The reasons to invest in Mauritius
Just like Mauritius citizens, foreigners living here can invest in real estate. However, there are some takeaways to pay attention to before taking that road to this Indian ocean favorite. As a Mauritian resident who acquired citizenship in recent years through naturalization you may want to understand investment opportunities available for you. However, before that, get to know why you should invest in Mauritius. Any investment plan Mauritius as long you research about it and execute accordingly, can be a dream-come-true for an investor.
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Merits of the Mauritius Residence by Investment Program
Some of the advantages of the Mauritius Residence by Investment Program include the following:
- Great place to rent out your investment property
- Your entire family is eligible for residency in Mauritius, including your spouse, parents, and adopted children who are below 24 years old or less. For the other parties to seek employment opportunities in Mauritius, they should have a valid occupation or work permit
- The presence of international universities and schools
- Secure and safe environment
- Economic, political, and social stability
- A transparent, regulated, and sophisticated financial center
- Investments can provide you with a permanent residence permit with time
Most Suitable Investment Plans in Mauritius
If considering real estate investment Mauritius, you must adhere to government policies regardless of whether you’re a Mauritius citizen by birth or a foreigner. Here are Some of the real estate investment models introduced and modified in recent years for foreign investors and citizens:
1. Property Development Scheme (PDS)
The PDS is a Mauritius investment scheme, which was RES before 2015. Mauritian citizens, foreigners, and diaspora people from the country can go for this scheme. The investors can develop residential apartments on at least one arpent of land but not more than 50 arpents.
The residential units are luxurious, offering the occupiers commercial facilities and high-class leisure amenities. They also call for daily management services such as security, waste disposal, gardening, and maintenance.
There is no minimum amount required to purchase a PDS property. However, for non-citizens who want to qualify for residence permit upon the purchase, they must invest at least USD375,000.
2. Integrated Resort Scheme (IRS)
The Mauritian government developed the IRS (Integrated Resort Scheme) to attract foreign real estate investors. The luxury residential program attracts foreign investment while offering foreigners the opportunity to purchase freehold property.
You are free to buy any property under the existing IRS projects based on your budget. However, if you are a foreigner and want to qualify for a residence permit through IRS purchase, the minimum investment is USD375,000.
You will also be free to rent out the property or sell it and become tax resident in Mauritius. Another takeaway is that you won’t require a work permit or occupation permit as a non-citizen if the investment comes with a residence permit.
The Integrated Resort Scheme developments should also abide by these guidelines:
- High-class leisure, commercial facilities, and amenities
- Investors build residential estates on a minimum of 10 hectares
- Contributing socially to neighboring communities
- Management services such as maintenance and security
3. Real Estate Scheme (RES)
The government established RES (real estate scheme) in 2006, and it comes with a range of investment opportunities. Both citizens and foreigner investors can acquire a villa, duplex, penthouse, apartment, or any other residential property under existing RES projects.
RES projects usually stand on land with a surface area greater than 4221 square meters but less than 10 hectares. Just like IRS and PDS projects, a foreigner will be eligible for residence permit if they purchase an RES property for USD375,000 or more.
They can also rent out or sell the real estate and becomes tax resident. Once they receive the resident permit the work or occupation permit seizes to be a requirement. Those who want a permanent residence permit can apply later for the same and meet all the requirements.
4. Investment Hotel Scheme (IHS)
An investor can go for this scheme by financing a hotel project development. It will allow them to sell rooms, suits, and even villas or any amenity as part of the hotel.
The hotel can be on a leasehold or a freehold property that’s 1 hectare or more. All citizens, foreigners, and people living in the diaspora are eligible to invest in this scheme as long as they comply with the terms. All Mauritius investment opportunities are properly articulated to ensure that every investor is convinced and their investment meet their return expectations.
To invest in a stand-alone villa, you need at least US$ 500,000. However, for other IHS units, there are no minimum amount restrictions. The owner of the IHS property or any person acting on his behalf can stay here for only 45 days every year.
If the investment in the hotel unit or villa is USD375,000 or more, then a non-citizen owner will automatically qualify for a residence permit and eventually get permanent residence permit.
5. G+2 Scheme
The G+2 program allows foreigners to acquire apartments situated in condominium developments at least two levels above the ground. The minimum purchase price for a property under G+2 scheme MUR 6 million or an equivalent in other types of currency. This is one of the investment opportunities that most investors go for since easy to manage and has fair terms to qualify.
Foreign investors who acquire property exceeding USD 375,000 under this program are eligible for a residence permit. It allows them to reside in the nation together with their dependents as long as they remain the owners of the property.
6. Smart City Scheme (SCS)
Under the SCS scheme, an investor can go for luxurious residential units on freehold land with not less than one arpent. You can also develop commercial and leisure amenities in residential properties.
The Smart City Projects encourage development of business in different industries due to its cosmopolitan concept. For instance, investment in biotechnology, education, ICT, health, logistics, financial, retirement village, or manufacturing among others.
As a non-citizen, you qualify for a residence permit if you purchase a property under Smart City Scheme worth USD375,000 or more.
Venturing into Stock Market in Mauritius
Apart from venturing into Mauritius’s real estate market, one can also invest in Mauritius’s stock exchange SEM (opens in a new tab). The best investment in Mauritius is the one that is in line with your passion, affordable and have high returns. Here are other options investment opportunities in Mauritius.
And for those who may be wondering whether it is safe to invest in the country or not, we have good news for you.
Why invest in Mauritius? Is it safe? Fortunately, Mauritius ranked 33 among 192 countries on the list of Investment Safety Rankings.
Now, if a foreigner wants to invest in the Stock Exchange of Mauritius, they need to create an account known as Central Depository & Settlement (CDS) through an authorized agent in the country. You will use this account to keep your shares, and it is usually similar to a brokerage account.
Everything in this venture is in English, which makes it easy for foreign investors to transact.
Investment Funds in Mauritius
Mauritius is one of the top jurisdictions in the creation and administration of funds in Sub-Saharan Africa. The country is renowned for structuring foreign investments in Asia and Africa, attracting investors and fund managers from different parts of the world.
Some of the things contributing to the booming fund market are favorable tax policies and treaties, flexible and quality legislation, political stability, excellent infrastructure, a reliable time zone, and skilled employees’ availability.
In year 2020, World Bank ranked Mauritius 13th compared to 190 countries through the Ease of Doing Business Report. This shows how strong their banking and financial system is and the world bank has several projects in the country to make things even better.
Investments funds in Mauritius structure into different structures.
These include a company, a trust, a protected cell company, foundation, limited partnership, or any other approved entity by Mauritius Financial Services Commission (opens in a new tab) (FSC). The economic development board helps a lot in providing guidelines to ensure every business process or investment is done as per the set regulations.
The funds can be variable share capital under CIS (Collective Investment Fund) or fixed share capital, names as private equity funds.
Investors interested in investment funds in Mauritius must apply for authorization through a licensed management company in Mauritius.
Types of Investments Funds in Mauritius
- Global CIS
- Professional CIS
- Specialized CIS
- Expert CIS
- Self-managed schemes
Reasons to invest in Mauritius
1. Favorable Tax Policies
Mauritius’ government wants to make the country a financial hub for both local and foreign investors. To ensure that this happens, they are encouraging them by offering low tax rate and exemptions. They include no tax on inheritance and dividends, no VAT (opens in a new tab) or customs duties on equipment, tax credits of 80% for Mauritius offshore companies.
Only 15% tax rate on personal incomes and company profits, and a refundable VAT of 15%. You should also know that capital gains are free from taxation. For investors who may be worried about being taxed from home and in Mauritius, this is covered by double taxation agreements. It is a way to encourage visitors to work and operate businesses in Mauritius without being overtaxed. It is also very convenient for a global business trying to minimize costs.
Comparing these rates with other neighboring countries would prove to you that Mauritius is a tax heaven.
2. Free-Trade Economy
There is no foreign investor who would invest in any country if they feel that their money or wealth is not safe. The government knows this fact and capitalizing in Mauritius makes it a worthy risk. Apart from ensuring paramount asset protection for all investors, they have also embraced a free-trade economy to encourage more people to invest in the country.
In the year 2013, a famous Wall Street Journal ranked Mauritius in 8th place when it comes to economic freedom prevalence. The Board of Investment and economic development board makes sure that setting a legal business in the country is as easy as possible.
Within the past three decades, a lot has changed including, Mauritius Free-port becoming a free-trade for all re-export products. The government has also facilitated opening a new counter in the port area, which is a modern infrastructure to quicken the delivery of necessary investors’ permits.
All this ensures that Mauritius becomes the logistical and regional zone for storage, distribution, and business conduction, serving south Africa, East Africa, and Indian ocean nations.
Mauritius acquired independence in 1968, and since then, this great place or nation has always been politically stable. Since the colonization of Britain, the country’s political structure is substantially borrowed from the British Parliamentary model.
Political and social stability are paramount and that’s why they follow the democratic principles, separation of powers, executive and judiciary, and legislature.
Mauritius is made of a bilingual population and people are quite friendly and welcoming. It makes it easy for any global business to operate and blossom without the fear of political and social unrest.
Good governance is important and your investment in Mauritius has opportunity to blossom, operating in a safe social, economic and political environment. According to Mo Ibrahim index, Mauritius ranked as the first compared to 54 countries in Africa when it comes to good governance. The crime rate is very low, making it comfortable to invest here without fear. The country is culturally rich and organizations such as heritage foundation are doing good researching and conserving their culture.
4. It is Strategic Location
Mauritius sits on the crossroad of Asia and Africa in the Indian ocean, and this geographical positioning makes it a reliable hub for commerce. It connects Asia, India, and Africa to other parts of the world. Its time zone, which is GMT+4, is also a convenient factor for business people. Is this a question of where to invest money in Mauritius in terms of location or the right investment opportunity? It could be both and most cities in Mauritius are all business hubs, especially the real estate industry and more it’s an amusing nation. For instance, Grand Baie and Port Louis are known for attractive tourists’ spots, fun activities including amazing water sports.
5. Availability of Qualified and Skilled Labor
Mauritius’ literacy rate stands above 80%, and most populations can speak both English and French languages. Also, most young people in the country have an education, making it easy for businesses to acquire the right talents. Apart from studying in Mauritian universities such as the University of Mauritius (opens in a new tab), some will enroll in foreign universities to improve their training.
6. Economic Stability
One of the reasons why a retired non citizen or investor could consider going to Mauritius compared to the neighboring countries is its economic stability. The country’s GDP per capita has always been above $15,000, and the Mauritian government, in collaboration with the Board of Investment, keeps on developing policies and legislation that maintains this standard.
For instance, starting a business within three days and investor protection (opens in a new tab) has greatly encouraged many people to invest in Mauritius. A stable country holds a great reputation when it comes to offshore businesses. Most industries are thriving including farming and sugar cane which is grown all over the country, is a great contributor to the country’s GDP.
They have also signed investor-beneficial treaties and agreements to uphold this protection. For instance, double taxation, which is a fear of most investors and residents is taken care of by such agreements.
These include the Multinational Investment Guarantee Agency, the 1958 New York Convention, and the International Center for the Regulation of Investment Disputes.
7. No Exchange Control
Strict exchange control is one reason why most potential investors avoid investing in a given region — such control may lead to delay or loss of business deals.
Mauritius has put no such rules in place in an effort to encourage investors. It means that an investor is free to transfer dividends, profits, or capital to any other country without a hitch.
Reasons to invest in Mauritius – SUMMARY
As a foreign investor interested in Mauritius citizenship, you can take advantage of the Mauritius Residence by Investment Program. The best investment in Mauritius, however, is one that you have researched on before committing your funds. As an investor, you can determine which scheme suits you best depending on your financial capacity and needs. Mauritius is a stable country, economically, socially and also politically.
What are the best investment plans in Mauritius?
- Property Development Scheme (PDS)
- Integrated Resort Scheme (IRS)
- Real Estate Scheme (RES)
- Investment Hotel Scheme
- G+2 Scheme
What are the advantages of investing in Mauritius?
- Favorable Tax Policies
- Free-Trade Economy
- Social and Political Stability
- It is Strategic Location
- Availability of Qualified and Skilled Labor
- Economic Stability
- No Exchange Control
How to invest in Mauritius?
- Obtain a Citizenship Through Foreign Investment
- A Passport Through Foreign Investment
- Occupation Permit