01.26.18

President of Seychelles to attend AU summit in Ethiopia

Posted in International relations, Seychelles government at 9:41 pm by Robert Klien

The President of Seychelles, Danny Faure, will be attending the 30th session of the African Union (AU) summit of heads of state which starts on Sunday in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia, State House said.

President Faure will leave the country on January 27 and return January 29.

According to CNBC Africa, an African television network, “Two critical issues will impact on the relevance of the AU as a regional mechanism: firstly, the continuation of the reforms proposed by Rwandan President Paul Kagame, who is set to chair the organisation in 2018; and secondly, the adoption of a protocol of free movement that will further the integration of the continent.”

Seychelles’ Secretary of State for the Foreign Affairs department, Barry Faure, is attending the AU’s Executive Council 2-day meeting which started on January 25.

Faure spoke on the subject of the implementation of the Africa Agenda 2063 and flagship projects. The Agenda is a framework for the socio-economic transformation of the continent over the next 50 years and the flagship projects are those approved by the AU Summit and seen as very urgent and relevant. According to Faure, while there has been progress in some areas like with the Single African Air Transport Market, he expressed concern that the majority of the projects were encountering delays. He called for robust mechanisms to be put in place to address this

 

01.25.18

Seychelles-India Agreement for military use of island being revised

Posted in Bilateral Treaties, International relations at 9:41 pm by Robert Klien

The agreement between India and Seychelles to build military infrastructures on the remote island of Assumption has been revised and will be signed on January 27.

The decision followed an extraordinary meeting between the President of Seychelles, Danny Faure, and his Cabinet of Ministers on Tuesday.

The agreement was  signed during the official visit of the Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi to Seychelles in March 2015 to be the first one that was supposed to go before the Seychelles National Assembly for ratification as stipulated in the constitution.

The Secretary of State of the Foreign Affairs department Barry Faure said that when the agreement was signed the intention was not for India to take control of the island. “Although the project was being financed entirely by India, Seychelles retains full ownership of the facilities and sovereign rights over the island,” he said.

The remote island of Assumption is situated some 1,140 southwest of the Seychelles main island of Mahe.

 

01.20.18

Seychelles to chair AML meeting to address “grey-list”issues

Posted in Business and Economy, International Organisations, International relations, Seychelles government at 8:41 pm by Robert Klien

 

Seychelles is gearing up to hold this year’s Eastern and Southern Africa Anti-Money Laundering (AML) Group meeting in August while also preparing to take up the presidency of the group, the jurisdiction’s finance minister said.

To prepare for the high-level meeting, Seychelles’ Ministry of Finance is holding frequent meetings with all involved parties to ensure the event goes smoothly from start to finish.

Peter Larose, the Minister for Finance, Trade and Economic Planning, said: “It is important that we plan ahead. I had to call on a number of parties to be able to assist as this is about Seychelles. We need to showcase Seychelles’ style of management, governance system and show the world that we are a capable, responsible and accountable government”.

According to him, the guests will have the opportunity to witness the competitive edge of Seychelles as part of the global village.

Minister said that discussions in this year’s meeting will focus on our compliance with international best practices including preventing money-laundering, tax evasion and combatting the financing of terrorism. “It is part and parcel of our commitment to share information within the group and Africa, and with the rest of the world,” said Larose.

The aim of the group is to combat anti-money laundering by implementing recommendations of the Financial Action Task Force on Money Laundering (FATF). The organisation sets standards and promotes effective application of AML legal and regulatory measures.

01.17.18

Seychelles and Abu Dhabi leaders meet at World Future Energy Summit

Posted in Business and Economy, Diplomatic missions, International relations at 9:44 pm by Robert Klien

The president of Seychelles, Danny Faure, met with Sheikh Mohammed bin Zayed, crown prince of Abu Dhabi, on the sidelines of the World Future Energy Summit this week.

The two leaders discussed how to maintain friendly relations and support between the two jurisdictions.

On January 15, President Faure attended the official opening of the Abu Dhabi Sustainability Week being held under the theme “Driving the Global Energy Transformation.”

The head of state of Seychelles is attending the World Future Energy Summit for the 2nd time in his presidency.

The event is a global discussion on the future of renewable energy, clean technology and sustainability and is held every year as part of Abu Dhabi Sustainability Week. This year, the summit will cover burning issues and key trends in the renewable energy sector, such as the future of energy and transport in urban.

04.10.17

Seychelles and Kenya to strengthen ties in trade, tourism, security

Posted in Bilateral Treaties, Diplomatic missions, International relations at 6:16 pm by Robert Klien

During a visit to Kenya, Seychelles’ President Danny Faure and Kenyan President Uhuru Kenyatta entered into a wide-reaching agreement aimed to enhance ties in trade and security

President Faure left Seychelles on April 2 on his first state visit since he took office in October 2016 following the resignation of former President James Michel.

The agreement was the culmination of bilateral discussions between the two heads of state at the State House in Nairobi on April 3. The agreement will see Kenya export more human capital (for example, teachers) and agricultural products to Seychelles.

President Faure said it makes more economic sense for Seychelles to import beef and poultry from Kenya instead of countries like Brazil. In the maritime sector, Seychelles has expressed its support to Kenya in developing its fishing industry, where President Kenyatta said little attention has been paid to since its independence. Seychelles will also support Kenya to develop the capacity of the port of Mombasa to act as a fish trans-shipment port.

The two Presidents also agreed for the two countries to cooperate in tourism development by partnering the agencies managing the sectors.

04.05.17

Secret US-Russia meeting held in Seychelles, according to Washington Post

Posted in Business and Economy, International relations at 6:12 pm by Robert Klien

On April 4, the Seychelles’ Department of Foreign Affairs said it does not know if the individuals mentioned in a Washington Post article met in Seychelles.

According to the newspaper, a secret meeting was organised between Blackwater founder Erik Prince and a Russian close to President Vladimir Putin as part of an apparent effort to establish a back-channel line of communication between Moscow and President-elect Donald Trump.

According to the Washington Post, meeting took place in Seychelles around January 11, 9 days before Trump’s inauguration. “Though the full agenda remains unclear, the UAE agreed to broker the meeting in part to explore whether Russia could be persuaded to curtail its relationship with Iran, including in Syria, a Trump administration objective that would be likely to require major concessions to Moscow on US sanctions”.

01.13.17

IMF says Seychelles Needs to Boost Revenue

Posted in International Organisations, International relations at 6:22 pm by Robert Klien

On January 11, the International Monetary Fund (IMF) indicated that Seychelles will need to take further measures aimed to increase tax revenue over the medium term.

With strong economic activity continuing in Seychelles, the IMF it expects the country’s primary surplus – the surplus before accounting for the cost of interest on debt – is to reach 3% of gross domestic product (GDP) in 2016, despite the expansionary impact of the fiscal initiatives announced in the State of the Nation Address in early 2016. Those measures included personal income tax (PIT) cuts and increases in pensions and the minimum wage.

The IMF confirmed that “the State of the Nation Address initiatives entailed substantial fiscal costs, around 3% of GDP on a full-year basis.” The PIT reforms were designed by the Government of Seychelles to reduce the tax burden on low-income earners and, on a phased basis, make the tax system more progressive.

The IMF noted that the proposed 2017 Budget includes some measures to moderate the impact of the initiatives, including a new property tax on foreigners’ land ownership in Seychelles, and realignments to the presumptive tax rate and to the tax rate on profits made by individual businesses. However, its opinion was that “additional and permanent measures to boost revenue and contain expenditure will be needed to ensure a steady debt reduction over the medium term.”

01.03.17

Switzerland consults on Implementation of AEOI Agreements with Seychelles

Posted in Business and Economy, International relations at 11:43 am by Robert Klien

Switzerland has launched a consultation on the introduction of the automatic exchange of information in tax matters with a series of countries including Seychelles.

The consultation will run until March 15, 2017. The Swiss Federal Department of Finance (FDF) is planning that the AEOI with a number of jurisdictions enters into force on January 1, 2018, with the first exchanges to take place in 2019.

The introduction of the AEOI with the countries confirms Switzerland’s international commitment to implement the AEOI standard. It is expected to enhance the competitiveness and credibility as well as the integrity of Switzerland’s financial center.

Besides Seychelles, the list of countries includes: Andorra, Argentina, Barbados, Bermuda, Brazil, the British Virgin Islands, the Cayman Islands, Chile, the Faroe Islands, Greenland, India, Israel, Mauritius, Mexico, Monaco, New Zealand, San Marino, the Seychelles, South Africa, Turks and Caicos, and Uruguay.

09.16.16

Seychelles is 36th World’s Freest Economy

Posted in Business and Economy, International relations, Seychelles offshore jurisdiction at 6:47 pm by Robert Klien

Seychelles was ranked 36th out of 159 countries and territories in the Institute’s annual Economic Freedom of the World report.

Top position was occupied by Hong Kong which became the world’s freest economy for the 22nd consecutive year. It was followed by Singapore. The other nations in the top 10 are New Zealand, Switzerland, Canada, Georgia, Ireland, Mauritius, the UAE, and Australia and the UK.

The rankings of some other major countries are as follows: the United States was 16th, Germany was 30th; Japan was 40th; South Korea was 42nd; France was 57th; and Italy – 69th.

09.05.16

Seychelles to set up Regional Coordination Centre to fight Maritime Crime

Posted in International Organisations, International relations at 10:41 am by Robert Klien

To deal with maritime crimes, Seychelles will soon activate a Regional Operation Coordination Centre, local authorities said.

The chief of staff of the Seychelles People’s Defence Forces (SPDF), Michael Rosette, said with the operation of the new centre should enhance the jurisdiction’s capacity to deal with the increasing threats of maritime crimes.

The announcement came after a 1-week trans-regional seminar hosted by the Seychelles Coast Guard in which 30 participants from several countries met to discuss ways to combat terrorism and violent extremism using non-violent methods. The event was organised by the American Joint Special Operations University (JSOU), the Defense Combating Terrorism Fellowship Program (CTFP) and the United States Embassy.

Rosette said that it is important for all to collaborate and have a concerted approach to deal with terrorism.

The course coordinator, retired US army officer Carlos Burgos, said it was important to take a strategic approach to deal with the issue of terrorism as this would allow participants to look at larger issues across their whole country. “It’s not about combating terrorism with arms but rather combating it through social and political programmes,” he said.

To remind, Seychelles has suffered economic fallout from past attacks from Somali pirates in the region.

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