Located at the confluence of Africa and Asia, Mauritius has established itself as the regional business hub for Africa. A jurisdiction of substance and repute, many top firms are already leveraging Mauritius to optimize their business. Discover the top 10 reasons of why you should set up your company in Mauritius.
Among the Best Countries in Africa
Mauritius is the leading international financial center in Africa for doing business, economic freedom, competitiveness and transparency. The list below reflects the excellent record of accomplishment of the Mauritian jurisdiction:
- 1st in Africa for ease of doing business
- 1st in Africa for Forbes Survey of Best Countries for Business 2021
- 1st in Africa in the Global Competitiveness Index 2019-2020
- 1st in Mo Ibrahim Index of African Governance 2021
- 1st in Africa in Global Peace Index Institution for Economic Peace 2021
- 1st in Africa for Index of Economic Freedom 2021
- 1st in Africa in the Economist Intelligence Unit Democracy Index 2020
Political, Economic and Social Stability
Comparatively to other countries in Africa, Mauritius is a country with economic and political stability. The country is a free country with democratic values, norms, stability and strong rule of law that assure secure investment for investors worldwide. The political and economic stability allow companies to flourish in Mauritius showing strong resilience even during hard times.
Mauritius has a hybrid legal system (Common law and French civil code) and has a conducive business environment for ease of doing business assisted by the Business Facilitation (Miscellaneous Provisions) Act 2019, the Companies Act 2001, the Business Registration Act 2002 and the Financial Services Act 2007.
Highly Qualified Workforce
Mauritius has a highly qualified taskforce consisting of bilingual (English & French) professionals available for hire at a competitive price. The country’s literacy rate is one of the highest in Africa at 91%. There are many young graduates and even experienced workers looking to work for offshore firms and this might be the perfect opportunity to hire them.
Mauritius is an education hub for Africa as demand for quality education has increased in the region. Indeed, more than 40 different institutions, including well-respected ones, provide undergraduate and postgraduate programs across a number of fields such as law, management, accounting and finance, hospitality and tourism, science, aviation, IT, and journalism, amongst others.
Moreover, the country has introduced the Young Professional Occupation Permit for international students who wish to work and gain experience in Mauritius.
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Mauritius has a liberal economic trade policy and privileged regulations with many countries. As a member of the World Trade Organization and a signatory of the Global Agreement on Tariffs and Trade, Mauritius is a reputed business and investment hub in Africa, especially for international trade.
Strategically located at the crossroads of maritime trajectories and its proximity to countries with influential markets, the country is the perfect go-to for international trade giving access to international markets of billions of potential customers. Mauritius has bilateral and regional trade agreements such as:
- With Africa as a member of the COMESA, SADC, Indian Ocean Commission (IOC), IOR-ARC, African Continental Free Trade Area (AfCFTA)
- With the European Union (EU) under the EU-East Africa Interim Economic Partnership Agreement
- Mauritius-China Free Trade Agreement
- With the US through the United States-African Growth and Opportunity (AGOA)
- Member of the Generalized System of Preferences (GSP)
- Double Tax Avoidance Agreements (DTAAs) with over 43 countries in Europe, Asia and Africa
- Network of Investment Promotion Protection Agreements (IPPAs) with over 20 countries
- Duty-Free Access on the UK market under the Economic Partnership Agreement
- Agreement for preferential market access with India (Comprehensive Economic Cooperation and Partnership Agreement
A Harmonized Fiscal System
Over 20,000 offshore companies are set up in Mauritius. Over the years, the favorable business environment and fiscal measures put in place by the government allowed to attract both foreign investment and foreign talent. The Mauritian tax regime includes:
- No inheritance tax
- 100% Foreign ownership
- Corporate and personal tax rate of 15%.
- Some types of foreign income incurred by corporates can enjoy 80% exemption centerd on specific criteria, which enable them to benefit from a corporate tax of 3%;
- No foreign exchange controls
- 15% Value-added tax (refundable)
- Tax-free dividends
- No capital gains tax, no property tax or inheritance tax
- No customs duties or VAT on certain equipment
- Free repatriation of profits, capital and dividends
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Wide Range of Business Structures
As an International Financial Centre of repute and substance, the country provides efficient structuring solutions to help you maximize the value of your company. The choice of the corporate structure of a company depends on the types of activities that the investor/businessperson wants to carry. No minimum capital is necessary to establish a company in Mauritius. The types of company structure that can be incorporated in Mauritius are:
- Global Business Company
- Global Headquarters
- Authorised Company
- Protected Cell Company (PCC)
- The Private Trust Company
- Trading Company
- Freeport Company
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Cost and Lead Time for Setting Up Your Company in Mauritius
While the cost to establish your company in Mauritius is affordable and competitive, the effective cost also depends on the type of company structure that you would like to incorporate. The different costs include incorporation costs, operational costs, directorships, and government charges.
A tailor made proposal for each structure can be prepared and proposed by a local business consultancy such as Sunibel Corporate Services, which can help you establish your business and assist in the administration of your corporate structure, help you with relocation process and permits and counsel you to optimize your business on a tailored basis..
On average, it will take between 3 to 5 working days to set up your company in Mauritius but it depends on the type of corporate structure as some companies take more days to be established.
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Work and Live in Mauritius With Your family
Mauritius provides a safe living environment and an affordable standard of living. With modern and quality health care services, breath-taking sea activities, warm climate all-year round, the nightlife and shopping malls, it is no wonder that Mauritius is one of the preferred territories to work and live for over 30,000 expatriates.
Mauritius also provides the opportunity to self-employed, investors, and High-Net-Worth Individuals (HNWI), to establish their residency in the island by applying for the Occupation Permit (OP), and relocate to Mauritius with their family. The country also provide for foreigners who are looking to retire in Mauritius.
Real Estate Investment
Real Estate Investment is lucrative in Mauritius, and it comes with an added benefit, the one of securing a permanent residency through the acquisition of a property exceeding USD 375,000. Those properties are regulated under the Property Development Scheme (PDS), and comprise of condominiums, villas and luxury apartments.
As owner of a property in Mauritius, an expatriate or foreigner can set up their fiscal residence and rent their property as long as they remain the owner of the property. The presence of DTA’s, which Mauritius has with other countries prevent the buyer(s) of a particular property from being taxed in the Mauritian jurisdiction and their country of origin.
Sector-specific Opportunities in Which You Can Invest
There are also many business niches in other sectors in Mauritius where setting up a business can be worth considering, such as the:
- Financial Services including Fintech, Insurance, Investment Funds, etc.
- Film Industry
- Ocean Industry
- Life Sciences, Research & Development
- Environment & Renewable Energy
- Information & Communication
- Knowledge Industry
- Logistics & Distribution
- Manufacturing Sector
- Real Estate
- Stock Exchange
- Agro-Industry: Mauritius imports 75% of its food supply as over 20% of the land in the jurisdiction for the agro-industry is under sugarcane cultivation.