Mauritius | Kenya | Seychelles
 
 
Axis specializes in developing trust
structures that protect your assets.
As part of its regional expansion, Axis has now established a presence in Seychelles and Kenya.
Axis can set up and manage tax-incentive companies and offshore entities in Mauritius.
Mauritius has recently opened up its
real-estate market to foreigners.
Axis provides specialist offshore fund
services for a full range of fund structures.
Axis further consolidates its preferred relationship with BLC Robert by becoming an affiliate of ALN.
 
In Brief
News

MAURITIUS 2017-2018 BUDGET BRIEF


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MAURITIUS 2016-2017 BUDGET BRIEF


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See latest article written by Assad Abdullatiff on how "Mauritius can aspire to become a mid-shore jurisdiction"


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Article on the dynamics of the new SA-Mauritius DTA


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Axis is currently participating in and sponsoring the 2nd Annual Mines and Money Africa Mauritius Conference


The conference is being held at the Intercontinental Hotel, Balaclava, Mauritius. The conference is an exclusive African- focused mining investment summit which started off on the 8th of June and is closing tomorrow. 




China - Africa Forum: Opportunities, Challenges and Structuring Solutions of Investing in Africa - proudly organized by Axis, BLC, Africa Legal Network (ALN) & AfrAsia Bank


http://investin.com.cn/index.php/en/invest-in/conferences/2636/china-africa-forum-opportunities-challenges-and-structuring-solutions-of-investing-in-africa


Mr Assad Abdullatiff highlighted in AfricaMoney that the reopening of the financial promotion agency is essential to strengthen Mauritius position as a regional finance centre and attract global businesses to the island economy. See attached article.


http://africamoney.info/financial-expertspeak-mauritius-must-have-dedicated-financial-promotion-agency/


The new Minister of Finance Honourable Vishnu Lutchmeenaraidoo , presented his first budget on the 23rd of March 2015 which he qualified as a no tax budget.


Should you wish to refer to the full budget speech and to its supplements, please refer to our Resources Section Under Law and Regulations.


In the pre-budgetary wake, Assad Abdullatiff gives an insight on the Country's economic and financial services opportunities and challenges ahead in today's L' Express newspaper


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Assad Abdullatiff contributed an article on the Global business sector in the Business Magazine - Business YearBook


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Assad Abdullatiff was invited to take part in a forum organised by the Mauritius Branch of the IFA on Friday 06 March 2015 where he made a presentation.


Assad's presentation was on the Opportunities and Challenges in respect of investments in Eastern and Southern Africa and the role Mauritius can play.The Chief Guest of the Forum was the Minister of Financial Services, Good Governance and Institutional Reforms, Mr. Sudarshan Bhadain. The forum was presided by Mr. Rajesh Ramloll, Chairman of IFA Mauritius and also saw the participation of Mr. M. Mosafeer, Technical adviser to the MRA, who presented on the Challenges of new peer review methodologies. The forum was attended by a number of members of IFA Mauritius, members from STEP Mauritius and representatives of the main stakeholders of the financial services industry. 

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Axis is currently recruiting Client Executives!


Check out the attached for more information.

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AXIS along with BLC, participated again at the Investing in African Mining Indaba conference held in Cape Town on the 9th-12th February 2015, which welcomed more than 7,250 global professionals including 2,100 international companies from six continents


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Check out our latest newsletter by clicking on the link below


http://www.icontact-archive.com/znSu4WzEXIvnAXDQX5LGivYrWukyxPVA?w=3


Assad Abdullatiff from Axis and Mushtaq Namdarkhan, from BLC contributed to the Mauritius Chapter in the publication entitled : ADR and Trusts: an international guide to arbitration and mediation of trust disputes by Grant Jones and Peter Pexton.


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Axis is currently recruiting Senior Client Executives/Client Executives!


Check out the attached for more details

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Mauritius elects new Prime Minister!


Following the recent National Elections held on Wednesday 10 December 2014, Sir Anerood Jugnauth is now the new Prime Minister of Mauritius, after the 84-year old won a landslide victory taking nearly three-quarters of seats in parliament where his entre-right Alliance Lepep swept up 47 out of 62 seats in the parliament. The coalition of the outgoing ruling Labour Party (PTR) led by the former Prime Minister Dr Navin Ramgoolam and the former opposition Mauritian Militant Movement (MMM) of Mr Paul Berenger, took just 13 seats


Participation of Axis in the SuperReturn Africa 2014 conference!


AXIS along with BLC, was one of the main sponsors at the recent SuperReturn Africa 2014 conference held on 3 and 4 December at the Westin Cape Town. We were also part of the panel on the theme ” SME Investing “ on the first day. The event, as usual, was the largest meeting place for the African & Global Private Equity LPS & GP communities and was a real success.

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FSC no longer allows financial statements to be prepared in accordance with the SA GAAP


Following amendments to the South African Companies Act, entities in South Africa are no longer allowed to use the "SA GAAP’ and need to use IFRS for the preparation of financial statements.

In this respect, FSC Mauritius will no longer accept audited financial statements prepared in line with the SA GAAP.

As a recap, a Company holding a GBC1 licence, may without the prior approval of the FSC, prepare its audited financial statements in accordance with the following internationally recognised standards:

 (a)          UK GAAP;

(b)          US GAAP; and

(c)           Singaporean GAAP.


FSC issues a FAQ on Financial Intermediaries!


The FSC has recently issued a "FAQ" on the definition of Financial Intermediaries that fall under its purview under the Securities Act 2005, the Insurance Act 2005, and the Financial Services Act 2007. Please refer to the attached circular from the FSC.

Should you wish to have more information, please do not hesitate to contact us further

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The FSC issues new competency standards! Please refer to the attached link to our latest newsflash for more information!


http://www.icontact-archive.com/znSu4WzEXIvnAXDQX5LGioESSlmiqH1J?w=3


The FSC releases a new Communique on IFRS for small and medium entities! For more information, please refer to the attached link to our latest newsflash.


http://www.icontact-archive.com/znSu4WzEXIvnAXDQX5LGisSpFQXPAOHM?w=3


Participation of Axis in the China Offshore Summit 2014 in Shanghai!!


AX1S and BLC Chambers participated in the China Offshore Summit 2014 in Shanghai as one of the main sponsors for the event on the 15th and 16th of October. This is our 3rd participation following the Beijing Summit earlier this year and the one of last year. We were part of a panel discussion held on the 15th on the theme of Succession Planning for Families in China by Using Offshore Vehicles Properly.


Assad Abdullatiff contributed to the Chapter on Mauritius in the World's Leading Financial and Trust Centres Book ( 2nd Edition)


This is being published with the kind permission from Bloomsbury Professional Ltd, an imprint of Bloomsbury Publishing Plc. For further information please refer to : http://www.bloomsburyprofessional.com/1665/Bloomsbury-Professional-World-s-Leading-Financial-and-Trust-Centres--Second-Edition.html'

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Axis features in the September 2014 Issue of Business Magazine !


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(DTAA) Between the Republic of Mauritius and the Republic of Rwanda - Now in force !!



Check out the newsflash for further information.


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Kenya ratifies the Mauritius/DTA treaty



The Government of the Republic of Kenya has recently ratified the Double Taxation Treaty (DTA)  with Mauritius through the publication of a legal notice to that effect in the Kenya Official Gazette on 23 May 2014 and becomes effective on 1 January 2015.




Read more for details 

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Check out the link below for Axis latest newsletter!


http://www.icontact-archive.com/znSu4WzEXIvnAXDQX5LGilcYrhZ80vze?w=3


BLC Chambers hosts ALN Annual Conference in Mauritius


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OECD Report 2013 released - Mauritius largely compliant!!


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Imposition of administrative penalties by the FSC


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Amendments to FSC Global Business Guide



The FSC recently published a communique regarding amendments to the Guide to Global Business. In addition to existing requirements for GBC1s to have a presence which can be reasonably expected from a corporation managed and controlled in Mauritius, other conditions are now expected to be complied with. These new requirements should be implemented by January 1, 2015. 


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Axis Budgetary highlights! Please download the pdf document for more information!


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The Mauritius/South Africa DTT renegotiated!!


Mauritius and South Africa signed a renegotiated double tax treaty on 17 May 2013. The new treaty is expected to be effective from 1 January 2015. The main changes to the DTA relate to withholding taxes, dual residence for persons other than individuals and capital gains taxes.

The existing treaty was signed in 1996 at a time when South Africa had a source based system of taxation and no capital gains tax. It is therefore not surprising that South Africa has set about amending tax treaties that are more adapted to current times.

In general, the new DTA will put Mauritian companies in a less favourable position than was previously the case. This is true in the context of dual resident companies, loans to South African borrowers and investment in companies owning immovable property in South Africa.

However, this does not necessarily mean that the use of Mauritian companies is not beneficial in other international structures any more. Although these changes do make Mauritius marginally less attractive as an investment route into South Africa, its attractions for investment out of South Africa remain unaffected, and it will no doubt still hold its relative attraction for a general gateway into Africa.


A new vehicle in the Mauritian arena: the Special Purpose Fund


One of the most important 2012 budgetary measures was to promote Mauritius as a jurisdiction of substance and diversify its product offering to investors. Mauritius already ranks amongst the most flexible and advantageous fund domiciles due in no small part to the wide array of existing funds.

In order to further enhance our competitiveness and strengthen our position in the International Financial Services arena, the Special Purpose Fund (“SPF”) regime was introduced in Mauritius with the promulgation of the Financial Services (Special Purpose Fund) Rules 2013 made by the Financial Services Commission ("FSC").

Accordingly, an SPF will enjoy “tax exempt” status in Mauritius. However, an SPF will not hold any global business licence and will not avail from benefits under the Double Taxation Agreements or any other tax arrangements that Mauritius has entered into with its various treaty partners.

The conditions on which the FSC shall approve a fund as an SPF are:

1. To conduct investment solely in countries which do not have tax arrangements with Mauritius; or

2. To invest mainly in securities whose returns will be exempted from taxation; or

3. All investors of an SPF are pension schemes or other persons entitled to tax exemptions.


Important legislation under review in Seychelles


The current Civil Code- as Chapter 33 of the laws of Seychelles is normally referred to - is being reviewed by a panel of stakeholders and a committee has been set up with Judge MathildaTwomey as Chairperson to undertake this task.

The Seychelles has a dual tradition: a civil law one, ever since the French Civil Code was promulgated by the original settlers, who were French, and a common law one that dates back to 1814. The former is the consequence of the introduction by the French settlers of the Napoleonic Code, which was not superseded by the common law when Britain obtained control over the islands. Indeed, it was retained by the British authorities and, to this day, the French Civil Code, the Commercial Code, and the French Code of Civil Procedure, in the original French language, constitute the backbone of the legal system of the Islands.

 It would be true to say that the French law applicable to the Islands is much more faithful to the original version of the French Codes than present French law, partly because it has been found difficult to keep up with the legal evolution of France, but also partly because innovations and reforms tended to be made by common lawyers who, being generally unfamiliar with French law, preferred to introduce separate legislation.

The Civil Code (Code Napoleon) has been in the country’s law book since 1804. Its last review was held in 1975.

This review of the country’s most important piece of legislation, after the Constitution, is thus well overdue and the intent is to make it more relevant to the international legal exposure of Seychelles as a jurisdiction.


Read the latest article by Assad Abdullatiff on Trusts/Foundations


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Uhuru Kenyatta declared Kenya\'s fourth president by the Supreme Court of Kenya


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The IMF releases its recommendations and findings following the 7th program review under the Extended Fund Facility (EFF) Arrangement with Seychelles in December last year!


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Have a look at the latest Article by Assad Abdullatiff on Family Offices


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Leading international law firm Harneys and Mauritius top-ranked BLC Chambers join up to give an unprecedented reach to their offshore client base !


Leading international offshore law firm Harney Westwood & Riegels and BLC Chambers, a leading commercial and corporate law practice in Mauritius, have announced a new association. Under the terms of the agreement now in effect Harneys and BLC will combine forces to offer clients of their respective firm access to a greater array of legal and corporate services.



Global Managing Partner of Harneys Peter Tarn commented: “Over the past 18 months Harneys has been systematically developing our Africa practice and this new association with BLC Chambers is very much in keeping with our objective to be the undisputed offshore leader in Africa. While the business case for Harneys and for our clients are clear, the aspect of this association which generates the most excitement for us is the cultural fit between Harneys and BLC and our shared commitment to quality and client service.”

Iqbal Rajahbalee, Managing Partner at BLC Chambers, hailed this association as a unique platform for supporting business development in Africa: “This association is driven by clients’ demand. We share with Harneys the same passion for quality service. The synergy developed with a firm as respected as Harneys will expand BLC’s global reach and extend the array of services we are able to offer to our clients. We believe that together Harneys and BLC will be the first choice for offshore work in Africa and Asia.”

BLC Chambers is ranked as a top tier Mauritius firm by Chambers and Partners and IFLR1000. The firm practices predominantly corporate, finance and investment funds law and boosts of an experienced litigation wing. Its related corporate and fiduciary services are organised under Axis Fiduciary Ltd, which has offices in Mauritius, Seychelles and in Kenya. BLC Chambers is also a member of the Africa Legal Network (ALN), an association which spreads across some 14 jurisdictions in Africa.

Harney Westwood & Riegels was founded in 1960 and practices BVI, Cayman, Cyprus and Anguilla law through a network of 6 offices around the world.  Consistently ranked as a top tier firm by all three leading independent ranking directories, the firm has 30 partners and practices a wide range of corporate, funds, finance, private client and litigation law. The firm offers BVI and Cayman corporate and fiduciary services through its associated business, Harneys Services.

Mauritius, known for its favourable tax regime and extensive network of double tax treaties and investment protection agreements, has recently become an increasingly popular jurisdiction for the registration of investment funds. Its location in the Indian Ocean near Africa, the Middle East, India and China places it in an advantageous geographic position with easy access to key emerging economies.

For more information about the association between Harneys and BLC Chambers and the services which the firms offer please contact:



Iqbal Rajahbalee

Managing Partner – BLC Chambers

Tel. +230 213 7920

Iqbal.r@blc.mu



Patrick Colegrave

Harneys – Counsel

Tel. +26 377 704 6829

Or Tel. +44 780 863 9835

Patrick.colegrave@harneys.com


Latest news!!! Axis reaches a new milestone in the African Continent by becoming an affiliate of ALN !!!





 


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New Format of the Tax Residency Certificate to be issued!


The government of Mauritius is likely to issue a new format for the tax residency certificate (TRC) for foreign institutional investors (FIIs), incorporating additional particulars required by the Indian government. The new format proposed by the Mauritian government includes details such as address of the assessee, his/her tax identification number (TIN) and the status of the entity as to whether it is an individual, partnership or a company.

The aim is to enhance transparency and help in the better identification of ultimate beneficiaries of these investments. Concerns have been raised in the past about Indian black money, especially from politically connected people, being round-tripped through the FII route. The proposed changes in the TRC format are likely to help identify the source of funds as closely as possible. Entities issued  with TRCs already might have to get those reissued under the new format, officials said.



These amendments are a positive move from the Mauritius government to cooperate with the Indian government on tax issues to dampen the negative impression on the Mauritius- India Treaty benefits. Clearly, the intention of the Government in introducing the change is to ensure that treaty benefits are claimed only by genuine residents, and that income is not let off from being taxed.

 


Lifting of Ban for Norfund to use Mauritius as an African platform


Norfund (Norwegian Investment Fund for Developing Countries) is an investment company intended to establish and develop profitable and sustainable enterprises in poor countries. The objective is to contribute to economic growth and poverty alleviation.



In 2009, acting on the recommendation of a report on ‘Tax Havens and Development’ – prepared by an international taskforce against illicit financial flows, the Norwegian Minister for Development, Mr Erik Sölheim banned Norfund, from using Mauritius as an Investment Platform.



Since then, a serious attempt has been made to restore confidence in Mauritius as a springboard to invest in Africa and we now have official confirmation that the Norwegian authorities have lifted the ban with the entry into force of the Mauritius- Norway TIEA (Tax Information Exchange Agreement).


Banyan Tree Bank sprouts in Ebne


Our banking landscape has recently seen the addition of its 21st Bank with the arrival of another Commercial Bank namely the Banyan Tree Bank.  The new bank is a collaboration between Indian, Mauritian and international businessmen and banking professionals .



Upon granting the banking license at an inaugural ceremony in the presence of the interim CEO, Mr Sanjiv Singhal, the Governor of the Bank of Mauritius, Mr Rundheersing Bheenick, proudly commented on the trust which foreign investors place in our banking sector. He further added that there is still scope for more competition and added that there is room for the banking sector to grow in size and sophistication to diversify consumer choice.

This new addition affirms Mauritius’ position as the new financial hub of the Indian Ocean.


Article By Assad Abdullatiff on Private Wealth Management


We are delighted to share with you an article contributed by our Managing Director, Assad Abdullatiff, in the Mauritius IFSC Review published by the Board of Investment.



Please feel free to let us know if you wish to have any further information

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News Flash: Mauritius and Congo sign an Economic Cooperation Agreement!!!


After the signature of Double Taxation Avoidance Agreements (DTAAs) with the Republic of Nigeria in August and with the Republic of Kenya in May, the Republic of Mauritius now signed a Partnership Agreement with the Republic of Congo on 20th September 2012 at the Intercontinental Hotel, Balaclava, Mauritius .

 

The aim of the agreement is for the Mauritian Government to assist its Congolese counterpart in setting up a Board of Investment to promote investment in their country. The Congolese Government has expressed a strong desire to increase the amount of foreign direct investment (FDI) in their country.

This follows the strategy of the Mauritian Government to become for Africa what Singapore and Hong Kong currently are for Asia and China: The Ideal Gateway.

Mauritius has already signed agreements with 13 African Countries- Others in the pipeline and in the negotiation stage include Nigeria, Malawi, Egypt and Ghana.

Nearly half of the investment funds targeting the African market are set up in Mauritius where it benefits from a sound legal framework which is continually  being improved to further enhance the image of our

Several Mauritian companies are already present in Africa in sectors such as the sugar industry, financial services and information and communication technology (ICT). A hotel construction project in Congo is also in the pipeline.


News Flash: The Stock Exchange of Mauritius wins Africa Investor Award!


The Stock Exchange of Mauritius (SEM) has won the award for “Most Innovative African Stock Exchange of the year” at the Institutional Investment Summit and Index Series Awards organized by Africa Investor.

 

The SEM was awarded the top prize for its initiative implemented to embrace new development and to set up programs to enhance the services it provides to its key shareholders. Its compliance with international standards was also recognized.

 

At the same ceremony, the Financial Services Commission (FSC) Mauritius was the recipient of the “Most Innovative Capital Market Regulator of the year”.

 

The awards were presented to both institutions, which topped the list for the second consecutive year, at a ceremony held at the New York Stock Exchange on Friday 21st September. 


News Flash: The Private Pension Scheme Act comes into operations on the 1st of November 2012


The Private Pension Schemes Act which comes into operation on the 1st November 2012 is expected to provide a comprehensive and modern regulatory and supervisory framework for the operation of private pension schemes in order to ensure the protection of members and beneficiaries and the soundness of such pension schemes.

 

The private pension sector consists of about 1,500 private pension schemes approved by the Mauritius Revenue Authority under the Income Tax  Regulations 1996. These private schemes cover more than 100,000 employees with funds estimated at more than Rs 34 billion and are expected to grow further both in terms of number of employees covered by these schemes as well as the value of funds involved.

 

Under the general framework laid down in the Act, the FSC will be able to license, approve, monitor, supervise and control the private pension industry in Mauritius so as to meet international standards


News Flash: Shome panel on GAAR implementation


The much anticipated outcome of the Shome panel deliberations failed to materialize on October 1st as was initially announced. The Indian Finance Minister P. Chidambaram stated that the Income Tax department will come out with final guidelines on implementation of the General Anti Avoidance Rules (GAAR) by the end of October.

 

He added that the issue of retrospective taxation which will inter-alia decide the fate of Vodafone’s Rs 12,000 – crore tax case with the Indian government would be put on the Finance Ministry’s website for comments as soon as possible. 


Mauritius and Nigeria Sign Double Taxation Agreement


The Republic of Mauritius and the Republic of Nigeria signed a Double Taxation Avoidance Agreement (DTAA) on 10th August 2012 at Le Maritime Hotel in Balaclava, Mauritius. The agreement was signed by the Vice-Prime Minister, Minister of Finance and Economic Development, Mr Xavier-Luc Duval  and the Minister of Finance and Coordinating Minister for Economy of Nigeria, Dr. Mrs Ngozi Okonjo-Eweala.

 

At the signing ceremony, Vice-Prime Minister Duval highlighted and emphasised the increasing role of Mauritius as a gateway for investment in Africa. He maintained that Mauritius is willing to strengthen economic relations with Nigeria and stated that “Nigeria which is the second fastest growing economy in Africa with seven percent average growth over the last decade offers important opportunities for Mauritian businessmen”.  Mr. Duval outlined the hotel industry, agriculture, food processing, ICT, construction and financial services as potential sectors where both countries can trade.

 

For her part, Mrs Ngozi Okonjo-Eweala recalled that Nigeria has several natural resources mainly minerals and oil. According to her, the level of trade within Africa is low mainly due to trade barriers. She expressed the hope that the DTAA will help bring down those barriers and improve integration between Nigeria and Mauritius.

 

The DTAA will give further spur to the positive evolution of economic ties between the two countries by providing greater tax certainty for businessmen while making clear the taxing rights of Mauritius and Nigeria on all forms of income arising from cross-border economic activities. It will also give a boost to cross-border investment by protecting investors from direct or indirect double taxation and enhance the commercial and economic relations and broaden investment opportunities for the business community of the two countries.

 

 


Mauritius and Kenya agree to abolish Double Taxation!


Strategically located in the Indian Ocean at the crossroad of international investments, Mauritius has throughout the last decade forged a strong reputation as a premier international financial centre. Although it is already known as the gateway for structuring investments into India, its agreement to avoid double taxation with 13 African countries namely Botswana, Lesotho, Madagascar, Mozambique, Namibia, Rwanda, Senegal, Seychelles, South Africa, Swaziland, Tunisia, Uganda and Zimbabwe is a testimony that it is well on course to become the undisputed investment gateway of Africa. This position has recently been strengthened on Monday, May 7, 2012, when Xavier Luc Duval, Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Finance of Mauritius and Njer Jithae Robinson, his Kenyan counterpart, signed two conventions which mark a turning point in trade between these two countries.  The first provides for the elimination of double taxation regime commonly known as the Double Taxation Agreement Treaty between the two countries. The second is a commitment to the promotion and protection of investments in both countries. 

Such agreement not only promotes investment between the two countries but it makes Kenya the fourteenth African country with which Mauritius signed a Double Taxation Agreement Treaty. This could not come at a better time as it slammed those who make us believe that the economy is in a compromising situation. To quote, Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Finance of Mauritius, Xavier-Luc Duval “the future is Africa and that the government is stepping up initiatives for Mauritius as a financial services centre of international reputation plays a major role in developing a primer on the dark continent.” 

The DTA between the two countries will become effective after the completion of the procedures required by law for entering into force of the DTA by each of Kenya and Mauritius. In Kenya’s case, section 41 of the Income Tax Act requires that a legal notice is published by the Minister of Finance in this regard. The publication of the notice is expected imminently. 

In Kenya the provisions of the DTA will apply after 1st January next following the date upon which the DTA enters into force, and therefore if the completion of procedures is finalised during 2012 the DTA could become effective as from 1 January 2013.

 


Axis Fiduciary Ltd participated in the recent STEP South Africa Conference at the Sandton Conference Centre, Johannesburg on the 28th and 29th of May 2012!


Axis Fiduciary Ltd participated in the recent STEP South Africa Conference at the Sandton Conference Centre, Johannesburg on the 28th and 29th of May 2012. The conference focused on the South African’s system of trust law and also covered two important Southern African off shore financial centres, as well as other areas of interest such as how off shore trusts affect South Africans and South Africa’s s foreign exchange control system. Finally, the conference explored the latest issues of interest from the offshore world. 

In addition to being a Co-Sponsor of the Conference and having an Exhibition stand at the Conference, the Managing Director of Axis, Assad Abdullatiff was also a speaker at the conference where he was on two panels, namely (a) Global Trust Case Update and (b) Foundations. 

The presence of Axis at the Conference affirmed further the position of Axis as a provider of fiduciary services of first choice.

 






Article on Foundations appeared in the Taxmann by Assad Abdullatiff


We are delighted to share with you an article written by our Managing Director, Assad Abdullatiff, who has contributed extensively to the new Foundations Act. The article was published in Taxmann which is a leading provider of unique updated information on Indian taxation, International taxation, Tax laws, Acts and legal solutions.

Please feel free to let us know if you wish to have any further information on this new product and how it may be of use to you.



Please click here for a copy of the article.


The Mauritian Parliament adopts the Foundation Act without amendments!


We are delighted to inform you that on 05 June 2012, the Mauritius Parliament passed the Foundations Act which aims at allowing for the setting-up of Private Foundations in Mauritius. As you are aware, Mauritius is already known and trusted as the prime gateway for the structuring of investments into India and Africa. Leveraging on its fiscal and non-fiscal advantages and innovative and forward looking Trust Law, the jurisdiction has also grown in the past years to become a leading jurisdiction for private client services in the region. The enactment of a Foundations Act will further promote Mauritius as a platform for wealth management services, succession and estate planning. Please feel free to let us know if you wish to have any further information on this new product and how it may be of use to you.





Please click here for a copy of the Foundation Bill.


Axis participated in the recent Private Client Wealth Forum India conference in January 2012.


Axis Fiduciary Ltd participated in the recent Private Client Wealth Forum India conference, produced by IBC Conferences at the Four Seasons Hotel Mumbai on the 17th and 18th of January 2012. The conference focused on the key skills critical in both onshore and offshore estate planning in India with 30+ international speakers including Lord Meghnad Desai and Peter Beckingham, British Deputy High Commissioner, Mumbai. In addition to being a Co-Sponsor of the Conference and having an Exhibition stand at the Conference, the Managing Director of Axis, Assad Abdullatiff was also a speaker at the conference where he was on two panels, namely (a) Double Tax Treaties for India and (b) Planning for the International Indian Family. The presence of Axis at the Conference affirmed further the position of Axis as a provider of fiduciary services of first choice.


Axis article appeared in the Global Business Magazine


The Magazine is distributed to leading Business Individuals, Investors and Professional Advisers from a multitude of disciplines, business activities and sectors with a readership of around 60,000 + predominantly in North America, Europe, Australasia, South America, the Middle East and Africa.

Please refer to Resources/Articles/Axis Article+ advert-GBM 2012-01 8 for more information on the Article.


Budget Highlights 2012!!


Have a look at the pdf document under Resources/Laws & Regulations for information on the salient features of the newly announced budget


ADMISSION TO THE MAURITIUS INSTITUTE OF DIRECTORS (MIOD)!!!


Mr Reaz Noormamode (Head of Take on/Facilitation Department) and Mrs Nigaar Abubaker-Esmael (Company Secretary) have recently been admitted as members of the Mauritius Institute of Directors ( MIOD).

The MIOD as a premier director organisation in the country, undertakes to raise the level of professionalism of its members by responding, at all times, to their needs in terms of training, sharing of knowledge, advice, communication and networking (locally, regionally and internationally).

In addition, it aspires to improve corporate governance practices, and to promote the ethical conduct of business and public affairs, to enhance productivity and efficiency in companies for the benefit of all stakeholders


SOUTH AFRICAN LAW FIRM WEBBER WENTZEL JOINS ALN AS FROM 1 JAN 2012!!!!!


Axis works closely with BLC Chambers, a leading Mauritian law chambers
specializing in the areas of corporate law, project and trade finance, banking,
tax, real estate, capital markets, collective investment schemes and
cross-border transactions.

BLC Chambers is a member of the Africa Legal Network (ALN) and through BLC, Axis can extend its international network of clients and tap new markets as well as being accessible to a wider range of clients.

With the introduction of Webber Wentzel, Axis now extends its regional reach in South Africa!!

Below is the joint ALN and WW news release:

1st August 2011
Webber Wentzel to Join ALN
ALN, Africa’s largest and most integrated law firm group, and Webber Wentzel, recently named Who’s Who Legal’s 2011 South African law firm of the year, announced today that Webber Wentzel will join ALN on January 1st 2012.
Established eight years ago, ALN\'s members currently include leading law firms in Botswana, Burundi, Ethiopia, Kenya, Mauritius, Mozambique, Rwanda, Tanzania, Uganda and Zambia. With the admission of Webber Wentzel, the group will now cover 11 African countries, and consist of over 520 lawyers in 13 cities. This will uniquely position ALN to respond to the growing need for on-the-ground legal experience and know-how in providing complex, cross-border advisory services on the continent.
David Lancaster, Senior Partner at Webber Wentzel, confirmed that joining ALN was a key step in the firm\'s strategic plan. \"We are delighted to be joining ALN.We want to be able to help our clients wherever they do business in Africa. Our work outside South Africa is becoming a much bigger part of what we do as the economies of our continent develop and provide many and varied opportunities for investment and growth. This is where our clients are, so this is where we need to be\".
All firms in ALN are equal members with no lead or \"parent\" international firm. ALN has a centrally managed business support team that provides administrative resources and coordinates training, quality audits, and staff secondments between member firms to deepen relationships and further integration in the group. The firms are all ranked within the top tier in their own markets.
Roddy McKean, Head of the Africa Group at Webber Wentzel, added: \"Joining ALN is a response to the needs of our clients for an integrated and seamless cross-border offering for their work in Africa. The tie-up with ALN effectively formalises how we have been operating over the past few years. Our strategy has always been to cultivate collaborative relationships with the strongest commercial law firms across the African Continent and to combine our respective practice area expertise, legal and language skills, and industry knowledge with on-the-ground experience. The ALN firms are all firms that we have known for a number of years and with whom we partner regularly on projects\".
John Miles, Chairman of the ALN Board, said that \"The ALN group is a firmly established organization that provides effective, efficient, legally-sound, cross-border business advice. The addition of Webber Wentzel comes at a pivotal time as the group responds to exciting growth opportunities across Africa. We will be looking to expand the group into new markets in coming months. Cross-border practice groups focusing on key industry sectors and practice areas are being established across the network to share market intelligence, legal know-how and best practice. Our goal is to create a truly integrated pan-African service committed to helping clients achieve their business objectives.The addition of Webber Wentzel is a significant step to achieving that goal”
Ends

Notes to editors:
1. ALN’s member firms are all recognised as leading law firms in their respective jurisdictions:
Kenya (Anjarwalla & Khanna), Botswana (Collins Newman & Co), Burundi (A & JN Mabushi), Ethiopia (Teshome Gabre-Mariam Bokan), Mauritius (BLC Chambers), Mozambique (Fernanda Lopes & Associados-Advogados), Rwanda (Kamanzi Ntaganira & Associates), Tanzania (ADEPT Chambers), Uganda (MMAKS Advocates) and Zambia (Musa Dudhia & Company) with associated offices in Lisbon (Fernanda Lopes) and Dubai (Anjarwalla Collins & Haidermota).

The Chairman of ALN board is John Miles, formerly a partner of Denton Wilde Sapte, and the US firm Hunton & Williams, both in London. Miles is a senior international arbitration lawyer with over 35 years\' experience in Africa and elsewhere.

For more information visit www.africalegalnetwork.com

2. Webber Wentzel is one of the leading corporate law firms on the African Continent with a significant international practice. The firm has offices in Johannesburg and Cape Town, and has over 360 lawyers (some 145 are partners) in a variety of legal disciplines.
Webber Wentzel is a full service corporate law firm specialising in a wide variety of practice areas and industry sectors, including: media and broadcasting; IT and intellectual property, electronic business and telecommunications; privatisations, private equity, mergers and acquisitions; capital markets; financial services; banking and finance; project finance; natural resources, energy, public law; real estate; employment law and industrial relations; health and safety; pharmaceuticals, international dispute resolution; tax, competition law; shipping, aviation and transportation; international trade and insurance.

For more information visit www.webberwentzel.com

ISSUED BY: ALN Secretariat
+254 (20)3742 614/5
ON BEHALF OF: ALN and Webber Wentzel

For further information please contact:
John Miles
Chairman ALN
Mob: +254 716 447 343 or +254 20 3742 614
jmm@africalegalnetwork.com

David Lancaster
Senior Partner, Webber Wentzel
Tel: +27 11 530 5251

Roddy McKean
Head of the Africa Group, Webber Wentzel
Tel: +27 11 530 5289


Article (Jan 2011) by Axis!! in Lawyer Monthly Magazine


Please refer to Articles under Resources to see Axis contribution in Lawyer Monthly magazine!!

The monthly magazine covers relevant debates, global issues and the latest legislative updates, keeping its audience well informed on tax law, IP law, corporate immigration, ADR, employment law, cross-border, banking and finance, mining, corporate governance, real estate and many more.


GBC1s may now conduct business in Mauritius


The Finance (Miscellaneous Provisions) Act 2010 was adopted on 17th December 2010 to implement a number of measures announced in the recent budget exercise, including the amendments to the Financial Services Act 2007 (FSA) to allow companies holding Category 1 Global Business Licences (GBC1s) to conduct business in Mauritius. The proposition is that with respect to income from business in Mauritius, GBC1s would be taxed at par with local companies (currently 15% of chargeable income).

The term “Global Business”, and its predecessor “Offshore Business Activity” created a business concept based on the use of Mauritius as a platform for foreign investment but without actually doing business in the territory. This definition provided the rationale for justifying automatic tax credits on the assumption that such companies would, as a matter of course, suffer foreign tax rather than local tax. Lack of Mauritius presence also underpins the various flexibilities, derogations and relaxations afforded to GBC1s mainly relating to corporate formalities, the taking of security, competition laws and disclosure of information.

Offshore skeptics have been critical of the so-called paradox of Global Business in that GBC1s need to show substance in Mauritius to justify treaty entitlements while not being allowed to conduct business on the territory itself. The “New Conceptual Approach to Global Business” circular letter issued by the Financial Services Commission (FSC) following the enactment of the FSA gave some dispensations for incidental business and support services in Mauritius, provided the “ultimate purpose” was to conduct business outside Mauritius. The parameters of these dispensations were a matter of regulatory discretion and hence, notoriously uncertain.

The 2010 amendments, once proclaimed, will allow GBL1 companies to conduct any business in Mauritius, deal with Mauritius residents and hold shares in Mauritius entities. As far as one can see, this opening is not limited by the “incidental business” or “ultimate purpose” test; although some consequential amendments to legislation and statements of practice would be required to factor in the presence of GBC1s as a domestic market players. For the time being, the Finance Act provides for changes to be brought to the main tax legislation to broadly reflect the principle that GBC1s should expect to be taxed at par with local companies with respect to domestic source income.

However, Global Business is evidently not only a revenue concern. The Finance Act 2010 amendments go to its defining characteristics and these will undoubtedly have repercussions on the interpretation of various other legislation and practices. Efforts will need to go into either making the corresponding changes, or adopting a purposive interpretation in order not to create any local market imbalance by the presence of Global Business players in the domestic field, while not frustrating the end objective of these changes. Proclamation of the Finance Act 2010 is expected sometime in March 2011.

Please contact Axis directly for more information concerning the new provisions.


Amendment of Listing Rules to allow for listing for Global Funds and other types of investment funds


The Stock Exchange of Mauritius Ltd (SEM), published amendments to its Listing Rules last week allowing for the listing of Global Schemes (i.e. funds holding a global business licence) and the other types of funds which may be authorised by the Mauritius Financial Services Commission (FSC) under the Securities Act 2005 and the related regulations.

Prior to these amendments, the Listing Rules catered only for investment companies, unit trusts and authorised mutual funds as these were the only legal forms of investment funds recognised under Mauritian law. The advent of the Securities (Collectives Investment Schemes and Closed End Fund) Regulations 2008 paved the way for customized and innovative vehicles to be set up in Mauritius, including offshore fund vehicles, private equity funds, umbrella structures and funds tailored specifically for high net worth individuals and sophisticated investors.

SEM follows suit with the amendments to the Listing Rules allowing \"Global Schemes and other Specialist Funds\" to apply for listing on the SEM. The Rules have been widened to factor in the specificities of fund structures whose composition, mode of operation and objectives may be different from the classic mutual fund.

Ongoing listing and disclosure requirements under the Rules have also been aligned with the requirements imposed on investment funds by the Securities Act.

Listing on a regionally and internationally accredited stock exchange brings the comfort of adherence to international standards of transparency, disclosure and compliance, which fund professionals and investors are increasingly wary of. More importantly, it also demonstrates greater nexus and substance in the jurisdiction which will undoubtedly add weight to the commercial presence of funds for domiciliation purposes in Mauritius.

Please contact Axis directly for more information concerning the new SEM regulations