The Financial Services Authority (FSA) and the Registrar for International Business Companies (IBCs) remain open for filings but are functioning on skeleton staff. Filings of Charges for Registration over assets of IBCs are still being dealt with, with an average turnaround time of 3-5 working days.
The Registrar of Companies (RoC) Registrar for domestic companies remains open for filings, but are functioning on skeleton staff, limiting services .
2. Can Searches be conducted?
Company Searches on IBCs can still be carried out remotely by the FSA with a turnaround time within 48 hours, however, results may be restricted to scanned copies for the time being where the collection of originals is not available.
Company physical searches on domestic companies at RoC are currently not available.
The Court Registrar is not accepting requests for any litigation searches for the time being.
No online company/litigation search system is yet available in the Seychelles.
3. Certificates of good standing (CGS)– if and how these are being conducted
CGS for IBCs are available from the FSA as above.
CGS for domestic companies are not available.
For good standing of a company one may rely on a Director’s Certificate or Certificate of Incumbency issued by the Company Secretary or Registered Agent, if available and at client’s own risk.
4. Other searches – how are these being conducted?
No other applicable company search is available in the Seychelles; other than land searches and the Land Registrar’s physical file search section is closed for the time being.
5. Court sessions and position (including filings and hearings)
All Court sessions are closed down except for certain emergency criminal cases that are required to be heard on a limited basis (e.g for remand).
The Court Registrar is functioning on skeleton staff and on a limited services basis, operation times for notarisation and apostille of documents are restricted to one hour per day.
6. Any travel restrictions
Apart for banned entry for flights to and from China, Korea and Iran, no flights are now permitted entry from any European Countries (including the UK, Reunion and Mayotte) into Seychelles since 18 March 2020 (unless otherwise authorised, e.g for repatriation or for essential merchandise).
All Seychellois currently in the Seychelles are prohibited from travelling abroad for a period of 30 days, commencing on 23 March 2020, except for medical emergencies.
Air Seychelles have cancelled all its flights (except for special repatriation flights as directed).
This willl have an impact upon courier services available into and out of Seychelles for the time being.
7. Other Temporary Regulatory Measures
On 20 March 2020 the President of Seychelles officially announced measures to address the COVID-19 situation as follows:
- All schools, including day care, post secondary etc. are closed until further notice since 16 March 2020.
- The Department of Labour announced a new Employment Regulation as from 23 March 2020 for the protection of parents during leave of absence from work – all working parents in the private sector with children under the age of 15 will now be able to take leave from their jobs to look after their children at home and any leave taken as a result of school closures announced by the Public Health Commissioner will not count towards their regular annual leave.
- The Government has committed a sum of SCR1.2 billion for the salary payment of employees working in the private sector for the months of April, May and June 2020 to protect businesses, primarily affecting the tourism sector, which is the number one industry in the Seychelles. Payments shall apply to Seychellois and non-Seychellois employees alike.
- As a result, the Government has indicated that the Ministry of Labour shall not be approving any redundancies.
- Tax payments due at the end of March 2020 have been postponed to September 2020.
- Corporate social responsibility tax and tourism marketing tax have been postponed to September 2020.
- The Central Bank of Seychelles is to facilitate a reduction and/or moratorium on loan repayments for a period of up six months.
- The Government is to present a new budget for 2020 on 31 March to the National Assembly for approval.
- The public are urged to comply with the Department of Health advisories, limit non-essential movement and avoid large gatherings – churches, gyms, bars etc are closed down. Any unauthorised meeting, indoor and outdoor of more than 10 people is strictly prohibited and shall be punished by a fine of Sr20,00 and/or two years imprisonment.
8. Implications for economic substance compliance and residency
No announcements have been made in that respect.