The Republic of Seychelles is an independent country which gained its independence from the United Kingdom in 1976, having been a British colony since 1812. With a population of 96,000, Seychelles comprises a group of 115 islands in the northern Indian Ocean, most of which are situated between 4 and 5 degrees south of the equator. The Seychelles economy is primarily based on tourism and commercial fishing and financial services. Recent years have seen considerable inward investment in the luxury hotel and resort industry.
Seychelles is a multi-party democracy with good political stability. It has a hybrid legal system derived from English common law and French civil law modified by comprehensive and modern corporate and financial services legislation.
Seychelles is a signatory to the Convention on Mutual Administrative Assistance in Tax Matters and is a member of the Commonwealth, the African Union, the Common Market for Eastern and Southern Africa, the Southern African Development Community and the United Nations.