investors opt to store gold in our off-bank, broker independent high-security vaults in the Zurich and Gotthard areas of Switzerland.
6. Buy your gold and have it delivered to your vault.

If you are thinking about investing in gold, you will need to store your purchased holding somewhere which is guaranteed to be safe and reliable. For a significant number of investors, that means Switzerland is their optimum choice. Some make the decision following a personal recommendation, while others who research the available options soon discover why Switzerland has gained such a formidable reputation for the premium facilities it can offer. So for anyone looking to purchase and then store gold offshore, this page explains how it can be done.

1. Think about the amount you want to invest

Investment is always governed by matters of personal choice. We therefore feel this is a decision which must always be left to the individual. So for that reason, it would be inappropriate for us to offer any recommendations.

2. Choose the most suitable offshore location to store your gold

While there are a number of countries with good facilities for storing wealth, few possess the comprehensive range of advantages Switzerland can offer. In terms of political stability, the Swiss political landscape is rooted in the kind of direct democracy which automatically limits and deters extremist political parties. Its leaders are thus highly motivated to strive to achieve their aims through consensus politics rather than adopting a radical, confrontational stance.

The people decide on constitutional amendments, and a people’s referendum can be freely called upon by citizens to oppose unpopular new laws. So the Swiss electorate possess the power to deliver their own verdict and could never be persuaded to agree a gold ban, or accept any government confiscation of gold. And as a politically independent democracy, Switzerland is entirely free to formulate its own laws. So in practical terms, investors will find that the storage of precious metals is not subject to any kind of international regulation, nor does it involve any form of intrusive, bureaucratic disclosure.

Federal Palace of Switzerland as symbol for swiss democracy
The Swiss direct democracy protects the right of gold ownership.
© eyetronic -

Being an independent sovereign nation, Switzerland naturally remains in control of its own currency. That means Swiss governments can operate their own independent monetary policy free from exposure to additional currency risks when, for example, borrowing on the money markets. And domestic banking confidentiality is still of paramount importance to every account holder. Switzerland’s national debt is running at CHF 105 billion in 2020 – an amount dwarfed by a statistical net worth of CHF 1,800 billion. In addition, the country’s debt brake legislation has always proved a forthright and effective regulatory instrument when it comes to limiting the size of the national debt.

Switzerland is also home to the world’s largest gold refineries, in fact, Switzerland’s highly liquid gold trade is probably part of the reason the country is regarded as a major international finance centre. Alongside this financial strength, Switzerland also has its own strong, well-equipped army which is perfectly capable of protecting the country’s assets in the event of an emergency.

Another important feature is that Switzerland is ideally located at the heart of Europe with excellent transport links. So those who travel regularly, or have European business interests and other close ties, may find the country is especially convenient for gold storage because it suits their personal circumstances.

3. Choose your storage option – safe deposit box or segregated storage?

Your choice of gold storage options will depend to some extent on factors such as your personal situation and how much gold you wish to purchase. Safe deposit boxes are always a flexible choice and available in different sizes for an annual rental and possible additional insurance. Clients have sole possession of their deposit-box keys. Escorts can be provided by arrangement, and it is also possible to nominate another authorised person and set up a power of attorney provision. However, those who buy and store gold offshore and also seek to take advantage of a duty free storage arrangement should opt for segregated storage.

Bild von verschlossenen Schliessfächern
Storing gold in safe deposit boxes is one possibility.
© diez-artwork -

Secure, ‘allocated & segregated’ storage is an option which is often chosen by business investors because all movements of gold can be conducted via logistics partners without the physical presence of the owner – a considerable advantage for busy people with limited time to travel. And as mentioned above, it is a popular option for the tax-free storage of large volumes of gold on behalf of clients who live outside Switzerland, or perhaps even outside Europe. Gold holdings can be inspected and retrieved at any time, and once again, it is possible to make proxy management arrangements.

4. Find a broker to buy gold offshore

You will need to seek out a trustworthy broker with lots of experience to handle gold transactions on your behalf. At Swiss Gold Safe, we recommend Echtgeld Ltd to all our non-US clients. This brokerage can offer sound advice about the best products to buy, and then afterwards organise the transport of your gold to your preferred storage provider. All precious metals purchased via Echtgeld Ltd are of guaranteed origin – in other words LBMA-certified refineries. Echtgeld Ltd can supply amounts of gold, silver and platinum from 1 gram to 30 kg (1000 oz)., all of which are produced by Argor-Heraeus one of the world’s leading refineries.

Two bullions of 250 gram
Buying and storing gold in Switzerland is very easy.
© vladk213 -

In Switzerland, you can buy gold worth up to 15’000 CHF without any documentation. For amounts above that limit, purchasers will be asked to complete anti-money-laundering documentation. These regulations compare very favourably with elsewhere in Europe. In Germany, for example, the limit is set much lower at just €2,000.

We can also recommend trusted brokers who can operate on behalf of our US clients. Please contact Swiss Gold Safe AG for details.

Free consultation or questions? Contact us

5. Select your preferred offshore storage facility

Gold is a valuable and thus highly sought after commodity. So as an investor, your first priority will be to choose a location which offers robust physical protection, plus the option to insure your assets against the risk of loss by various means. In addition, some clients may wish to store their gold in the most tax-efficient way possible to safeguard their wealth against any unnecessary erosion of its value.

Another important consideration is finding an off-bank storage solution. This arrangement will ensure that, should a crisis occur, you can still get immediate access to your belongings. Do remember that bank storage facilities will invariably be subject to national, and international, financial regulations which may not always operate in your favour in an emergency situation. In other words, you could suddenly be denied access to your gold. Using a privately owned, off-bank storage facility is an absolutely legal method of avoiding such a catastrophe.

When choosing a secure vault offering state-of-the-art protection for your gold, it is absolutely vital to select a company with a long-established track record and a clientele which has increased primarily through personal recommendation. In that respect, Swiss Gold Safe Ltd has provided storage facilities for both private and corporate investors for many years. Our valued Swiss and international clients will confirm we provide off-bank, broker independent high-security vaults in the Zurich and Gotthard areas of Switzerland – facilities which are second to none and can meet, if not exceed, every requirement mentioned here.

6. Buy your gold and have it delivered to your vault

In this final step, your gold is purchased, then transported and stored in your chosen vault. If you buy gold via Echtgeld, they will be able to transport it directly to your chosen Swiss Gold Safe vault. Once your gold is safely stored in the vault, Swiss Gold Safe will then issue a warehouse list which will specify your gold holding and identify the precise location of all your stored items.

View over Zurich which is a financial center in Switzerland.
Zurich is a financial center in Switzerland.
© JFL Photography -