Mauritius is an example of social peace and unity in a multi-cultural society. Mauritius combines the traditional advantages of being an offshore financial center and is also known as a gateway for the structuring of investments into India, Europe and increasingly Africa. It has also grown to become a leading jurisdiction for private client services in the region offering various incentives and schemes to facilitate business in the country. Some of them are as follows:
- Smart city scheme (SCS)
The government’s objective through the Smart City Scheme, is to offer global investors the opportunity to share Mauritius’ vision of creating smart, innovative and sustainable cities for the future.
A company investing in the development of a smart city and/or its components benefit from the several incentives. As such they are exempted from:
- Income Tax for a period of 8 years from the issue of the SCS Certificate.
- Value-Added Tax paid on capital goods.
- Customs duty on import or acquisition of any dutiable goods, other than furniture, implicated in infrastructure works and development of building within the Scheme.
- Land Conversion Tax in respect of the land area earmarked for the development of non-residential components.
Investors applying and investing through the SCS will also benefit from a full recovery of VAT in terms of input tax allowable in terms of capital goods (building structure), plant, machinery and equipment.
- Property Development Scheme (PDS)
Upon the purchase of an asset under the PDS scheme, with an investment of more than USD 375,000 or the equivalent in any other foreign currency, a non-citizen of Mauritius will be eligible for a residence permit valid for a period of up to ten (10) years. For those who already possess a residence permit under this scheme, they will be exempted from an occupation or work permit to invest and work in the country.
- Invest Hotel Scheme (IHS)
This scheme allows hotel developers to finance the development of a hotel project by allowing them to sell villas, suites, rooms or other components that form part of the hotel to individual buyers.
The IHS provides as such, for the development of a hotel on either a freehold or a leasehold land of more than 1 hectare where units, villas, suites or other parts of the hotel may be sold – the buyer of a unit enters into a lease agreement / rent by which the property is leased / rented back to the seller; the unit leased to the seller may be used and occupied by the unit owner or any person on his behalf for a total period of not more than 45 days in any 12- month period.
The persons eligible to acquire parts of a hotel under this scheme include residents and non-residents, a foreign company registered under the Companies Act 2001, a trust, where the trustee services are provided by a qualified trustee licensed by the Financial Services Commission (FSC), among others.
- Youth Employment Program (YEP) Scheme
The main objective of the YEP is to facilitate the transition of young people from education to employment and to provide them with the core skills required by the different sectors of the economy. It also offers companies in the private sector the opportunity to recruit and train young people, between the ages of 16 and 35 years, for permanent employment if the companies are satisfied with the efforts provided by the trainees.
The registration for the YEP can be done online. The employer shall have a minimum of one year of operation with the recruits, with the required qualifications to fit the company’s area of operations. On the basis of the qualifications of the trainees, a monthly stipend must be provided accordingly:
- Higher School Certificate (HSC) holders: MUR 8,000 (approximately USD 200);
- Diploma holders: MUR 10,000 (approximately USD 250);
- Degree holders: MUR 15,000 (approximately USD 380)
Through the YEP, the employer shall be reimbursed on a monthly basis in the form and manner agreed with The Ministry of Labor, Human Resource Development and Training (MLHRDT) – 50 % of the monthly stipend to be refunded to the employer within 15 working days as from date of reception.
- International Fairs SME Refund Scheme
The objective of the scheme is to assist SMEs to expand their businesses through their participation in export promotion activities. Small and Medium Enterprises, incorporated in Mauritius with the Corporate and Business Registration Department (CBRD), having an annual turnover of less than MUR 50 million (approximately USD 1.3 million) are eligible to access this scheme, operating in the sectors of agriculture, creative industries, freeport & logistics, etc.
Activities and events refunded under this scheme are:
- Exhibitors in international fairs outside Mauritius whether on their own or led by an institution.
- Technology fairs for SMEs in the manufacturing and agri-business sectors.
- SMEs participating in fairs under a Mauritian pavilion.
- SMEs participating in buyer-seller meetings
SME’s normally benefit from a maximum of MUR 200,000 per financial year (approximately USD 5,000); which can be claimed on several occasions, provided that the refund ceiling of MUR 200,000 is not exceeded. Item refunded under the scheme includes:
- Participation fees (rental stand and registration fee where applicable);
- Travelling expenses.
- Accommodation (limited to one day prior, during and one day after the event).
- VAT Refund scheme – MICE and Event Registration
Mauritius is a prime MICE (Meetings, Incentives, Conferences, Exhibitions) destination in Africa. Beyond its numerous distinctions and fiscal incentives, a VAT Refund Scheme has been created to support the business and entertainment industry to hold major international events. Under the VAT Refund Scheme, an event planner, registered with the Economic Development Board (EDB) may submit an application to the Mauritius Revenue Authority (MRA) for refund of VAT in respect of accommodation costs for events with at least 100 visitors staying for a minimum of 3 nights for business meetings, conferences and weddings.
Applying for the scheme:
Event registration (Prior to the Event);
- Event Registration should be made online through the link at least 30 days prior to the date of the event
- VAT Claim (Post Event)
- It is required to submit to the EDB, no later than 60 days from the end of the event, a statement giving the following details:
- A list of visitors who attended the event;
- A breakdown of the number of nights stayed, the accommodation costs and the corresponding amount of VAT, per visitor;
- Details of each visitor and copy of VAT invoices in respect of accommodation costs issued by the hotel to those visitors, clearly specifying check in and check out dates.
- Claiming VAT amount
The EDB will, upon satisfaction, issue a certificate to the organizer, within 30 days after receipt and examination of the information provided. Upon the receipt of the certificate, the organizer may apply for the refund of VAT to the MRA, based on the figures provided by the EDB.
- The Entertainment Industry
The entertainment industry is a potential component of the economic development of Mauritius, as well as an alternative platform for potential foreign individuals and businesses. A competitive cash rebate of up to 40% of the Qualifying Production Expenditure (QPE) incurred in Mauritius makes the country one of the most attractive locations for shooting. The film rebate scheme supports Feature Films, high-end TV Drama series, TV Commercials, Documentaries, TV Reality Series, Music Videos, Games and Single Drama Series. The Mauritius Film Rebate Scheme is a project of the Economic Development Board (EDB) in partnership with the Mauritius Film Development Corporation (MFDC). The scheme is open both locally and internationally. The aim of the Film Rebate Scheme is to stimulate the interest of filmmakers and encourage them to shoot in Mauritius, thereby creating a new industry, jobs and skills, and a way of promoting the island. The Film Rebate Scheme is a cash back incentive for audio-visual productions in Mauritius.
KSN as your Counsellor
Depending on the field or sector of operation, we guide companies into determining which scheme(s) or incentives to consider, assisting in applications and ensuring that all the requirements are complied with and all the essential documents are readily available.
We are available should you want to discuss or should you need more information on the schemes and incentives proposed by the Mauritian government and your eligibility to them. You may contact us on the following information:
Phone number: +230 5974 2126