Company Formation in the Seychelles

Offshore company formation in Seychelles

Our subsidiary, Uniwide Corporate Services, as a licensed registration agent in the Seychelles, specializes in offshore registration services in the Seychelles. We hold licenses for international corporate services, trust services, and private fund registration and administration.

General Information about Offshore Companies in the Seychelles 

  • Introduction to Seychelles Offshores: Currently, the Seychelles is an attractive international financial center with modern legislation that meets international standards. It is one of the popular jurisdictions in the East African region with a favorable tax regime.
  • Geographical Location: The Seychelles is a group of islands in the Indian Ocean, east of Africa. The largest island is Mahé. The Republic of Seychelles (since 1976) is an independent state and a member of the Commonwealth. The capital is Victoria. Official languages are French, Seychellois Creole, and English. The national currency is the Seychellois Rupee (SCR).
  • Legal System of Seychelles: Includes elements of English common law and French civil law. The Constitution of 1993 is in effect.
  • Main Economic Sectors: International tourism (with regular air connections to the UAE and South Africa), commercial fishing. International corporate services and the financial sector also play a significant role.
  • Corporate Products of Seychelles: Companies registered in the Seychelles are widely used in international commercial activities. The main corporate product of Seychelles is the International Business Company (IBC). Additionally, there is the possibility to register private foundations (with legal entity status) and international trusts.
  • Corporate and Tax Legislation Reforms: Extensive reforms have been undertaken to ensure compliance with the latest international standards in tax transparency and anti-money laundering.
  • State Regulator: The Financial Services Authority (FSA).

Offshores in the Seychelles: International Business Companies (IBC)

Basic InformationOffshores in the Seychelles are typically understood as International Business Companies (IBC).
Legislative RegulationThe status, order of establishment, and activities are regulated by the International Business Companies Act of 2016.
Type of ActivityIBC companies can conduct any lawful business activity that does not require a special license, both within and outside the Seychelles.
Annual FeeSeychelles companies are required to pay a mandatory annual fee to renew their company’s status in the Register. Failure to pay the fee results in penalties and subsequent removal of the company from the register.
RedomiciliationThe possibility of redomiciliation (change of jurisdiction) of a foreign company to the Seychelles and continuation of its activities as a Seychelles IBC is provided. This tool can be very useful, for example, if there are unfavorable changes in legislation or a sharp increase in the costs of maintaining the company in the country of initial registration. In the case of redomiciliation (as opposed to registering anew in another country), the company retains its name, existing contracts, and assets.
Company ConversionThe possibility of conversion – transforming an International Business Company (IBC) into a regular (local) company, and vice versa, is provided.
Annual ReportCompanies are required to submit an annual report to the Companies Registry, including basic information about the company and confirmation of the location of its documentation.
Registration PeriodFrom 3 days.

Taxes, Accounting, and Reporting for Companies in the Seychelles

Taxes for Seychelles Companies 

  • Territorial Principle: An offshore in the Seychelles is no longer entirely tax-free – since 2019, a territorial taxation principle has been introduced in the country. This means that only those companies that earn income from sources within the Seychelles are subject to taxation there. Income derived from activities outside the Seychelles is not taxed.
  • Taxation of Passive Income: For a Seychelles company that is part of an international group and does not have a sufficient economic presence in the Seychelles, the latest rules (2020-2021) stipulate taxation even on income earned by the company from activities outside the Seychelles, including its passive income (such as dividends, interest, royalties, and rental income). Consequently, it is expected that a significant number of Seychelles IBC companies, now obliged to pay tax in the Seychelles on their foreign passive income, may lose the advantage of the territorial tax regime.
  • Corporate Income Tax: The standard tax rate on income derived from sources within the Seychelles is 25% for the first SCR 1,000,000 (approximately USD 75,000) and 33% on any amount above this threshold.

Reporting and Accounting for International Business Companies

  • Financial Reporting: If there are no revenues generated from sources within the Seychelles, offshore IBC companies are not required to submit financial statements to government bodies or to conduct an audit.
  • Document Retention: There are several requirements for the retention of corporate and financial documentation, with serious penalties for non-compliance. The financial (accounting) documentation maintained by the company should enable the preparation of comprehensive financial statements based on it.
  • Accounting Documentation Storage: The 2021 tax legislation reform mandates that Seychelles companies ensure the storage of their accounting documentation (bank statements, receipts, invoices, contracts, and other supporting documents) at their registered office in the Seychelles (i.e., the office of their registration agent) for the previous seven years. Subsequently, such documentation for each past half-year must be sent to the Seychelles every six months. Previously, a company had the right to store its financial documentation anywhere (both in the Seychelles and abroad), having notified the registration agent of the location of such storage.

Confidentiality and International Information Exchange

  • Information about the directors, shareholders, and beneficial owners of a company is confidential. Under normal circumstances, this information is only available to the local registration agent and the bank where the company’s account is held.
  • However, it is important to note that a centralized registry of beneficial owners of companies has already been established in the jurisdiction. The registry’s information is not publicly accessible, but local courts, law enforcement agencies, the Financial Services Authority, the Companies Registry, and others can access it. Beneficial owners of Seychelles companies are required to provide their registration agent with information about themselves as required by law, and the registration agent, in turn, is obliged to maintain and store the company’s register of beneficiaries and to submit the relevant information to the centralized database. Penalties are provided for non-compliance with these duties, both for registration agents and for the beneficiaries themselves.
  • The Seychelles participates in the Convention on Mutual Administrative Assistance in Tax Matters as amended by the 2010 Protocol (effective from 01.10.2015) and the Multilateral Competent Authority Agreement on Automatic Exchange of Financial Account Information (CRS MCAA). The Seychelles began automatic information exchange in practice in September 2017.
  • As of early 2022, the Seychelles participates in double taxation avoidance agreements with the following countries and territories: Bahrain, Barbados, Belgium, Bermuda, Botswana, Vietnam, Guernsey, Jersey, Zambia, Indonesia, Qatar, Kenya, Cyprus, China, Luxembourg, Mauritius, Malaysia, Monaco, UAE, Oman, Isle of Man, San Marino, Eswatini, Singapore, Thailand, Sri Lanka, Ethiopia, South Africa.
  • The Seychelles participates in bilateral agreements on the exchange of tax information (TIEA) with the following countries and territories: Guernsey, Greenland, Denmark, India, Iceland, the Netherlands, Norway, the Faroe Islands, Finland, Switzerland, Sweden.
  • In 2021, the Seychelles was removed from the so-called “blacklist” of the European Union, which includes jurisdictions that do not cooperate with EU countries in the tax area.

Terms and Conditions in the Seychelles

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