Economy

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The Premium Investor Certificate, issued by the Economic Development Board (EDB) allows companies investing at least Rs 500 million, and companies involved in the manufacture of pharmaceuticals and medical devices, to benefit from bespoke incentives, upon recommendation of a Technical Committee and approval by the Minister. The objectives of the scheme are to promote the emergence of pioneering industries, innovative sectors and first movers. The two clauses below provides …

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South Africans has been reassured around the taxation of foreign investments by the Economic Development Board of Mauritius. This is in response to the confusion and concern that follows an article published on BusinessTech entitled: “Bad news for South Africans with cash stashed in Mauritius“. In the article, it is stated that among other things, the Mauritius Revenue Authority (MRA) is targeting foreign trusts no longer exempt from income …

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The Economist Intelligence Unit (EIU) has published its 13th edition of the Democracy Index for the year 2020 on Thursday 4th February 2021. The abovementioned index evaluates the state of democracy in 167 countries around the world and it tracks their democratic evolution on a specific area of focus. The Democracy Index 2020 is particularly focused on the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic on freedom and democracy around the …

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The Bank of Mauritius (BOM) held its first Monetary Policy Committee (MPC) for 2021.  During the 58th meeting, the economic situation a the micro and macro level have been reviewed. Following the meeting, the MPC has decided to maintain the status quo on the present and the lowest level of the Key Repo Rate (KRR), that is at 1.85%. As a reminder, the MPC meeting was exceptionally held on 16th April …

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In the light of COVID-19 outbreak and significantly impacting domestic growth, the Monetary Policy Committee (MPC) has cut the Key Repo Rate (KRR) by 50 basis points to 2.85 percent per annum.

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The Mauritius Government issued the Income Tax (Amendment No. 2) Regulations 2019 (the Regulations) in LEGAL SUPPLEMENT 805 to the Government Gazette of Mauritius No. 85 of 20 August 2019. The Regulations set forth provisions on the following: a. Substance requirements insofar as it concerns the partial exemption regime (PER) introduced by section 35 (bc)(ii)(V) and (VII) of the Finance (Miscellaneous Provisions) Act 2018 (FMPA 2018) and section 26 …

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Dr Rama Sithanen wrote an interesting article on lexpress.mu regarding Mauritius: not a tax haven but competitive and attractive cross-border investment platform. In the article he says “The debate on the role and contribution of the International Financial Centre (IFC) of Mauritius is spiralling in acrimony unnecessarily. As long as the discussion is evidence-based, facts-driven and issues-embedded, it should be possible to have an informed and a civilised exchange …

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The Economic Development Board (EDB) announced that the Mauritius International Financial Centre (IFC) joined the World Alliance of International Financial Centres (WAIFC) on the 19th of July 2019 in a bid to strengthen the position and visibility of the Mauritius IFC. WAIFC facilitates cooperation between financial centers, exchange of best practices and communication with the general public. The importance of Financial centers are described on the WAIFC website stating …

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A new tax treaty between Mauritius and Kenya was signed after the Kenyan High Court ruled last month that the 2012 tax treaty between the two countries are invalid following a lawsuit. An article by Julie Martin published on MNE Tax on 15 April 2019 provides an oversight about what brought this new tax agreement between the Kenyan and Mauritius governments on. According to the Mauritius Prime Minister, Pravind …

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Custodian Services (digital asset) Rules for 2019 The Financial Services Commission (FSC) published a notice on the website regarding custodian services (digital asset) rules for 2019. The FSC notes that these rules shall apply to any person carrying out custodian services for digital asset. It is also important to note that these rules should be read in conjunction with the relevant Acts and any guidelines which the Commission may …

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Business Report: How A Small Island Nation Became Africa’s Business Champion   The Business Report published its first-ever independently published investment guide.  This report was distributed at Davos for the World Economic Forum’s Annual Meeting.  The report, features Mauritius and is titled “How a small island nation became Africa’s business champion.”   The report looks at Mauritius and its massive success in turning a once poor economy to the most …

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An interesting article posted on lexpress.mu by Par Villen Anganan provides insight to the new trading platform set by the Financial Services Commission (FSC).  The Stock Exchange of Mauritius (SEM) will compete with Indian operator, Afrinex, a subsidiary of the Bombay Stock Exchange.  The new trading platform will be operational in March.  It is said that the two exchanges will complement each other as Afrinex will specialize in listing of …

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Mauritius Tax Regimes NOT HARMFUL according to OECD Peer Review Results on Preferential Regimes   The Financial Services Commission, Mauritius (FSC) released a statement on the 16th of November 2018 regarding the Peer Review Results on Preferential Regimes that the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD) compiled and released.  The latest Peer Review from the OECD, released on the 15th of November 2018 assessed harmful tax practices of Preferential Regimes …

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Doing business in Mauritius is amongst the Top 20 countries in the world according to the Doing Business Report 2019   The World Bank published the Doing Business Report 2019 on the 31st October 2018.  Doing Business 2019 is the 16th in a series of annual reports investigating the regulations that enhance business activity and those that constrain it.  Doing Business presents quantitative indicators on business regulation and the protection of property rights …

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The 2018 edition of the Global Competitiveness Report represents a milestone in the four-decade history of the series, with the introduction of the new Global Competitiveness Index 4.0. The new index sheds light on an emerging set of drivers of productivity and long-term growth in the era of the Fourth Industrial Revolution. It provides a much-needed compass for policy-makers and other stakeholders to help shape economic strategies and monitor progress.   …

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Mauritius removed from the OECD’s list of countries operating potential high-risk Residence/Citizenship by Investment Schemes   The Economic Development Board of Mauritius (EDB) released a statement on the 16th of October 2018 informing the general public and the international investor community that Mauritius has been removed from the initial list of countries published by the OECD.  The OECD initially raised concerns on the potential misuse of the Occupation Permit and …

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The Financial Services Commission (FSC) Mauritius published a Circular Letter on the 12th of October 2018 regarding substance requirements for Global Business Corporations.   The Circular Letter follows consultation with stakeholders to provide clarifications to the new enhanced substance requirements.   A holder of a Global Business Licence (‘GBC”) should carry out its core income generating activities in, or from, Mauritius by employing (directly or indirectly) a reasonable number of …

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The Basel Anti-Money Laundering Index is an independent annual ranking that assesses the risk of money laundering and terrorist financing (ML/TF) around the world.  It focuses on anti-money laundering and countering the financing of terrorism (AML/CFT) frameworks, plus related factors that impact the risk of ML/TF, such as corruption, transparency and the rule of law.  Overview of 129 countries according to their risk of money laundering and terrorist financing.  Interactive ranking revealing …

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New Application Forms for Authorised Companies   The Financial Services Commission of Mauritius (FSC Mauritius) published communication on their website on the 1st of October 2018 regarding new applications forms for authorised companies.   The Finance Act 2018 amended the Financial Services Act (FSA) to introduce S71A – Authorised Company.   Applications for Authorised Companies should be submitted on Application Form A-AC.  A simplified process will be in place for …

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IFCs are loosely defined as locations or cities hosting a collection of financial services providers and facilities with a substantial amount of international activity, in either relative (international vs. domestic) or absolute terms.   The summit showcased 8 exhibits to transform the Mauritius IFC of 2030.  Below is an outline of the exhibits.   IFC Catergorisation The first exhibit looked at IFC worldwide and categorized the major cities in the …

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FSC Maurius released a Guidance Note on the Recognition of Digital Assets as an asset-class for investment by Sophisticated and Expert Investors on 17 September 2018.   The Financial Services Commission, Mauritius (FSC), the integrated regulator for non-banking financial services and global business sectors, is highly supportive of Fintech-related initiatives in the Mauritius International Financial Centre. In light of the developments in Fintech activities, the FSC has been receiving numerous …

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The Ministry of Financial Services and Good Governance introduced its first edition of its monthly newsletter   The launch of this newsletter is a major step for the Ministry to stay in touch with its different stakeholders, get their feedback and share concerns on issues of mutual interest.  The newsletter consists of many interesting articles and inserts.   Interview with Honourable Dharmendar Sesungkur An interview with Honourable Dharmendar Sesungkur, Minister of Financial Services and Good Governance since January …

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All entities providing non-banking financial services in Mauritius must be licensed/ authorised /registered or approved by the Financial Services Commission, Mauritius (the ‘FSC Mauritius’).   The Financial Services Commission, Mauritius (FSC Mauritius) published a public notice on the 10th of September 2018 alerting investors not to invest in entities providing non-banking financial services that is not licensed/authorised/registered or approved by the FSC Mauritius.   In the public notice, the FSC …

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Practice Notes for qualified trustees and management companies when providing corporate trusteeship services   The Financial Services Commission of Mauritius published a document on the 24th of August 2018. This document provides practice notes for qualified trustees and management companies when providing corporate trusteeship services.   The objective of these Practice Notes is to provide for the implementation of a common set of standards for Qualified Trustees and Management Companies …

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Relevant Amendments in line with the Finance (Miscellaneous Provisions) Act 2018   The FSC Mauritius posted the following relevant amendments in line with the Finance (Miscellaneous Provisions) Act 2018 on their website.   The amendments include amendments to the Financial Services Act, Securities Act, Insurance Act and the Captive Insurance Act.   To go to the website to see the original post, please click HERE.   The Financial Services Act   (vi) …

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High level discussions between the Financial Services Commission (FSC) and the Securities and Exchange Board of India (SEBI)   A recent press release from the Financial Services Commission (FSC) confirmed a meeting with the Securities and Exchange Board of India (SEBI) on Wednesday 18th July 2018 in Mumbai.  The meeting was a high level discussion where SEBI gave the assurance that it is neither working on, nor contemplating to produce …

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LCIA and the Government of Mauritius have mutually agreed to terminate the joint venture agreement   The LCIA and the Government of Mauritius have mutually agreed to terminate the joint venture agreement which established the LCIA-MIAC Arbitration Centre in Mauritius, with effect from 27 July 2018. Consequently, from 27 July 2018 the LCIA-MIAC Arbitration Centre will cease operations. From that date (27 July 2018), therefore, parties to contracts should not …

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Mauritius ranked under top 20 in Global Peace Index (GPI) 2018, 1st in Sub-Saharan Africa   Global Results of the 2018 GPI   The twelfth edition of the Global Peace Index (GPI) was recently released.  The GPI ranks 163 independent states and territories according to their level of peacefulness.  This report presents the most comprehensive data-driven analysis to-date on trends in peace, its economic value, and how to develop peaceful …

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Reforms to Global Business Sector announce at the Mauritius National Budget Speech 2018/2019   During the 2018/2019 Mauritius National Budget Speech presented by the Hon. Pravind Kumar Jugnauth Prime Minister, Minister of Home Affairs, External Communications and National Development Unit Minister of Finance and Economic Development, it was announced that there will be changes to the Global Business sector.  Below you can find the key changes.   Key changes relating …

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5AMLD: Council of the European Union accepts new rules   Members of Parliament voted on the Fifth Anti-Money Laundering Directive (5AMLD) on 19 April 2018 following an agreement with the European Parliament in December 2017.  The updated directive entered into force three days after its publication in the Official Journal of the European Union.  Member states have 18 months to transpose the new rules into national law.  On 14 May …

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Launch of the E-Licensing Project in the Republic of Mauritius to improve the business and investment climate   On the 10th of May 2018, the European Union and the Republic of Mauritius released a joint release regarding the launch of the E-Licencing Project in Mauritius.  The Ambassador of the European Union to the Republic of Mauritius, Marjaana Sall and the Hon Prime Minister and Minister of Finance and Economic Development, …

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The Fifth Anti-Money Laundering Directive (5AMLD) was adopted by the European Parliament on the 19th of April 2018, and should be fully implemented into national law by the various Member States from eighteen months to the date in which it is published in the Official Journal.  This is merely a year after the Fourth Anti-Money Laundering Directive (4AMLD) was implemented.  This shows the magnitude of the problem of money laundering. …

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 EU Fifth Anti-Money Laundering Directive now set for statute books   Members of Parliament voted last week on the Fifth Anti-Money Laundering Directive, the vote was passed by 574 to 13 with 60 abstentions following a December agreement reached by the Council.  This means that in future, the true owners of letterbox companies and data about the beneficial owners of firms operating in the EU will be accessible to any …

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OECD addresses the misuse of residence/citizenship by investment schemes   The OECD has recently published important information regarding the steps taken to address the misuse of residence/citienship by investment schemes on their website.  The OECD is determined to continue to work to ensure the integrity of the OECD/G20 Common Reporting Standard (CRS), this is seen in the revelations of the “Daphne Project” on the Maltese residence and citizenship by investment …

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The Bank of Mauritius released the provisional Gross Direct Investment statistics for calendar year 2017.  The figures show that the gross direct investment flows in Mauritius have been estimated at Rs14,288 million for 2017 which is higher than the recorded Rs13,648 million in 2016.  This means that FDI inflows into the Mauritian economy for period January to December 2017 witnessed an increase of  4.4 % as compared to the previous year. …

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Mauritius received a Baa1 rating from Moody’s Investors Service (“Moody’s”)   Moody’s affirmed the Government of Mauritius’s Baa1 long-term issuer and senior unsecured ratings and maintained the stable outlook on the 27th of March 2018 in New York.  According to the report, the affirmation of the Baa1 ratings was supported by two drivers.   The first driver is strong growth and macroeconomic resiliency to shocks, despite its relatively small size.  …

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Minister of Financial Services and Good Governance, Mr. D. Sesungkur promotes Mauritius at International Financial Centre in the Gulf   The Government Information Service announced that Minister of Financial Services and Good Governance, Mr. D. Sesungkur is currently on a financial services promotion mission in the Gulf region.  According to the Government Information Service, the main objective is to increase visibility of the Mauritius International Financial Centre (IFC) in the key …

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Mauritius maintains the first position as a “mostly free”  economy in Sub-Saharan Africa according to the 2017 Index of Economic Freedom   The 23rd edition of the 2017 Index of Economic Freedom was released by The Heritage Foundation.   The key findings of the 2017 Index were firstly, per capita incomes are much higher in countries that are more economically free.  Secondly, greater economic freedom is also strongly correlated to …

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How did Mauritius manage to succeed in economic reformation?   The reformation of countries has been very important in the growth and existence of many countries through the ages.  A recent article in the Daily Maverick by Greg Mills focus to answer the very important question of why do countries reform?  This is a very insightful article.   Greg Mills starts off by referring to the current reformation in South …

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Circular Letter from FSC Mauritius regarding Clearance Certificates for Tax Holidays   The Financial Services Commission (FSC) send a circular letter on the 29th of January 2018 to all licensees regarding clearance certificates for tax holidays.  The circular letter applies to the following licensees: Global Headquarters Administration, Global Treasury Activities, Overseas Family Office (single), Overseas Family Office (multiple), Investment Banking, Global Legal advisory Services and Captive Insurance.   The circular …

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Regulatory Committee on Fintech and Innovation-driven Financial Services to be set up   The Government of Mauritius has made it clear that there is a big drive to develop Fintech in Mauritius.  According to the Government Information Service news published on the Republic of Mauritius website on the 2nd of February 2018, a Fintech and Innovation-driven Financial Services will be set up to assist in paving the way for appropriate …

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LC Abelheim | Economy