Seychelles refuted creation of central register of company beneficial owners

The Seychelles Financial Services Authority (FSA) responded to the article published by the Reuters news agency on 6 July 2016, which reported the jurisdiction’s plans to establish a central register of company beneficial owners.

In the press release dated 19 July 2016 the Regulator officially informed that “this is not the case”, and the authors of the article had wrongly interpreted the earlier expressed comments of the Finance Minister.

In the meantime, Seychelles are indeed planning certain changes in documentary recording of beneficial ownership.

Only the registered agents (licensed local companies providing services of registration and maintenance of International Business Companies, IBC) currently have access to information on beneficiaries of the companies under their administration.

Same as before, the new International Business Companies Act (approved by the National Assembly in the late July 2016) will not require filing the beneficial ownership information with a central (i.e. state-run) register. However, the Act will oblige each Seychelles company to maintain its own register of beneficial owners and to keep it at its registered office in Seychelles. This step is designed to facilitate the timely access to information on ultimate beneficiaries in cases of criminal investigation, including tax evasion cases.
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