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Mauritius: IRS and RES

Sunday, May 1, 2011

IRS: Integrated Resort Scheme
RES: Real Estate Scheme

A foreigner non-resident in Mauritius cannot acquérir a classic freehold property on the island unless buying in a IRS or a RES.

IRS: The Mauritius government has set up this scheme in order to generate investments on the island, which was until then exclusitve to Mauritius residents.

The IRS developments are in short developments of luxury villas and apartments sold for a minimum of USD 500.000 or the same equivalent in Euro or Pound Sterling. In investing in an IRS you automatically obtain the Mauritius residency and consequently the tax residency if you stay there more than 6 months of the year.

IRS developments have to propose to their residents some luxury sport or leisure facilities such as a golf course, a marina, private swimming pools, reputable restaurants and a management company to take care of the property and rent it when and if required. Most of the IRS have a luxury branded hotel on site provided these facilities and the rental and management of the villas.

RES: These developments have been introduced more recently by the Mauritius government and they allow foreigners to purchase properties at a lower cost as there is no minimum price. They are consequently cheaper than IRS developments. One difference lies in the fact that there is no garantee of obtention of a resident permit with RES, contrarily to the IRS. However, by investing 500,000 USD in a property, it is highly likely that residency would be granted. The other difference lies on the fact that the services proposed depend on the developer and are usually reduced compared to those of an IRS.

Please note that the residency is primarily sought after for those looking to get the tax residencey (and so stay on the island for more than 6 months of the year). But without the residency status, you are still entitled to stay on Mauritius for 6 months per year.

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