Seychelles

Seychelles Companies

Synopsis

A lengthy struggle between France and Great Britain for the islands ended in 1814, when they were ceded to the latter. Independence came in 1976. Socialist rule was brought to a close with a new constitution and free elections in 1993. President of France-Albert RENE, who had served since 1977, was re-elected in 2001, but stepped down in 2004. Vice President James MICHEL took over the presidency and in July 2006 was elected to a new five-year term. A relative new player in the offshore company business but has garnered itself a major slice of the market and is now seen as a direct competitor to the British Virgin Islands.

Star Ratings

Corporate registration efficiency

5

Cost

5

Confidentiality

5

Local Banking facilities

4

Legal system

5

Political stability

4

Reputation

4

seychelles

Location

The Seychelles are an archipelago in the Indian Ocean, northeast of Madagascar with South Africa being a major business and communications gateway.

Advantages of a Seychelles International Business Company (IBC)

The Seychelles are now fully independent from the United Kingdom and became a republic in 1976 but still remain members of the 'British' Commonwealth. Today, the relationship with the South Africa, both politically and financially, is probably the most important but the United Kingdom and France are still important especially in matters of defence and tourism. The Seychellois Rupee is the currency of Seychelles

Seychelles corporate law has been based upon similar legislation used in jurisdictions such as the British Virgin Islands. The IBC Act makes it possible for the administration of an IBC to be undertaken either in the Seychelles or from another jurisdiction. However, whilst the legislation affords a high degree of confidentiality from 3rd party investigation, beneficial ownership details must be recorded and accounts, whilst not on public record, must be kept.

Incorporation under IBC Act provides the following benefits and features

  • IBC companies are exempt from all local taxes and stamp duty (save for registration and annual license/franchise fees) even though the administration of an IBC may be from within the Seychelles;
  • There are no minimum issued share capital requirements;
  • An IBC is required to have a registered agent and office in the Seychelles. In most cases, nominee directors will also be employed to allow anonymity to be maintained when dealing with third parties;
  • Only one director is required. A company may serve as director. There are no nationality requirements for either directors or shareholders;
  • Only one shareholder is required;
  • The books and records of a company may be maintained anywhere;
  • Accounts whilst not required to be on public record must be maintained to international standards;
  • Directors have power to protect the assets of the company by transferring them to trustees, another company or other legal entities for the benefit of the IBC, its beneficial owner(s) and/or creditor(s);
  • Registered agents are authorised to verify and authenticate the signatures of all company directors and officers including those of the agents concerned;
  • The name of the corporation may be in any language. It must contain the word(s) Limited, Corporation, Incorporated, Sociedad Anonima, Societe Anonyme, an equivalent or an abbreviation thereto;
  • No accounts or annual summaries have to be filed with the Government, with the exception of the annual fee form to be completed and filed by the registered agent in the Seychelles but accountancy records must nevertheless be maintained by the company or agent if nominee directors or shareholders are used.

Domestic Corporation Tax

Not applicable

Personal Tax

Not applicable

Double Taxation Treaty Network

In order to consolidate its position as an international financial centre the Seychelles have sought to increase their tax treaty network, which now includes some 20 nations but most importantly includes China, South Africa and interestingly Cyprus.

Administration & Accountancy Services

Managed & Non-Managed Companies

SCF can provide Seychelles companies either in a non-managed or managed format. However, in general like all 'international business corporation' (IBC) jurisdictions Seychelles companies are generally used for 'holding' or low level consultancy purposes so full management services are not common, but this may not be the case with China or South Africa as the tax treaty provisions may require local management and control. However, virtually all Seychelles companies avail of our administration services from a convenient tax free location or sub-contracted out provider to ensure that corporate activities are separate from those of the beneficial owner

Fully Managed & Branch Registrations

Where required SCF can provide fully managed services and even branch registration in another jurisdiction where tax treaty protection is required. For further details please consult with a SCF sales consultant

Set-up & Annual Maintenance Fees

Please see the separate Seychelles Quotation Leaflet

The Ownership of Seychelles Companies

'Overhead' Discretionary Trusts or Private Interest Foundations

For tax planning reasons, normally pertaining to anti-avoidance provisions in a beneficial owner's 'home' country or place of fiscal residence, and/or because of a need to 'ring fence' IBC assets many clients owning a Seychelles company select to have it owned not by themselves but by an overhead discretionary trust or private interest foundation (PIF) normally located in the Seychelles itself (see Seychelles Private Interest Foundations).

For more information on discretionary trusts and/or private interest foundations please refer to the separate information leaflets.