Value-added tax (VAT)
VAT is charged by VAT-registered entities at the standard rate of 15% on all goods and services supplied by them in Mauritius (except those taxed at 0%), other than the following exempt supplies (not an exhaustive list):
- Bread, wheat, and cereal flours (excluding wheat flour).
- Medical, hospital, and dental services, including clinical laboratory services, services provided in a health institution, and veterinary services.
- Educational and training services provided by institutions approved by the Mauritius Qualification Authority.
- Construction of building for residential purpose, provided letter of intent relating to an IRS was issued prior to 1 October 2006.
- Sale or transfer of an immovable property, a building or part of a building, apartment, flat, or tenement.
- Banking services, except:
- services provided to merchants accepting credit/debit card
- services in respect of safe deposit locker, and issue and renewal of credit/debit cards
- services for keeping and maintaining customer’s accounts, and
- services supplied by a bank holding a banking licence under Banking Act 2004 in respect of its banking transactions with non-residents and corporations holding a Global Business Licence.
An entity should register for VAT if turnover exceeds MUR 6 million a year. However, certain service providers (e.g. accountants and auditors, attorneys and solicitors, consultants, surveyors, valuers) should register for VAT irrespective of their turnover.
VAT-registered persons with annual taxable turnover exceeding MUR 10 million should submit their VAT return monthly and electronically by the end of the month following the end of the taxable month. Otherwise, VAT return filing is completed quarterly (i.e. within 20 days following the end of a taxable quarter). The taxable quarter is a period of three months ending at the end of March, June, September, or December. Also, where the VAT-registered persons are filing pay-as-you-earn (PAYE) returns electronically under the Income Tax Act (ITA), they are required to file the VAT returns electronically by the end of the month following the taxable period.
Customs duty is levied on commodities imported into Mauritius. The rate of duty applicable is the rate in force under the Customs Tariff Act at the time the bill of entry is validated at the Customs.
A number of exemptions and concessions are available to industries, organisations, and persons under the Customs Tariff Act.
An excise duty is levied at the time of importation on selected commodities, which includes spirits, vehicles, and petroleum products at corresponding prescribed rates. A levy is also chargeable on some specified excisable goods, whether the goods are for home consumption or not, at corresponding prescribed rates.
Campement site tax
Per the Land (Duties and Taxes) Act, every owner of a campement site situated in a specified zone is subject to an annual tax known as the campement site tax, varying between MUR 2 to MUR 6 per square metre.
The tax shall be payable to the authorised officer on or before 31 July in every year.
Land transfer tax
Per the Land (Duties and Taxes) Act, land transfer tax is levied on the transfer of land and is payable by the transferor at the rate of 5%.
Land transfer tax is also payable at the above rates by the transferor upon transfer of the shares of a company owning immovable properties, based on the value of shares or property, whichever is the lower.
The following transactions are not subject to land transfer duty (non-exhaustive list):
- A transfer of immovable property from ascendant to descendant (or vice versa).
- A transfer of immovable property or shares between companies forming part of a group of companies, as defined in the Companies Act 2001.
- A transfer of immovable property where such transfer takes place between companies having the same shareholders for the sole purpose of merging.
Per the Land (Duties and Taxes) Act, leasehold tax is levied on the registration of a deed of transfer of leasehold rights in state land. The leasehold tax is levied on the open market value of the leasehold right at the time of transfer at the rate of 20% and is payable by the transferor and transferee in equal proportion (i.e. 10% each).
The Registration Duty Act provides, among others, for a duty at an effective rate of 5% of the sum of money paid as a condition of an exchange of immovable property, or a division in kind of immovable property, where such sum does not exceed MUR 100,000.
The transfer of shares of a company other than those listed on the Stock Exchange of Mauritius or traded on the secondary market is subject to registration duty if the company holds immovable property.
Stamp duty is levied and paid to the Registrar General on every document at the time of registration, transcription, inscription, or erasure of inscription. Stamp duty varies from MUR 25 to MUR 1,000.
Every employer has to register with the MRA as an employer and has to withhold income tax from the emolument of the employee at the time the emolument is made available to the employee.
The employer has to remit the amount withheld within 20 days from the end of the month in which the tax was withheld. Where the employer has 25 or more employees, the PAYE return and tax withheld should be remitted electronically. In cases where the employer has less than 25 employees, the PAYE return and tax withheld may be remitted electronically.
Failure to comply with the above entails a penalty of 5% of the unpaid tax and an interest of 1% per month or part of the month during which the tax remained unpaid.
Social security contributions
National Pensions Fund (NPF)
Contributions to the NPF are payable by the employer at 6% of cash remuneration, up to a maximum remuneration of MUR 16,995 per month. Employees contribute to the NPF at 3%, subject to a maximum amount of MUR 510 per month.
National Savings Fund (NSF)
Employers are required to contribute 2.5% of remuneration to the NSF, subject to a maximum of MUR 425 per month per employee, and to pay a monthly levy of 1.5% of basic salaries and wages of every employee. Employees are required to pay a 1% levy, subject to a maximum amount of MUR 170 per month.