The Registrar of Companies in Mauritius has issued a practice direction relating to the disclosure of beneficial ownership by companies and any other entities such as partnerships and foundations. Such entities must, as already stated in the Companies Act, enter the names of the Beneficial Owner or Ultimate Beneficial Owner of the entity in their registers, and such information must be kept for 7 years.
Any information relating to a new issue or transfer entailing a change in the beneficial ownership information must be filed with the Companies and Business Registration Department within 14 days of entry in the entity's registers. Such information will only be disclosed to any third party in the following circumstances:
- if required by the Beneficial Owner or the Ultimate Beneficial Owner;
- for the purpose of an investigation, enquiry, or any similar matter;
- if ordered by a Court of Law or the Judge in Chambers.
It is important to note that records of the existing beneficial ownership information must be communicated to the Companies and Business Registration Department at any time prior to or upon filing of the next annual return.
In relation to the said requirements, the term Beneficial Owner or Ultimate Beneficial Owner means a natural person who holds by himself or his nominee a share or interest in a share which entitles him to exercise not less than 20% of the aggregate voting power in a meeting of shareholders/partners or council members.
The content of this article is intended to provide a general guide to the subject matter. Specialist advice should be sought about your specific circumstances.