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A 'substantial' benefit: substance in the Seychelles islands

calendar 5/20/2022 8:00:00 AM
author Admin System

The Seychelles are a group of islands located in the Indian Ocean. If the name rings a bell, it’s because this is another one of those tiny countries that enjoy an exotic culture, breathtaking landscapes, and beautiful beaches. Like many other similar countries, Seychelles is also known as a former tax haven.

Besides being a touristic paradise with lush vegetation and multiple entertainment options, the Seychelles islands have caught the attention of many investors around the world. It comes with all the benefits of low tax countries with lax regulations: confidentiality, easy registration, cost-effectiveness, and stability. 

Benefits of establishing a Seychelles international business company 

Pro-business environment 

The Seychelle islands help businesses to thrive. This is the result of a friendly business policy and various tax exemptions. A Seychelles international business company, for example, pays virtually zero tax. Besides tax duty and normal taxes, your company won’t be taxable for transferring or selling shares. 

Moreover, thanks to its flexibility, this is the perfect jurisdiction if you want to engage in international business.


Information about directors, shareholders, and beneficial owners is not disclosed to the public. The only documents that can be found in public registries are the articles of association and memorandum. However, these do not contain any private information regarding the company, its owners, or managers. 

In line with this, the Seychelle islands have strict confidentiality regulations. The law prohibits a local company to share information with foreign entities for financial aid. 

Low costs

One of the most appealing features of going offshore is cost-effectiveness. Generally, these jurisdictions need the FDI to keep their economies running, hence, they offer simple requirements. Here,

you’ll find the paperwork to be minimum: you can have your Seychelles international business company up and running in only 3 business days. 

The costs are worthy of attention as well. The country's regulations, for instance, do not require a share capital deposited in advance. Registration is quite accessible and usually includes the first year fee. In general, government renewal fees are much lower here than in other jurisdictions. 

Fast and straightforward 

The Seychelles islands ask for fewer requirements than other corporate hubs. The first thing you need to do is choose a name, which can be in any language. Next, you’ll need to select a corporate structure and establish your legal address. If your line of business requires it, you’ll need to apply for a licence. Having a physical office is not mandatory for registration, but it is if you want to comply with the Seychelles substance requirements.

Economic stability and political soundness 

The first thing you need to consider when choosing an offshore country to establish your business is stability. It doesn’t matter how good are the current policies if they will be wiped out or even reversed when the next party takes the lead. 

Luckily, you won’t find such issues in Seychelles. This island nation has had a stable business-friendly government for years, and the current corporate regulations are a reflection of that. All government entities work efficiently and make numerous resources available for business people. 

More information

Coming back to reality: The Seychelles substance requirements

So far, everything sounds perfect, and it is. At least, is as close as you get to perfect these days. Since 2019, the OECD has established what they call ‘substance requirements’. The main objective is to prevent tax evasion. In other words, they intend to prevent business people from having a company in a certain country mainly for tax purposes. Somehow, it began to look suspicious when an IBC would be registered in a low tax jurisdiction while conducting all its business, having all employees, and issuing all the invoices abroad. In order to regulate and stop this kind of abuse, substance requirements came into force. 

The Seychelles substance requirements 

For a company to qualify as a tax resident in Seychelles, it must comply with the current substance regulations:

Accounting records

Every Seychelles international business company must present accounting records twice a year. These must be kept in Seychelles but won’t be filed before the authorities nor available for public inspection. 

However, if the company has a turnover that exceeds 3.7 million USD, it will have to present financial summaries on a yearly basis (besides the biannual accounting records). 

Physical office and staff

From the year 2020, Seychelle-registered companies must prove to have a physical office, local staff, and active directors on the islands. 

Overseas tax resident proof (non-residents)

Non-resident companies must present a tax residency certificate from abroad. Foreign tax ID and tax returns must also be submitted.

The scope of the requirements

Seychelles substance requirements apply to companies that work mainly in the financial industry. This includes shipping, banking, insurance, financing and leasing, fund management, holding, trading, and IP holding and licensing. 

Financial condition 

In order to be subject to Seychelles substance requirements, a company must meet two of the following criteria:

  • The balance sheet exceeds 20 million euros.
  • The net turnover exceeds 40 million euros.
  • The company has over 250 employees in a given financial year.

What can Mundo do for you

We are a financial publication that was created from NTL Wealth. This a prestigious fiduciary firm with over 30 years of experience in trust formation, citizenship by investment, and other financial services. 

Mundo was born from NTL and developed together with it, reaching new markets and developing further products. Thus, NTL and Mundo nurture each other, with NTL being the business core and Mundo its window to the world. 

We have a highly advanced platform with numerous features and a variety of articles published in four languages: English, Spanish, Russian, and Chinese. Thanks to this, we can provide comprehensive financial services at a global level. 

When it comes to the Seychelles substance requirements, we are proud to have strong connections with this country. Our NTL/Mundo expert has wide experience providing substance in Seychelles so that you can take your business to the next frontier.

Whether we like it or not, substance has become a key aspect for business people to remain compliant and keep operating. The offshore world still exists and it continues to bring enormous benefits to those who dare take their business abroad, the only difference is that it’s more regulated now. This is why you need an expert in corporate services such as Mundo to help you make the best of your business. 

Contact us


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