Certain activities may be regulated such as Collective Investment Schemes, Closed-End Funds, Investment Managers, Investment Advisors, Investment Business, Insurance and Pensions, Banking, etc and may require holding a relevant licence in the jurisdiction of company incorporation before trading.
Mauritius has primarily two special tax and legal regime companies used for investments – a Category 1 (GBC1) and Category 2 (GBC2) Global Business License Company.
Mauritius GBC 1 and 2 companies are governed by the Companies Act, 2001 and regulated by the Mauritius Financial Services Commission (MFSC).
Companies holding a Category 1 Global Business License are resident for tax purposes and can access Mauritius' network of double taxation avoidance treaties, provided that they are properly structured and that the seat of management and control is in Mauritius and complying with other conditions imposed by the MFSC.
GBC1 can be used for a wide range of business activities, including but not limited to, investment holding, estate planning, trading, licensing and franchising, property ownership, financing, debt factoring, etc. In addition, a GBC1 is permitted to undertake global business activities, such as, Investment Funds, Captive Insurance, International Financial Services, Asset Management, Pension Funds and it can be structured as a Protected Cell Company.
Companies holding a Category 2 Global Business License are often used for trading and investment. GBC 2 companies are not resident for tax purposes and do not have access to Mauritius' tax treaty network.
GBC2 can generally be used for a wide range of business activities other than banking; financial services; holding or otherwise dealing with a collective investment fund or scheme as a professional functionary; providing registered office, nominee services, directorship services, secretarial services, or other services for corporations; and providing trusteeship services by way of business. In addition, a GBC2 is a flexible and suitable vehicle to hold and manage private assets such as property, trading, licensing and consulting.
GBC2 cannot trade within Mauritius and does not pay any tax on its world-wide profits in Mauritius.
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Mauritius is an independent island nation about 2000 kilometers (1,200 mi) off the southeast coast of Africa. It was a British colonial possession from 1810 to 1968, the year of its independence. The government uses English as the main language. It was formally a French Colony.
Mauritius is a democracy with a government elected every five years. The most recent National Assembly Election was held on December 2014 in all the 20 mainland constituencies, and in the constituency covering the island of Rodrigues. Elections have tended to be a contest between two major coalitions of parties.
The 2006–2014 Ibrahim Index of African Governance ranked Mauritius first in good governance. According to the 2015 Democracy Index compiled by the Economist Intelligence Unit that measures the state of democracy in 167 countries, Mauritius ranks 18th worldwide and is the only African country with "full democracy".
Mauritius is a member of the World Trade Organization, the Commonwealth of Nations, La Francophonie, the African Union, the Southern Africa Development Community (SADC), the Indian Ocean Commission, COMESA and formed the Indian Ocean Rim Association.
Mauritius has an upper middle income economy, according to the World Bank in 2011. The World Bank's 2016 Ease of Doing Business report ranks Mauritius 49nd worldwide out of 189 economies in terms of ease of doing business. According to the Mauritian Ministry of Foreign Affairs, the challenges faced by country are heavy reliance on a few industry sectors, high brain drain, scarcity of skilled labour, ageing population and inefficient public companies and parastatal bodies.
Mauritius has built its success on a free market economy, according to the 2013 Index of Economic Freedom Mauritius is ranked as having the 8th most free economy in the world, and the highest score in investment freedom. The report's ranking of 183 countries is based on measures of economic openness, regulatory efficiency, rule of law, and competitiveness.
In education French is taught from an early age alongside English and creole. The O-Level and A-Level examinations are through University of Cambridge International Examinations. The Tertiary Education sector includes universities and other technical institutions in Mauritius. The country's two main public universities are the University of Mauritius and the University of Technology. The Tertiary Education Commission's Strategic Plan envisages Mauritius as a regional knowledge hub and a centre for higher learning and excellence. Currently there are over 14 tertiary education centres on the Island. It promotes open and distance learning to increase access to post-secondary education and lifelong learning locally and regionally.