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The Exchange of Tax Information Portal is an initiative of the Global Forum on Transparency and Exchange of Information for Tax Purposes. The Global Forum conducts peer reviews of its member jurisdictions' ability to co-operate with other tax administrations in accordance with the internationally agreed standard. The standard provides for exchange of information on request where it is foreseeably relevant to the administration and enforcement of the domestic tax laws of the requesting jurisdiction. Effective exchange of information requires that jurisdictions ensure information is available, that it can be obtained by the tax authorities and that there are mechanisms in place allowing for the exchange of that information. The Global Forum's peer review process examines both the legal and regulatory aspects of exchange (Phase 1 reviews) and the exchange of information in practice (Phase 2). The EOI Portal will track the development of these peer reviews, including changes that jurisdictions make in response to the Global Forum's recommendations.

Peer Review: Merged Combined Review Mauritius

This report for Mauritius has been published on 26 Oct 2011. You can buy this report, or browse it online below.

Skip directly to the Executive Summary. You may also want to view the tables of determinations and ratings.


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Determinations and Recommendations

Jurisdictions should ensure that ownership and identity information for all relevant entities and arrangements is available to their competent authorities. (ToR A.1)
Determination Factors Recommendations
The element is in place, but certain aspects of the legal implementation of the element need improvement.   There are no obligations to maintain ownership and identity information in case of nominee shareholding, except for public companies and GBCs.  Mauritius should establish a requirement that information is maintained indicating the person on whose behalf any legal owner holds his interest or shares in any company or body corporate. 
No identity information is available on non-resident foreign trusts administered in Mauritius or in respect of which a trustee is resident in Mauritius, where these are not management companies.  An obligation should be established for all trustees and administrators resident in Mauritius to maintain information on the settlor, trustees and beneficiaries of their trusts. 
Phase 2 Rating Factors Recommendations
Largely Compliant.  Mauritius has no enforcement experience where provisions on the availability of information are recent.  Enforcement of the legal provisions on the availability of ownership and accounting information in the global business sector should be monitored. 
Jurisdictions should ensure that reliable accounting records are kept for all relevant entities and arrangements. (ToR A.2)
Determination Factors Recommendations
The element is in place, but certain aspects of the legal implementation of the element need improvement.   Underlying documentation is not explicitly required to be kept by Mauritian trustees for trusts that are not considered resident for tax purposes and do not carry on a business or derive income in Mauritius.  Mauritius should ensure that all relevant entities and arrangements maintain underlying documentation, for at least five years. 
Phase 2 Rating Factors Recommendations
Largely Compliant.  Mauritius has no enforcement experience where provisions on the availability of accounting information are recent.  Enforcement of the legal provisions on the availability of accounting information in the global business sector should be monitored. 
Banking information should be available for all account-holders. (ToR A.3)
Determination Factors Recommendations
The element is in place.      
Phase 2 Rating Factors Recommendations
Compliant.     
Competent authorities should have the power to obtain and provide information that is the subject of a request under an exchange of information arrangement from any person within their territorial jurisdiction who is in possession or control of such information (irrespective of any legal obligation on such person to maintain the secrecy of the information). (ToR B.1)
Determination Factors Recommendations
The element is in place.      
Phase 2 Rating Factors Recommendations
Largely Compliant.  Mauritius has the legal framework in place to access information, including compulsory powers, but has never exercised its compulsory powers in practice, and their effectiveness cannot be assessed.  Mauritius should exercise its powers to compel information and sanction failure to provide information whenever appropriate. The implementation of these powers in practice should be monitored by Mauritius 
The rights and safeguards (e.g. notification, appeal rights) that apply to persons in the requested jurisdiction should be compatible with effective exchange of information. (ToR B.2)
Determination Factors Recommendations
The element is in place.      
Phase 2 Rating Factors Recommendations
Largely Compliant.  The rights and safeguards that apply to persons in Mauritius appear to be compatible with effective exchange of information. Some of them have not yet been tested in practice to assess whether they could unduly prevent or delay exchange of information.  Mauritius should ensure that its new guidelines regarding prior notification are applied in practice. 
Exchange of information mechanisms should provide for effective exchange of information. (ToR C.1)
Determination Factors Recommendations
The element is in place.   One DTC limits exchange of information to the carrying out of the provisions of the Convention and does not extend to the administration and enforcement of domestic laws of the contracting states.  Mauritius should continue to negotiate with existing partners (or take steps to expedite entry into force of) new exchange of information arrangements where the existing treaties do not meet the international standard. 
Most of Mauritius’s DTCs do not include paragraphs 4 and 5 of Article 26 of the Model Tax Convention in its treaties, but Mauritius has indicated that it is ready to exchange bank information even in the absence of reciprocity.  Exchange of bank information should be ensured with all Mauritius’s treaty partners. Although Mauritius is willing to exchange information even in the absence of paragraphs 4 and 5 of Article 26 of the Model Tax Convention and reciprocity, Mauritius is encouraged to continue upgrading the exchange of information provision in its treaties to include paragraphs 4 and 5, to secure the benefit of reciprocity from its treaty partners, especially those jurisdictions that are unable to do so without paragraphs 4 and 5 being explicitly provided. 
Phase 2 Rating Factors Recommendations
Largely Compliant.  The Mauritian competent authority has faced difficulties in some cases in deciding whether a request meets the foreseeably relevance standard.  Mauritius is encouraged to continue communicating quickly with its treaty partners when the competent authority is unsure that the received request meets the foreseeably relevance standard. 
The jurisdictions' network of information exchange mechanisms should cover all relevant partners. (ToR C.2)
Determination Factors Recommendations
The element is in place.   Mauritius is actively negotiating a number of new treaties, protocols or TIEAs (Tax Information Exchange Agreements) to upgrade its oldest treaties that do not meet the standard. Although Mauritius has a wide treaty network, it does not have a DTC with some of its important trade partners.  Mauritius should continue to develop its EOI network with all relevant partners. 
Phase 2 Rating Factors Recommendations
Compliant.     
The jurisdictions' mechanisms for exchange of information should have adequate provisions to ensure the confidentiality of information received. (ToR C.3)
Determination Factors Recommendations
The element is in place.      
Phase 2 Rating Factors Recommendations
Compliant.     
The exchange of information mechanisms should respect the rights and safeguards of taxpayers and third parties. (ToR C.4)
Determination Factors Recommendations
The element is in place.      
Phase 2 Rating Factors Recommendations
Compliant.     
The jurisdiction should provide information under its network of agreements in a timely manner. (ToR C.5)
Determination Factors Recommendations
The assessment team is not in a position to evaluate whether this element is in place, as it involves issues of practice that are dealt with in the Phase 2 review.      
Phase 2 Rating Factors Recommendations
Largely Compliant.  In the past, when the information requested was not available in Mauritian tax files or the person concerned did not provide the information, it has taken too long to obtain information from third parties. The competent authority has adopted a Procedure Manual recently. It sets new deadlines for different steps of an exchange of information procedure but it is too recent for its implementation to be assessed at this stage.  Mauritius should continue respecting the deadlines recently introduced in its new Procedure Manual and ensure responses or updates are received by treaty partners within 90 days of receipt. In addition, the competent authority should continue monitoring the implementation of the Manual as practice develops, and improve it where needed.