Providing tax-exempt status and enabling entrepreneurs to utilize it for a variety of purposes, authorized companies have become a key to doing business in Mauritius.
Put simply, an authorized company means a body corporate that is controlled and managed outside of Mauritius.
Starting an authorized company in Mauritius comes with fairly obvious appeal. The incorporation process is fast and completely transparent. Not to mention the political stability and a good reputation for the global business of Mauritius.
Keen to get your business going? Read on to find out how to start an Authorized Company in Mauritius.
Table of Contents
1. Overview of Authorized Company in Mauritius
Before investing time and money into your authorized company, you will want to consider its pros and cons and whether it has the potential to be successful.
To help refine your point of view, we list down below some advantages and disadvantages of starting an authorized company in Mauritius:
Some prominent advantages of Mauritius Authorized Company are summarized below:
- Strategic location
Located in the Indian Ocean with preferential access to important continents such as Africa, Australia, and Asia, Mauritius is considered one of the most strategic business growth locations.
By starting an authorized company in Mauritius, you will be able to trade globally and expand business networks with international brands from around the world.
- Business-friendly legislation
Mauritius has been recognized as one of the most trusted international financial centers in the region. The country is well-known for its strong regulatory framework, good governance, and ethics, making it safe for business and investments.
A Mauritius Authorized Company operates under the provisions of the Companies Act 2001 and the Business Facilitation Act 2006, which ensures simplified and smooth operational procedures for doing business.
- Ease of doing business
Mauritius is a considerably good place for doing business with strong international practices and sustainable development policies.
Moreover, the country’s favorable business nature has been acknowledged by global agencies such as the Organisation for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD) and the World Bank (WB).
- High level of anonymity and privacy
The information of an authorized company’s beneficial owners, directors, and shareholders is protected by law and is not publicly accessible.
- Tax exemption
An authorized company is considered a non-resident for tax purposes in Mauritius and is exempted from corporate tax, withholding tax, interest, and royalties, or any capital gains tax.
As there are no obligations to pay taxes, an authorized company may not be eligible for double tax treaties currently in force in Mauritius.
If you’re looking to set up an Authorized Company on a budget, check out our offer of Mauritius company formation – which should help you reduce set-up costs considerably!
Below are some disadvantages of an authorized company in Mauritius, including:
- Fundraising restrictions
The Mauritius authorized company is not allowed to raise capital from the public or conduct any fundraising activities, which may eventually limit the company’s potential.
- Bank account currency
In terms of banking currency, the authorized company is not allowed to operate an account in Mauritian currency.
However, the authorized company may open and maintain an account in foreign currencies with the local banks.
2. Business scope of Authorized Company in Mauritius
Having established what advantages an authorized company may bring, it is also important for you to fully understand its business scope – what it can and cannot do.
2.1. Common activities
An authorized company in Mauritius can be commonly used for:
- Investment and property holding (real estate or other property);
- Trading and consultancy services (non-financial);
- Logistics, etc.
2.2 Restricted activities
An authorized company shall not conduct any business activity specified in the Fourth Schedule which are banking, financial services, providing services for corporations such as registered office facilities, nominee, directorship & secretarial, etc.
Read more about the business scope of Authorized Company, and how it might benefit your business, in our guide to an offshore company in Mauritius.
3. Key elements of Authorized Company in Mauritius
There are several important features of an authorized company you’ll need to take note of and comply with – that is, if you want to avoid any problems.
- Directors & Secretaries
An authorized company should have a minimum of one director, who may be resident or non-resident in Mauritius. The director of an authorized company can be a natural person or a corporate body.
According to the Company Act 2001, an authorized company may or may not appoint a secretary.
An authorized company is required to have at least one shareholder, who can be an individual or a corporate body.
The company shareholders can be of any nationality and are not necessarily required to be a resident of the Republic.
- Registered agents and offices
An authorized company must have a management company as Registered Agent at all times, who must be ordinarily resident in Mauritius and qualified licensed by the FSC (Financial Services Commission).
Similarly, the company is required to maintain a registered office to receive notifications or legal notices from governance authorities.
- Annual general meeting
The authorized company may hold meetings anywhere, even in countries other than Mauritius. The meetings can be attended via telephone or any other electronic means.
- Annual reporting
It is required for authorized companies to prepare and file Financial Summary within 6 months of the financial year-end with the FSC.
Also, an Annual Return of Income needs to be filed with the Mauritius Revenue Authority.
4. Incorporation of Authorized Company in Mauritius
Now we’ve covered the main points you’ll need to know about authorized companies, it’s time to incorporate one on your own.
To successfully incorporate an authorized company in Mauritius, entrepreneurs need to follow the 3 steps below:
Step 1: Apply for reservation of name
The application for the company name’s reservation must be submitted to the Registrar-General Department (Registrar).
The name of an authorized company shall follow the requirements below:
- It should be unique and not be identical to any existing name or a name that has already been reserved by the Registrar;
- It should not contain any misleading or offensive indication or any specific terms without the consent of the Minister; and
- It should end with the abbreviation “Ltd” or “Ltée” that indicates it is a company where the liability of shareholders is limited.
Wonder if your desired name for an Authorized Company is unique? Try our Entity Name Check for free!
Step 2: Prepare Application of Incorporation
An authorized company can be incorporated by sending an Application of Incorporation to the Registrar. The standard application should contain the following information:
- The company’s name and date of incorporation;
- The registered office of the proposed company;
- The registered address as well as the name and address of the company’s registered agent;
- The information of the company’s directors and secretaries. In the case where directors are resident in Mauritius, a memorandum stating the powers of the local Directors shall be filed; and
- Proof that the company conducts business principally outside Mauritius and has its central management and control outside of Mauritius.
Step 3: Receive Registrar’s Certificate
After filing the aforementioned forms and documents, the Commission shall issue a certificate to that effect.
The Commission’s certificate for incorporation consists of information such as company name, registration number, forming date, etc.
Step 4: Apply for authorization
Following the incorporation, the business owners need to apply to the FSC for authorization.
The application for authorization should be compliant with certain requirements as follow:
(1) The application shall be made through the company’s registered agent in form and manner determined by the Commission; and
(2) The application shall be accompanied by information, documents, or application fees that are specified in Commission’s rules.
- An Authorized Company offers multiple advantages in terms of location, business climate, taxation, legislation, and privacy.
- An Authorized Company has a very specific business scope containing allowed and restricted activities.
- Key elements of an Authorized Company include director & secretary; shareholders; registered agents & office; annual general meeting; and annual reporting.
- The incorporation process of Authorized Company can be summarised in 4 steps, via an online or offline application.