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New low level IRS investment property project for Mauritius

The Azuri project offers investors the opportunity to buy popular Mauritian IRS properties at the minimum qualifying price. Launched in 2002, the Integrated Resort Scheme (IRS) allows investors to acquire Mauritian residency, providing substantial fiscal benefits such as low income tax and no capital gains or inheritance taxes.

Under the IRS, foreigners are permitted to buy an IRS property with a minimum investment of US$500,000 and a fixed land registration duty of US$70,000 or 5% of the purchase price, whichever is the higher.
The acquisition of a freehold property for residential purposes by a foreigner under the IRS rules, allows the purchaser and their dependant family, to reside in Mauritius for as long as they retain ownership.

Although the minimum investment for the IRS is US$500,000 strong demand has meant that the average minimum investment is closer to US$1.6 million, with the best schemes costing significantly more. This has taken IRS property out of the reach of most buyers.
Although Mauritian property prices have been relatively stable during the financial crisis, development finance for major IRS schemes has been difficult to come by and the number of starts has trailed off since 2007.
But Azuri is hoping to get around this by seeking investment at the earliest stage. By securing investment at the start of the project, Indian Ocean Real Estate Company (IOREC), the developers behind Azuri are able to offer buyers the opportunity to purchase an IRS property at a price that is more affordable, with prices ranging from US$500,000 to US$800,000.
‘Azuri offers investors high quality IRS property at an extremely competitive price. The Azuri resort is not just a great investment but also a place to live or visit for a holiday,’ said Murray Adair, chief executive officer of IOREC.

‘Development finance has been constrained which has limited the supply of new IRS properties. We have found a solution that allows us to bring forward new IRS development at a price that is affordable,’ he explained.

According to Ruth Wilkinson, international manager at Hamptons International, ddespite Mauritius having nearly 200 kilometers of coast line only a very small percentage remains as freehold, rather than leasehold. Azuri is unique in that it is one of the very last ocean front locations available.

‘In the middle of the last decade a considerable number of IRS projects were started. Many of these have now fallen away, attributable to the wider decline in global economic activity. At the current time only five IRS projects stand complete,’ she explained.

‘Priced at a considerably more attractive price bracket than other IRS sites and with its unique qualities, we expect Azuri to receive early investment from buyers that are prepared to wait for an attractively high return on their investment,’ she added.

Azuri is currently a master plan for a 420 acre site providing a luxurious ocean front setting, forest and agricultural land only 25 kilometers from the capital Port Louis.
The master plan seeks to create a new village providing education, hospitality, leisure and commercial facilities built around luxury residences. Azuri aims to be a vibrant and evolving community of both year round residents and seasonal guests.
Investors letting properties to holiday makers or expatriates working in Mauritius can expect an initial rental yield of around 5.4% with a flat rate 15% tax on chargeable income. Investors also benefit from there being no capital gains tax, inheritance tax or wealth tax on assets held on the island, according to the developers.

With a population of around 1.25 million, the tropical island of Mauritius has evolved into a safe politically stable nation since its independence in from the UK in 1968.

The Azuri project includes up to 169 IRS townhouses and apartments in landscaped grounds, with swimming pools, together with access to a wide variety of leisure activities both on and off site.

Also a mixture of 100 townhouses and apartment units for local Mauritians, clustered around communal garden areas, with dedicated car parking and boat mooring facilities.

There will also be an 85 bedroom five star boutique hotel, new retail, restaurants and cafes to support residents and visitors. There will also be a new international school providing first class primary and secondary educational to residents. The Azuri aims to become the most desirable area for educational in the Indian Ocean region, seeking to attract permanent foreign residents.