1 Legislative and regulatory framework
1.1 In broad terms, which legislative and regulatory provisions govern alternative investment funds in your jurisdiction?
Alternative investment funds (AIFs) in Mauritius are governed by:
- the Securities Act 2005 and associated regulations, and in particular the Securities (Collective Investment Schemes and Closed-end Funds) Regulations 2008; and
- the Financial Services Act 2007.
In addition, depending on the structure of the AIF, the main legislative provisions that will govern it are as follows:
- the Companies Act 2001, where the AIF is structured as a company;
- the Protected Cell Companies Act 1999, where the AIF is structured as a protected cell company;
- the Limited Partnership Act 2001, where the AIF is structured as a limited partnership; or
- the Trusts Act 2001, where the AIF is structured as a trust (the establishment of an AIF through a trust structure is rare).
1.2 Do any special regimes or provisions apply to specific types of alternative investment funds?
See question 2.1, which sets out the different categories of AIFs. Certain categories of AIFs benefit from a light regulatory regime and are therefore exempt from most of the provisions of the Securities (Collective Investment Schemes and Closed-end Funds) Regulations 2008. There are no special regimes that specifically govern, for example, hedge funds compared to private equity funds.
1.3 Do the legislative and regulatory provisions governing alternative investment funds have extra-territorial reach?
The Financial Services Commission (FSC) may approve a foreign manager to manage a fund (see question 4.3) or alternatively a Mauritius-regulated collective investment scheme manager to manage a foreign fund. Further, the FSC has the power to recognise a fund established in a foreign jurisdiction to operate in Mauritius (see question 2.8).
1.4 Are any bilateral, multilateral or supranational instruments in effect in your jurisdiction of relevance to alternative investment funds?
Mauritius has implemented the US Foreign Account Tax Compliance Act and the Common Reporting Standard in its domestic law. In addition, Mauritius is signatory to the Base Erosion and Profit Sharing (BEPS) multilateral convention to implement tax treaty-related measures to prevent BEPS (MLI). This covers 44 tax treaties to which Mauritius is a party. Mauritius has already deposited its instrument of ratification of the MLI with the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development and the MLI is effective for Mauritius since 1 February 2020.
As a result, changes have been made to the substance requirements required in respect of funds and fund managers, among others.
1.5 Which bodies are responsible for regulating alternative investment funds in your jurisdiction? What powers do they have?
The FSC is responsible for regulating AIFs in Mauritius. The FSC has wide-ranging powers, including the following:
- to make rules, set standards and provide guidelines;
- to give directions to any person to ensure compliance with relevant laws, guidelines or licensing conditions;
- to issue a private warning;
- to issue a public censure;
- to disqualify a licensee from holding a licence or a licence of a specified kind for a specified period;
- to disqualify an officer from a specified office or position in a licensee for a specified period;
- to impose administrative penalties; and
- to revoke licences.
The FSC also has the power to grant exemptions or partial exemptions from compliance with any FSC rules and guidelines, subject to such conditions as it may impose.
1.6 To what extent do the regulators cooperate with their counterparts in other jurisdictions?
The FSC cooperates with the regulators of other jurisdictions and has signed memoranda of understanding (MOUs) with several countries in this regard. The MOUs aim to:
- consolidate supervision of cross-border operations of financial institutions;
- define mechanisms to share information in accordance with international standards; and
- reinforce collaboration among institutions in the fight against crime, money laundering and terrorist financing.
Regulators in other jurisdictions with which the FSC has MOUs in place include:
- the UK Financial Conduct Authority;
- the South African Financial Services Board;
- the Securities and Exchange Board of India;
- the Dubai Financial Services Authority; and
- foreign counterparts in several African countries.
2 Form and structure
2.1 What types of alternative investment funds are typically found in your jurisdiction?
The two main types of alternative investment funds (AIFs) in Mauritius are collective investment schemes (CISs) and closed-end funds (CEFs).
To qualify as a CIS, the following criteria must be met:
- The sole purpose of the fund is the collective investment of funds in a portfolio of securities, or other financial assets, real property or non-financial assets, as may be approved by the Financial Services Commission (FSC);
- The operation of the fund is based on the principle of diversification of risk;
- The fund is obliged, on the request of the holder of securities in the fund, to redeem them at their net asset value (less commission or fees); and
- Investors do not have day-to-day control over the management of the fund.
A CEF is an arrangement or a scheme, other than a CIS, whose object is to invest funds in a portfolio of securities or in other financial or non-financial assets, or real property, as may be approved by the FSC.
Based on figures from the FSC (published October 2019), as at 31 December 2018, 991 AIFs with a global business licence were operating in Mauritius, of which 469 were CISs and 522 CEFs.
CISs and CEFs can be retail funds or non-retail funds; however, it is quite rare to have CEFs that are retail funds.
The following sub-categories are common for the use of CISs and CEFs in Mauritius:
- Professional CISs (PCISs): To be sub-categorised as a PCIS, a fund may be either a CIS or a CEF, but is open only to sophisticated investors (this is a limited definition, unlike in certain other jurisdictions) or to private placements.
- Expert funds: To be sub-categorised as an expert fund, the fund must be a CIS and should be open only to:
- investors who make an initial investment, for their own account, of no less than $100,000; or
- sophisticated investors. A ‘sophisticated investor' is an investor that meets the definition set out in the Securities Act 2005 or any similarly defined investor in any other securities legislation (which makes the category of sophisticated investor her wider than that under the PCIS regime).
These sub-categories benefit from a light regulatory approach, given they are targeted at sophisticated institutional investors or high-net worth individuals.
2.2 How are these alternative investment funds typically structured?
AIFs are typically structured as a company (including a protected cell company) or a limited partnership. It is possible to structure an AIF as a trust, although this is rare in practice.
2.3 What are the advantages and disadvantages of these different types of structures?
With respect to companies, the Mauritius Companies Act is flexible, allowing for ease of operation while providing statutory protection for shareholders (including minority shareholders). Classes of shares may be issued giving different rights to different categories of investors. Directors have statutory duties, including a duty to act in good faith and in the best interests of the company. Certain matters also require the consent of the shareholders, thus offering a degree of protection set out in the law to investors.
In a limited partnership, the general partner can easily manage the structure under the terms set out in the partnership agreement. Unlike the Companies Act, which provides more extensive statutory protection, greater flexibility is afforded to the partners under the Limited Partnership Act to decide on the operation of the structure; and protections are negotiated and contractually embedded in the limited partnership agreement itself. This has the benefit of allowing the limited partnership to be managed much more flexibly through the general partner (with a delegation to the CIS manager). It is also relatively easy to accommodate the specific requirements of individual investors (compared to a company, where shareholders of the same class must be treated equally, making it cumbersome and inefficient to deal with different share classes in the structure). While in a company, certain decisions must be made by the board, in a limited partnership there is no such restriction: the general partner can make all decisions allowed under the limited partnership agreement. This facilitates quick and efficient decision making in the operation of the limited partnership. A limited partnership structure is also tax transparent (unless the partners, in the case of a limited partnership holding a global business licence, opt for it to be taxable in Mauritius).
A limited partnership structure is also more practical for returning capital or profits to investors since the provisions of the Companies Act relating to solvency test, buy-back, redemption of shares and requirement for accumulated profits do not apply.
2.4 What are the most widely used alternative investment funds structures used in your jurisdiction?
The company structure is most widely used. However, since the introduction of the Limited Partnership Act in 2011, we are gradually seeing a shift towards the use of limited partnership structures in respect of closed-end funds, especially those housing US investors and those not necessarily wishing to have a tax-resident fund in Mauritius.
2.5 Is there a preferred alternative fund structure for particular investment strategies (ie, hedge fund/private credit/private equity)?
The limited partnership is a tried and tested structure in the private equity space. Private equity fund managers and investors are typically more comfortable and familiar with the limited partnership, which is the structure of choice for investors and fund managers in many jurisdictions in respect of private equity funds.
Prior to the introduction of the Limited Partnership Act in 2011, private equity funds were structured through corporate vehicles. In recent years, as local service providers have become more familiar and investors have gained greater confidence in the limited partnership structure in Mauritius, we have been seen a shift towards the limited partnership structure.
With regard to hedge funds, which are open-ended, the choice remains to adopt the company structure where redeemable shares are issued to investors, although in rare cases limited partnership structures have in practice been used for hedge funds business.
2.6 Are alternative investment funds required to have a local administrator appointed?
There is no requirement to have a local administrator. A CIS manager can perform administrative services. However, if the fund or the CIS manager wishes to engage another party to perform administrative services, that party must obtain a licence as a CIS administrator.
‘Administrator services' are services with respect to the operations and administrative affairs of a CIS, including:
- accounting, valuation and reporting services; and
- the provision of the principal office of a CIS.
They do not include
- the provision of a registered office to a CIS, where the usual corporate, secretarial and related services are provided;
- the maintenance of any register of shareholders or participants, or the registration and payment of fees; and
- the provision of investment advice or investment management or trading execution services.
In practice, given that it is a requirement for all entities holding a global business licence to engage a ‘management company' in Mauritius, the management company will also typically provide administrative services to the AIF.
2.7 Are alternative investment funds required to appoint a local custodian to hold assets? If yes, what legal protections are in place to protect the alternative investment fund's assets?
Except in respect of a global scheme (where a foreign custodian may be appointed, subject to the approval of the FSC), a local custodian must be appointed in respect of a CIS (open-ended fund). The local custodian must be a bank or a trust company that is a subsidiary of a bank. It must also be independent from the CIS manager.
2.8 Is it possible for an alternative investment fund to redomicile to your jurisdiction? If yes, what considerations are required and what are the steps involved?
It is possible for an AIF to redomicile to Mauritius. The AIF must file an application with the registrar of companies/limited partnerships (depending on its structure) and the FSC.
For an AIF incorporated as a company, the AIF must have a place of business in Mauritius or carry out business in Mauritius. It must file with the registrar of companies, among other things:
- an authenticated copy of the certificate of its incorporation or registration in its place of incorporation or origin;
- a duly authenticated copy of its constitution, charter, articles or other instrument constituting or defining its constitution; and
- notice of its registered office details in Mauritius.
It cannot commence business unless the name of the AIF is available at the registrar.
An AIF incorporated as a limited partnership may apply to the registrar to register as, and continue as, a limited partnership in Mauritius. In order to register as a limited partnership in Mauritius, it would need, among other things, to:
- be authorised as a limited partnership in the country where it is incorporated;
- obtain the consent of a majority of the general partners to register the limited partnership in Mauritius;
- be solvent immediately after becoming registered in Mauritius; and
- submit to the registrar such document or information as the registrar may require.
Recognition may be subject to such conditions that the FSC considers necessary or desirable for the protection of participants in the scheme. To be recognised, the CIS must provide documentary evidence of its constitution, establishment and good standing in the relevant jurisdiction, including complete details of the authoritative body with regulatory and supervisory functions in the jurisdiction in which the CIS is established. The CIS must also meet such requirements of the Securities (Collective Investment Schemes and Closed-end Funds) Regulations 2008 as the FSC considers applicable.
3.1 Must alternative investment funds be authorised or licensed in your jurisdiction?
Alternative investment funds (AIFs) must be authorised/licensed by the Financial Services Commission (FSC).
3.2 If so, what criteria must be satisfied to obtain authorisation? Do any restrictions apply in this regard?
AIFs must obtain the following licences/authorisations from the FSC:
- a global business corporation licence (for a fund that conducts business principally outside Mauritius and where the majority of shares, voting rights or legal or beneficial interests are held by foreigner investors);
- a collective investment scheme (CIS) licence or closed-end fund (CEF) licence; and
- authorisation to operate as an expert fund, professional collective investment scheme (either open or closed ended) or specialised collective investment scheme. If an AIF set up as a company wishes to self-manage the AIF, it will also require authorisation from the FSC.
See question 2.1 as to the definition of the CIS licence and CEF licence and the common categories of AIFs.
3.3 What is the process for obtaining authorisation of alternative investment funds and how long does this usually take?
An application must be lodged to register the company/limited partnership with the registrar of companies or the registrar of limited partnerships. The application must be lodged concurrently with an application to the FSC to obtain a global business corporation licence and authorisation to operate as a fund. Applications must be submitted through a management company in Mauritius, which must be appointed by the fund manager (the management company will then act as the local ‘administrator' of the entity in Mauritius).
The timeframe for obtaining authorisation from the FSC is six to eight weeks. During the application process, the FSC may come back to the management company with queries on the application.
4 Management and advisory relationships
4.1 How are alternative investment fund managers and advisers typically structured in your jurisdiction?
It is a requirement for the collective investment scheme (CIS) manager to be a body corporate. If an investment adviser is appointed, it is again typically a corporate vehicle.
4.2 What are the advantages and disadvantages of these different types of structures?
See question 4.1; it is a requirement for the CIS manager to be a body corporate and investment advisers are also typically body corporates.
4.3 Must alternative investment fund managers be authorised or licensed in your jurisdiction?
Yes, alternative investment fund (AIF) managers must be authorised or licensed in Mauritius. The Financial Services Commission (FSC) may approve a foreign manager to manage an AIF licensed in Mauritius, provided that it is licensed by a foreign regulator in a jurisdiction with comparable regulations as Mauritius for investor protection.
4.4 If so, what criteria must be satisfied to obtain authorisation? Do any restrictions apply in this regard?
In order to be licensed, a CIS manager must:
- be a body corporate (as opposed to a partnership or similar);
- have a minimum unimpaired capital of MUR 1million or equivalent;
- have in place a code of ethics and conduct which is binding on its officers, advisers, managers and employees, and ensure that they are fit and proper to manage a CIS; and
- subscribe to an insurance policy to include coverage of fraud and professional breaches. This must be submitted to the FSC within 10 business days of obtaining the licence.
4.5 What is the process for obtaining authorisation and how long does this usually take?
The management company will lodge the application for registration with the registrar of companies concurrently with the application for a global business corporation licence and the application to be licensed as a CIS manager.
The process takes around four to eight weeks.
4.6 What other requirements or restrictions apply to alternative investment fund managers and advisers in your jurisdiction?
See question 4.4. In addition, the CIS manager and its officers have certain prescribed duties, including:
- exercising the degree of care and diligence that would be reasonably expected of a person in that position;
- acting in the best interests of the participants in the CIS and, where there is a conflict between the interests of the participants and their own interests, giving priority to the participants' interests; and
- treating participants in the same class equally.
4.7 Can an alternative investment fund manager impose restrictions on the issue, redemption or transfer of interests in the funds under management?
Yes, provided these are set out in the documents (ie, the shareholders' agreement/limited partnership agreement/constitution/subscription agreement, as applicable) relating to the fund. For a CIS, investors must be able to redeem their interest on request; however, a short initial lock-in period is generally allowed by the FSC in practice.
4.8 Are there any requirements regarding the ownership of alternative investment fund managers? If so, please provide details.
There are no requirements for local ownership. All AIF managers may be owned by foreign investors.
4.9 Can alternative investment fund managers delegate to third-party investment managers or investment advisers? If yes, please provide details of any specific requirements.
Certain matters may be delegated; see question 2.6.
4.10 Can alternative investment fund manager provide investment management services to clients other than alternative investment funds? If yes, do any additional requirements apply?
Generally no. Unless authorised by the FSC, the CIS manager must not engage in any activity other than the management of CISs (or private pension schemes under the Private Pensions Schemes Act). If a CIS manager is considering providing services to another AIF, it should seek appropriate approval from the FSC, which in turn would require information such as the private placement memorandum of the AIF and the investment management agreement to be put in place, as well as understanding whether the AIF is regulated by a specific securities regulator, if not in Mauritius.
5.1 Is the marketing of alternative investment funds subject to authorisation in your jurisdiction?
Yes, alternative investment funds (AIFs) may be marketed by an intermediary which is licensed by the Financial Services Commission (FSC) or by the AIF manager through the prospectus (the AIF manager must comply with the prospectus requirements before marketing, and the prospectus must be registered with the FSC).
5.2 If so, what criteria must be satisfied to obtain authorisation? Do any restrictions apply in this regard?
The criteria will depend on the type of intermediary (eg, investment dealer; investment adviser).
5.3 What is the process for obtaining authorisation and how long does this usually take?
For a licensed local intermediary, an application must be submitted to the FSC. The process takes four to eight weeks.
5.4 To whom can alternative investment funds be marketed?
This will depend on the type of fund. Certain categories of funds can be marketed to specific investors only.
An expert fund can be offered only to expert investors (see question 2.1).
A professional CIS can be marketed only to sophisticated investors or where investors invest by way of private placement. A private placement, in respect of a professional CIS (excluding a closed-end fund which is not a reporting issuer), is one where the subscription amount is amount is at least $200,000 and where each person subscribes or purchases for his or her own account, and no publicity is made by the person making the offer.
5.5 What are the content criteria that marketing materials for alternative investment funds must satisfy?
The Guidelines for Advertising and Marketing of Financial Products issued by the FSC in October 2014 set out illustrative minimum standards that should be followed in respect of the marketing of financial products (including securities of AIFs). It sets out general principles which should be followed, including the use of appropriate words to avoid misleading material and appropriate risk warnings. In addition, the prospectus should comply with the relevant requirements set out in the legislation (this will depend on the type of fund being set up).
5.6 What other requirements or restrictions apply to marketing materials for alternative investment funds?
Other restrictions depend on the type of fund.
CISs that do not benefit from exemptions: A CIS offering shares in Mauritius must not issue, use or cause to be issued or used for any purpose any advertisement for or in connection with the CIS, unless a copy of the advertisement is forwarded to the FSC no later than five working days prior to the date of first issue or use. If the FSC is not satisfied with the advertisement, the FSC shall inform the CIS and request it to withdraw or amend the advertisement.
CIS managers of non-exempt CISs and closed-end funds: A CIS manager must not issue to the public or participate in or knowingly allow its name to be used in respect of any advertisement, sales literature or correspondence, or issue or send any advertisement, sales literature or correspondence in connection with its business which:
- contains any untrue statement or omission of a material fact, or is otherwise false or misleading;
- contains an unjustified promise of specific results;
- uses unrepresentative statistics to suggest unwarranted or exaggerated conclusions, or fails to identify the material assumptions made in arriving at these conclusions;
- contains any opinion or forecast of future events which is not clearly identified as such;
- fails to fairly present the potential risks to the participant; or
- is detrimental to the interests of the public.
A copy of any advertisement or sales literature proposed to be issued by a CIS manager that holds a licence issued by the FSC must be submitted to the FSC before it is issued.
5.7 Can alternative fund managers from other jurisdictions market alternative investment funds in your jurisdiction without authorisation?
FSC authorisation is required; or alternatively, the services of a licensed local intermediary will be required.
5.8 Is the appointment of local marketing entities required in your jurisdiction?
Assuming that the AIF can be marketed to the public, the appointment of a locally licensed intermediary is required to market the AIF to the public in Mauritius.
5.9 Is it possible to market alternative investment funds to retail investors in your jurisdiction? If so, are there specific requirements?
Yes, in order to market to retail investors, the AIF cannot benefit from the lighter regulatory regimes afforded to the expert fund regime or the professional CIS regimes. Compliance with most of the provisions of the Securities (Collective Investment Schemes and Closed-end Funds) Regulations 2008 will be required, including the required prospectus requirements under the Securities Act and associated regulations.
6 Investment process
6.1 Do any investment or borrowing restrictions apply to the portfolios of alternative investment funds?
Closed-end funds have no investment or borrowing restrictions.
Collective investment schemes (CIS) have investment restrictions; for example, they may not:
- purchase a security, other than a debt security issued by the government of Mauritius or the government of any other country, if immediately after the purchase, more than 5% of its net assets, taken at market value at the time of purchase, would be invested in securities of that issuer;
- purchase and hold more than 10% of a class of securities of that issuer;
- purchase real estate;
- obtain a mortgage;
- purchase a security for the purpose of exercising control or management of the issuer;
- purchase an illiquid asset if, immediately after the purchase, more than 10% of the net assets of the CIS would consist of illiquid assets;
- subscribe to securities offered by a company in formation;
- engage in the business of underwriting or marketing securities of any other issuer;
- purchase or sell derivatives, except within the limits established by the Financial Services Commission (FSC) or in the case of a specialised CIS authorised by the FSC; or
- purchase or sell a physical commodity, including precious metals, except in the case of a specialised CIS authorised by the FSC.
The above restrictions may be lifted on application to the FSC, provided that:
- the CIS provides sufficient justification to depart from the regulations; and
- the prospectus of the CIS sets out, among other things:
- the investment rules that the CIS will follow; and
- risk warnings for the nature of the risks being undertaken (eg, derivative risks).
6.2 Are there any specific legal or regulatory requirements regarding investments in particular assets?
There is a specialised CIS regime. A specialised CIS is one that invests in real estate, derivatives, commodities (including physical commodities/precious metals) or any other product authorised by the FSC.
The FSC will determine:
- which of the regulations will apply;
- whether specific rules should be imposed; and
- the conditions that will apply to the specialised CIS.
7 Reporting, governance and risk management
7.1 What key disclosure requirements apply to alternative investment funds in your jurisdiction?
Alternative investment funds (AIFs) must file their offering document with the Financial Services Commission (FSC). The content of this document will vary depending on the type and category of the AIF. The offering document of a retail collective investment scheme (CIS) must contain all disclosure requirements set out in the legislation; while minimal requirements apply to an expert fund/professional CIS.
If the AIF is classed as a reporting issuer (eg, if the fund has 100 shareholders or more), the disclosure requirements include a requirement to issue a press release in the event of a material change in the affairs of a reporting issuer that is likely to have a significant influence on the value or market price of its securities.
7.2 What key reporting requirements apply to alternative investment funds in your jurisdiction?
A CIS manager must report to the FSC as soon as practicable once it becomes aware of any breach of:
- the Securities Act, any regulations under the act or any rules of the FSC; or
- the CIS's constitutive documents, where this has had, or is likely to have, a materially adverse effect on the interests of participants.
7.3 What key governance requirements apply to alternative investment funds in your jurisdiction?
AIFs must comply with the National Code of Corporate Governance, which sets out corporate governance principles with regard to:
- governance structure;
- the structure of the board and committees;
- director appointment procedures;
- directors' duties, remuneration and performance;
- risk governance and internal control;
- reporting and integrity;
- audits; and
- relations with shareholders and other key stakeholders.
Expert funds and professional CISs that are not reporting issuers are exempt from the requirement to comply with the code. However, they should establish appropriate corporate governance measures where required by their licensing conditions. In practice, these funds must have a sufficient level of corporate governance in order to meet their duties to investors and the FSC.
7.4 What key risk management requirements apply to alternative investment funds in your jurisdiction?
A CIS must follow certain prudential and conduct of business rules, including:
- having a code of ethics and conduct that is binding on its officers, managers and employees; and
- ensuring that they are fit and proper to manage the scheme. There must also be documented rules of internal control for the CIS manager and appropriate insurance.
8.1 How are alternative investment funds treated for tax purposes in your jurisdiction?
It depends on the structure of the alternative investment fund (AIF). If the AIF is structured as a company and holds a CIS or closed-end fund licence from the FSC, it will be taxed on its income at a rate of 15%, although it will benefit from an 80% exemption on all its income derived in the course of its business activities.
If the AIF is structured as a partnership, the structure will be tax transparent, unless the partnership chooses to be tax opaque, in which case it will be treated in the same way as a company for tax purposes.
8.2 How are alternative investment fund managers and advisers treated for tax purposes in your jurisdiction?
Income of AIF managers setting up in Mauritius is taxed at a rate of 15%; however, they are eligible for an 80% partial exemption on their income, thus bringing the effective rate to 3%, subject to the AIF manager satisfying substance requirements relating to activity carried out in Mauritius, minimum annual expenditure and minimum employment.
Dividends declared by Mauritius resident entities are tax exempt in Mauritius and as such, no withholding tax on dividend income apply.
8.3 How are alternative investment fund investors treated for tax purposes in your jurisdiction?
Investors should not be taxed purely by reason of their equity investment. There is no withholding tax on dividends in Mauritius and no tax on the redemption or buy-back of their shares or partnership interest. Should the investors invest by way of debt, the tax implications must be looked into on a case-by-case basis.
8.4 What effect do international laws such as the US Foreign Account Tax Compliance Act and international standards such as the Common Reporting Standard have in your jurisdiction?
Mauritius has implemented the US Foreign Account Tax Compliance Act and the Common Reporting Standard into its domestic law. Information sharing with other tax authorities is mandatory, in accordance with the requirements of this legislation.
8.5 What preferred tax strategies are typically adopted in the alternative investment fund context?
The tax strategy must be decided on a case-by-case basis and will depend on the objectives and location of the AIF manager/promoter.
9 Trends and predictions
9.1 How would you describe the alternative investment fund landscape and prevailing trends in your
In October 2019 Mauritius was found to be compliant with the EU Code of Conduct and with the EU Tax Good Governance Principles. In addition to being compliant with the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development, Mauritius is also now on the white list of the European Union. This is likely to boost investments from EU investors and fund managers seeking to structure through Mauritius.
9.2 Are any new legal or regulatory developments anticipated which will impact on alternative investment funds or alternative investment fund managers in your jurisdiction?
The special purpose fund regime is being reviewed. This regime was originally set up to encourage promoters of funds set up in Mauritius to invest in countries that do not have a tax treaty with Mauritius. The special purpose fund regime was aimed at providing tax exemption to special categories of funds, especially those not aiming at obtaining benefits under tax treaties. The special purpose fund regime is now being revamped and a consultation paper has been circulated to industry for comments.
9.3 Do you envisage any particular industry strategy of attracting particular interest in the next 12 months?
Not at this stage.
10 Tips and traps
10.1 What are your top tips for the smooth establishment and management of an alternative investment fund in your jurisdiction, and what specific challenges would you note?
What are your top tips for the smooth establishment and management of an alternative investment fund in your jurisdiction, and what specific challenges would you note?
- Given that the management company is responsible for submitting the application for registration to the Financial Services Commission (FSC) and provide ongoing corporate secretarial reporting services, it is important to choose a good management company. Service and delivery are important.
- Plan early and ensure that all documents required by the FSC are provided. Know-your-customer documents required by the FSC must also be submitted. Submitting all documents required at the start will speed up the registration process.
- A good business plan is essential.
- Ensure that the right structure and documents are in place from the start. This will save costs in the long run and avoid delays incurred by having to obtain new licences or convert entities in the future.
The content of this article is intended to provide a general guide to the subject matter. Specialist advice should be sought about your specific circumstances.