Mauritius Budget 2018-2019 Highlights

News Alert: Mauritius Budget 2018-2019

14 June 2018

The Minister of Finance delivered his budget speech today, 14 June 2018 and announced a number of measures that will be of interest to those using Mauritius as a jurisdiction to conduct international business. We are pleased to share with you our News Alert which covers key measures contained in the Mauritius budget 2018 – 2019.

The key measures are as follows:

  • The Financial Services Commission  will create new licensable activities, namely Custodian of Digital Assets and Digital Asset Marketplace. This will provide a regulated environment for the safe-custody of digital assets by investors and enable digital assets exchange. The regulator will also put in place guidelines on investment in crypto-currency as a digital asset.
  • Two pioneer citizenship schemes to attract high net worth individuals: (1) the first scheme will offer foreigners the opportunity to obtain Mauritian citizenship provided they make a non-refundable contribution of USD 1 million to a Mauritius Sovereign Fund. For spouse or dependents, they will have to make an additional contribution of USD 100,000 per member of family; (2) the second scheme will offer foreigners the opportunity to obtain Mauritian passport provided they make a non-refundable contribution of USD 1 million to a Mauritius Sovereign Fund. For spouse or dependents, they will have to make an additional contribution of USD 50,000 per member of family.
  • Introduction of harmonised fiscal regime for global business companies and domestic entities

Partial exemption regime

A new partial exemption regime will be introduced. Whereby 80% of specified income will be exempted from income tax. The exemption will be granted to all companies in Mauritius, except banks, and shall apply to the following income source: (1) dividends and profits attributable to a foreign permanent establishment; (2) interests and royalties, and (3) income from provision of specified financial services.

  • Deemed Foreign Tax Credit

This regime available to companies holding a Category 1 Global Business Licence will be abolished as from 31 December 2018. Companies licensed by the Financial Services Commission (FSC), claiming the partial exemption, will have to satisfy pre-defined substantial activities requirement of the FSC. The existing credit system for relief of double taxation will continue to apply where partial exemption is not available. The current regime will continue to apply until 30 June 2021 for companies, which have been issued a licence prior to 16 October 2017.

  • No new Category 2 Global Business Licences (GBL2) will be issued as from January 2019.
  • The Companies Act, the Limited Partnership Act and other related legislation will be amended to allow for disclosure and availability of Beneficial Ownership Information following enquiries related to money laundering and terrorist financing.

Mauritius snapshot

  • Population: 1.3 million, comprising of highly skilled local workforce
  • Land area: 2,040 km2
  • Currency: Mauritius rupee
  • Languages: English and French (third languages Hindi, Arabic and Mandarin widely spread)
  • Time zone: GMT +4
  • Education/ Health: international standard
  • GDP (PPP): USD 25.9 billion; USD 20,422 per capita
  • Preferential access to key markets: Common Market for Eastern and Southern Africa (COMESA), Sothern African Development Community (SADC), Interim Economic Partnership Agreement (IEPA) with European Union, African Growth and Opportunity Act (AGOA) with United States of America
  • 1st in Africa, 25th worldwide – World Bank Ease of Doing Business 2018
  • OECD White Listed Jurisdiction – not considered to a tax haven by OECD

Please do not hesitate to contact us if you have any question regarding Mauritius Budget 2018-2019. You can do so via our contact form.