The Seychelles is one of the classic offshore countries; it is situated in the Indian Ocean. Offshore companies are completely exempt from any taxes. Filing and publishing financial statements or tax returns is not required, nor is appointing an auditor. The main legislative requirement is to keep accounting records for 7 years.
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The accounting records of Seychelles offshore companies are not subject to public disclosure, however, such companies must maintain their accounting records.
The International Business Companies Act sets out the following minimum obligations:
- an international business company is required to maintain accounting records that must:
- accounting records include documents confirming the assets and liabilities of a company, records of sales and purchases and other documents confirming relevant transactions;
- accounting records must be kept at the company’s registered office address or at such other address as decided by the directors (when accounting records are kept at an address other than the registered office, the company must inform the registered agent in writing about such physical address; if the records keeping address changes, the company notifies the registered agent in writing about the change of the physical address within 14 days);
- accounting records must be kept for 7 years.
Preparing or filing annual accounts is not mandatory for Seychelles companies (with some exceptions), nor is appointing an auditor.
Companies are required to comply with the director’s request for accounting records within two weeks of the request. Failure to comply may result in fines, and if the company refuses to disclose this information, a formal request may be lodged with the court for such disclosure.
Starting from 2022, all Seychelles companies must:
If a company operates within Seychelles, it must obtain a tax number and register with the Seychelles Revenue Commission.
According to the International Business Companies Act, appointing an auditor or conducting an audit is not mandatory for offshore companies incorporated in Seychelles.
From February 2022, large companies (and other companies that do not qualify as “non-large”) must, within 6 months of the end of the company’s financial year, prepare an annual financial summary which must be kept at their registered office in Seychelles.
All companies are required to submit accounting records to their registered office in Seychelles by 6 February 2022, including historical records for 7 years up to 31 December 2021, i.e. all accounting records starting from 1 January 2015.
Any non-compliance with accounting records requirements in Seychelles may result in a fine between USD 2,000 and USD 10,000.
From February 2022, the Seychelles Registrar will initiate on-site compliance inspections to ensure that Seychelles entities maintain proper accounting records; if violations are detected, appropriate sanctions will be applied, including:
Even if a legal entity is struck off, dissolved (liquidated) or deregistered, the director must ensure that all accounting records are lodged at the entity’s registered office in Seychelles.
There is no requirement to prepare a consolidated report.
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