Mauritius Foundation

Mauritius Foundation: Ideal Structure for Private Wealth Management

With the Mauritius Foundations Act 2012, Mauritius added Foundations to its list of wealth management structures available to choose from. Well-known for its economic and political stability and dynamic business regime, setting up a Foundation in Mauritius provides many benefits. This article will highlight the features and basics of a Mauritius Foundation as well as the advantages, which the Mauritian jurisdiction offers

What is a Foundation?

A Foundation is a legal entity that combines the features of a Trust and a Company. Its legal structure and functions are similar to those of a Trust, but is administered as a Company. Foundations are interesting to clients who may be unfamiliar with the concept of Trusts, particularly in civil law countries. The Mauritian Foundation can opt to have a legal identity thus having a certificate of registration and hold assets in its own name.

Mauritius Foundations can be used for:

  • Charitable causes;
  • Estate and succession planning;
  • Asset Protection;
  • Wealth management;
  • Asset holding;
  • Tax planning;
  • Pension schemes; and
  • Housing intellectual property.

A Foundation is one of the preferred private structures used by High Net-Worth Individuals to cater for their succession and inheritance planning, private wealth management, limited liability status and asset-holding strategies. Setting up a Foundation in Mauritius, a reputable offshore jurisdiction, can provide numerous advantages to a Founder as well as Beneficiaries.

Types of Assets that can be Held by a Mauritius Foundation

  • Shares and stocks in both listed and private companies;
  • Investment portfolios;
  • Real estate;
  • Intellectual property;
  • Bank deposits;
  • Most other types of assets.

The salient features of the Mauritius Foundation are as follows:

  • It can be set-up by Charter or by Will;
  • It can be set-up to benefit persons, class of persons or to carry out a purpose which may be charitable, non-charitable or both;
  • The foundation is managed by a Council which should comprise of at least one member ordinarily resident in Mauritius;
  • It requires a secretary in Mauritius, licensed by the Financial Services Commission;
  • It must have a registered office in Mauritius;
  • When registered the foundation has a separate legal personality;
  • The foundation must keep proper books of accounts and keep its records in Mauritius at its registered office.

Advantages of setting up a Mauritius Foundation

Mauritius is one of the best jurisdictions for corporate as well as personal structuring in Africa. Indeed, the country ranks 1st on the continent for ease of doing business, is an internationally compliant, cost-effective, and transparent jurisdiction.

Some of the advantages of setting up a Mauritius Foundation are:

  • Charitable Foundations are tax exempted
  • Tax exemption if the founder and all beneficiaries are non-resident – Mauritius Foundations are not liable to tax in case the Founder is a non-resident and the Beneficiaries are non-resident.
  • Benefit from the network of Double Taxation Agreements – A Foundation in Mauritius may apply for a Global Business Company licence if it wants to fall under the supervision of the Financial Services Commission (FSC) and become tax resident. It therefore has access to the wide network of Double Tax Agreements (DTA) and Investment Promotion and Protection Agreements (IPPA) Mauritius has with other countries.
  • Mauritius Foundations can redomicile elsewhere and foundations set up abroad and redomicile to Mauritius
  • Members of the council are not liable to beneficiaries

At Valsen, we can accompany you in setting up your Foundation in Mauritius. Our services include:

  • Understanding your needs if the establishment of a Mauritius Foundation is right for you;
  • Provision of Members of the Council;
  • Drafting of Foundation Charter and other related documents;
  • Provision of accounting and tax compliance services; and
  • Provision of qualified Company Secretary services;

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