BUDGET BRIEF 2016-2017 : measures relating to the real estate sector

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The Following measures will impact positively the real estate sector :

REGISTRATION DUTIES

· Exemption for a Mauritian acquiring a newly built dwelling costing less than Rs.6 million on land which is not on Pas Géométriques or within an Integrated Resort Scheme, Real Estate Scheme, Property Development Scheme or Hotel Invest Scheme during the period from 1 September 2016 to 30 June 2020.
· Exemption for a promoter when acquiring land (which is not on Pas Géométriques or within an Integrated Resort Scheme, Real Estate Scheme, Property Development Scheme or Hotel Invest Scheme) for a Construction of Housing Estate Scheme registered with the Mauritius Revenue Authority where a residential unit is sold for less than Rs.6 million to a Mauritian before 30 June 2020.
· Exemption for a purchaser of a residential unit for less than Rs.6 million before 30 June 2020 (on land which is not on Pas Géométriques or within an Integrated Resort Scheme, Real Estate Scheme, Property Development Scheme or Hotel Invest Scheme) from a promoter of a Construction of Housing Estate Scheme registered with the Mauritius Revenue Authority.
· Exemption on the first Rs.2 million of the value of bare residential land not exceeding 20 perches for a first time buyer. The latter is defined as not owning any land on 29 July 2016 although he may have purchased one in the past.
· Exemption for a Mauritian borrower of less than Rs.2 million for a secured housing loan

LAND TRANSFER TAX

· Exemption for an owner of land (which is not on Pas Géométriques or within an Integrated Resort Scheme, Real Estate Scheme, Property Development Scheme or Hotel Invest Scheme) when sold to a promoter for a Construction of Housing Estate Scheme registered with the Mauritius Revenue Authority where a residential unit will be sold for less than Rs.6 million to a Mauritian before 30 June 2020.
· Exemption for a promoter when selling a residential unit for less than Rs.6 million on land (which is not on Pas Géométriques or within an Integrated Resort Scheme, Real Estate Scheme, Property Development Scheme or Hotel Invest Scheme) under a Construction of Housing Estate Scheme registered with the Mauritius Revenue Authority to a Mauritian before 30 June 2020.
· Exemption for an employer providing free social housing to his employees on land not exceeding 7 perches.

REVIEW ON THE PROPERTY DEVELOPMENT SCHEME (PDS)

· No restriction on the maximum extent of land for development of a project (was limited to 50 arpents)
· 100 % of residential units can be sold to non-citizens. (in the previous Act, 25% had to be sold to Mauritians).
· Individual plot size for the construction of a villa has been extended to a maximum of 1.25 Arpent, i.e. 5275m2 (was 2110m2).

FOREIGN OWNERSHIP AMENDED

To further open the economy, non-citizens registered with the Board of Investment (BOI), subject to security clearance, will be allowed to acquire apartments and business spaces in buildings. The Non-Citizens (Property Restriction) Act will be amended accordingly.

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