management systems to the financial services industry, is taking part in a
trade mission to South Africa and Mauritius organised by the London Chamber
The mission left for South Africa on 10th May and culminates on the island
of Mauritius at the end of the month. Lynx will be publishing its complete
findings on its return to the UK.
Britain and South Africa have traditionally had strong links for
international trade. The UK is the largest investor in the country and is
South Africa's largest export market. British exports to SA are increasing
and there are a number of incentives for companies looking to invest in the
Commenting on the trade mission, John Mosedale, Managing Director of Lynx
Financial Systems International, said: "The similar legal and business
practices and the strong bilateral relationships with the UK, mean that
South Africa offers an opportunity for growth and an ideal base for
companies looking to develop long-term business partnerships.
"As income arising outside South Africa is generally not taxable in South
Africa even if it is remitted there and accrues to a South African resident,
this positions the country well as a host jurisdiction for holding,
investment or management companies in respect of operations and
South Africa is undergoing a review of its international taxation profile,
as part of an overall tax reform review to bring the taxation system in line
with an overall strategy aimed at sustainable economic growth. In addition
it is in the process of rapidly expanding its network of almost fifty
existing double taxation agreements, to supplement those with, amongst
others, Germany, the Netherlands, Switzerland, the United Kingdom and many
African countries, so it has a great deal more to offer.
Many new companies are taking a great interest in South Africa and the
climate is very favourable right now for British companies. Trade Partners
UK - a body that promotes business in South Africa - acts as a gateway to a
market of over 185 million people and facilitates partnerships with UK
companies to enable them to do business in SA.
The second location on the trade mission, Mauritius, has a long history of
international financial and business trade. The offshore sector on
Mauritius was established in 1990 and has many benefits that make it
desirable as a base for offshore banking. It has an established and
respected regulatory and legal system and a solid framework of fiscal
incentives that are protected by a raft of proactive legislation and include
over twenty double tax agreements with other countries. Mauritius also has
many other tax benefits, including no inheritance tax, no capital gains tax
and no withholding taxes on dividends, interest and royalties, which are all
helping drive its transition into a high calibre financial centre.
Mosedale explained: "One of the main pluses to setting up a presence on
Mauritius for our potential clients is that it is not on any of the
'blacklists' of offshore tax havens and, with a low tax regime that is still
efficient and effective, the benefits are clear. It is also not subject to
any EU regulations or pressures and therefore is immune to the issues of
transparency of information and lack of confidentiality for which other
jurisdictions have recently come under attack."
The restructuring of Mauritius' economy over the past two decades has gained
international recognition for the country and it is at the stage where
development into a premier offshore financial centre is imminent. This is
why Lynx's timing for taking part in the trade mission is so important.
The growth of the number of people who can conduct offshore global business
in Mauritius has grown to over twenty thousand, as of December 2002,
according to the Mauritius Financial Services Promotion Agency.