Taysun Corporate Services Ltd

About Mauritius

History

Mauritius was named after the Dutch Prince Maurice Van Nassau. Before gaining its independence in 1968, Mauritius was a British colony.  In 1992, Mauritius became a Republic.  Mauritius still forms part of the British Commonwealth and is also a member of the Common Market for Southern and Eastern Africa (COMESA), the Southern African Development Community (SADC).

Mauritius has a surface area of about 2040 km sq. English is the official language, however Creole and French are widely spoken.  Most Mauritians are bilingual and understand and speak both English and French.   The other languages which are also taught and spoken at school are; Hindi, Urdu, and Mandarin.  

Mauritius is 4 hours ahead of Greenwich Mean Time and 3 hours ahead of Central European time.  


Population

Mauritius is a multicultural country with an estimated population of about 1.2 million inhabitants, consisting of people of Indian, Chinese, European and African origin.  The estimated workforce is around 541,000. 


Political Structure

The Republic of Mauritius has implemented a Westminster style democracy.   There are seventy members of Parliament, out of which sixty-two are elected every five years during parliamentary elections.  Eight are chosen according to the best-loser system.  The President is the Head of State and Commander in Chief.  Nevertheless, full executive power rests with the Prime Minister who is Head of Government.  Since acquiring its independence, Mauritius has had three Prime Ministers.  


Legal System

The legal system of Mauritius consists of British common law practices and the French Napoleon Code.  During the French period (1715-1810) the island legal system was governed by the French Napoleonic Code, which has remained in force under the British rule (1810-1968).  Therefore, there have been subsequent amendments in civil and criminal procedural laws as well as in company law.  The Supreme Court of Appeal for Mauritius is the Privy Council in London, as Mauritius is still a member of the Commonwealth.  


Legislation

The main legislation governing companies in Mauritius are:
  • The Companies Act 2001
  • The Financial Services Act 2007 (FSA Act 2007)
  • Financial and Anti-Money Laundering Act 2002
  • The Prevention of Terrorism Act 2002
  • The Prevention of Corruption Act 2002

The implementations of these Acts have laid down the foundations of conduction business in a clear and transparent manner in Mauritius making it an attractive place for foreign investors.  Mauritius has even been ranked 17 out of 183 economies in 2010 Doing Business Survey (Doing Business Index 2010 – World Bank).  This has been possible mainly with the help of the legislation in force in Mauritius


Economy

The Mauritian economy rests on tourism, sugar, textile, financial services, fish processing, information and communication technology and hospitality and property development.  About 15% of the export earnings come from sugarcane.   The gross domestic product (GDP) growth for the year 2010 is estimated to be around 4.5 percent and 5 percent for the year 2011.  

The non bank financial services sector has constantly been expanding since it was setup in 1990s.  Mauritius has attracted more than 32,000 offshore entities many aimed at commerce in India, South Africa and China.   About 80 percent of foreign direct investment (FDI) for India comes from Mauritius.  The corporate tax prevailing in Mauritius is at 15 percent and in addition to that, dividends are tax free.  Furthermore, one of the reasons which investors find Mauritius attractive for conduction business is the convenient time zone which allows same-day transactions possible from US, through Europe and Middle-East up to Australia.  Besides, Mauritius has signed double taxation agreements (DTA) with 35 countries.  

The treaties currently in force are as follows:

List of countries
1. Bangladesh
2. Barbados
3. Belgium
4. Botswana
5. China
6. Croatia
7. Cyprus
8. France
9. Germany
10. India
11. Italy
12. Kuwait
13. Lesotho
14. Luxembourg
15. Madagascar
16. Malaysia
17. Mozambique
18. Namibia
19. Nepal
20. Oman
21. Pakistan
22. Rwanda
23. Senegal
24. Seychelles
25. Singapore
26. South Africa
27. Sri Lanka
28. Swaziland
29. Sweden
30. Thailand
31. Tunisia
32. Uganda
33. United Arab Emirates
34. United Kingdom
35. Zimbabwe