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Seychelles Economy Outlook

Updated time: 02 Jun, 2022, 16:24 (UTC+08:00)

Seychelles is an island republic in the Indian Ocean that consists of 115 islands. It is located east of mainland Africa, with Madagascar being the closest neighbor. In recent years, Seychelles has been famous for being a prominent financial offshore hub. In this article, we unveil the insight about Seychelles economy, explain why it can be among the best jurisdictions for considering forming an offshore business, and which types of business can be chosen to invest in Seychelles.

Seychelles economy overview

Seychelles economy overview

Seychelles economy overview

According to World Bank data, Seychelles' GDP (Gross Domestic Product) was valued at 1.12 billion US dollars in 2020. While Seychelles' GDP value represents less than 0.01% of the global economy, it has an impressive GDP per capita and GDP per capita PPP which are much higher than the world average.

The Seychelles GDP per capita was last measured in 2020 at 14086.96 US dollars and being approximately 112% of the global average. Also, Seychelles GDP per capita PPP is 137% compared to the world average, which values at 24361.89 US dollars in 2020.

Seychelles has a service-oriented economy with main economic sectors being tourism, hospitality, offshore financial services, and fishing. Among these, tourism plays the most important part in Seychelles economy, contributing more than 55% of the country's GDP, both directly and indirectly. It employs about 26% of the workforce.

For future sustainable development, the government aims to decrease the country's reliance on tourism by encouraging the growth of offshore financial services industry, communication and information services, as well as promoting the development of the renewable energy sector. This shift in Seychelles economy makes it an excellent jurisdiction for those who consider investing in offshore businesses.

Is Seychelles a developed or developing country?

A developed country has a developed economy, a stable and efficient government, a sturdy infrastructure, a strong educational system, plentiful employment possibilities, extensive health and social services, and a high degree of personal freedom. Countries that fall somewhat short of these targets are categorized as developing.

A lot of foreign investors, when considering Seychelles for a new offshore business, have asked the question “Is Seychelles a developed or developing country?” Even though the country has a very well-performing economy that ranked second in Africa's top ten most developed countries and being the country which has the highest GDP per capita in Africa, Seychelles is still rated as a developing country, according to the International Monetary Fund (IMF).

To explain that, Seychelles economy is not stable, and Seychelles’ GDP per capita tends to be low in comparison to more sophisticated countries. GDP per capita alone is an insufficient gauge of a country's economic health, particularly for an island state with a tiny population and a high sensitivity to external shocks.

Seychelles - a developing country

Seychelles - a developing country

Main industries in Seychelles

As mentioned above, tourism and fishing are by far the two most important economic sectors of the country. They heavily affect the Seychelles economy, especially to the exports and imports. Seychelles main imports are recreational boats ($466M in 2020 according to OEC) and Seychelles main exports are prepared or preserved fish, petroleum oils, and, in the past few years, motorboats. To know more about the Seychelles exports and imports here.

However, the Seychelles government is focusing on boosting other services detached from tourism to be a stable developed country, such as: offshore finance, communication and information, as well as the renewable energy sector. These are all very high potential industries not only in Seychelles but also all around the world.

Seychelles main industry - Tourism

Seychelles main industry - Tourism

Types of companies in Seychelles

With its real potential and good policies and incentives mentioned above, a vast majority of offshore companies have been founded here for investment purposes. If you’re having an intention to establish a company in Seychelles, you should first take into consideration the types of companies in Seychelles. Here are Seychelles’ main types of companies for foreign investors:

  • Seychelles international business company (IBC)
  • Seychelles limited partnership
  • Seychelles protected cell company
  • Seychelles trusts
  • Seychelles foundations

Whichever company type you choose, keep in mind that following the Seychelles business regulations is a must. For example, the International Business Corporations (Amendment) was approved by the government in 2011, requiring all Seychelles companies to keep suitable accounting records, a fine of US$25 is given for each day of non-compliance.

How to start to grasp the business opportunity in Seychelles

Understanding proper business requirements and documentation is essential for smooth setup in Seychelles. In some cases, the business rules and paperwork may change depending on different factors. To fulfill the standards of the nation's general and business law, the setup process needs to be taken into account carefully.

Furthermore, in order to lawfully operate business in Seychelles, you are required to have a proper company here. If you are a foreign investor, the first step is effectively setting up an offshore company in Seychelles.

Guide to setting up an offshore company in Seychelles

Setting up an offshore company in Seychelles

Setting up an offshore company in Seychelles

Seychelles has a quick incorporation process, taking as quick as two working days to complete. The company structure here attracts individuals and business entities who are interested in starting online services, such as counselors, dealers, or for the custody of real estate properties and other various fields.

Some of the main important steps when setting up an offshore company in Seychelles are:

  • Write the Articles of Association and submit them to the Registrar Companies in Seychelles;
  • Designate the IBC's directors;
  • Select a company location; and
  • Open a bank account in Seychelles.

Setting up an offshore company in Seychelles is not too difficult, however, working with a professional agent can speed up and secure your process.

One IBC with vast practical expertise can advise you on incorporating in Seychelles and over 27 other countries globally. We pledge to provide high-quality service through a competent and reliable business platform to which you can entrust your investment decisions.


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