Mauritius: The Minister of Financial Services and Good Governance, Mahen Kumar Seeruttun, participated yesterday in a post-budget 2023-24 panel discussion organised by Mauritius Finance, at the Royal Green Wellness Resort, in Réduit, in the presence of several stakeholders.
In his address, Minister Seeruttun highlighted that the objective of the panel discussion was to brainstorm and reflect on Budget 2023-24 presented on Friday, 2 June 2023.
“During the budget speech, the Minister of Finance, Economic Planning and Development stated that the financial services sector is the second largest contributor to our Gross Domestic Product (GDP), and rightly so, as it is a sector that contributes to 13.6 % of the GDP and employs more than 15,000 people,” he pointed out.
According to the Financial Services Minister, this budget was a new impetus to the economic sector and the investor community. “Whilst the previous budgets, in 2021 and 2022, have helped the sector to recover from the impacts of the COVID-19 pandemic rapidly, this budget caters for the next phase of development, which is the growth and sustainability of our financial services sector,” he said.
Furthermore, Seeruttun emphasised that it was the right time for Mauritian operators to leverage their reputation and increase visibility in target markets. In this context, he indicated that this year, some exceptional measures were carefully crafted for the financial services sector, namely:
- Improving the ease of doing business and cost of doing business.
- Reviewing the attractiveness of some of the financial services products.
- Having the right workforce with the required skill.
“Mauritius,” the Minister underscored, “is today ranked 13th in the world for the ease of doing business and, in order to ensure that we remain ahead of the curve, measures to remove the roadblocks, which were perceived as deterrents to investors, were taken in this budget.”
- The abolition of the Solidarity Levy to maintain the attractiveness for highly skilled workers;
- An increase from 80% to 95 % of the partial exemption granted in respect of interest earned by a Collective Investment Scheme or a Closed-End Fund established in Mauritius;
- And in line with the sustainability agenda and to promote the greening of the economy, the extension, to all sustainable projects, of the exemption of interest income derived from bonds to finance renewable energy projects.
In addition, Minister Seeruttun dwelt on some initiatives taken so that Mauritius positioned itself as a wealth management hub.
- The introduction of the Insurance Wrapper;
- The introduction of a new Wealth Manager and Family Officer license in the budget 2023-24 and the extension of the scope of the Variable Capital Companies to allow their use for family offices and wealth management;
- The reduction of the threshold for an Occupation Permit for professionals to Rs 30,000 and the streamlining of the process for the application of the Occupation Permit;
- The opening of the Young Professional Occupation Permit to all fields of study;
- And the increase by Rs 100 million of the budget allocated to the Economic Development Board for the promotion of financial services.
The Minister indicated that having a dedicated budget for promoting the financial services sector would be a game changer as it would support addressing adverse articles on Mauritius International Financial Centre and ensure more visibility in international forums.