Traditionally, the economy of Seychelles has been predominantly agricultural-based, with vast plantations of cinnamon, vanilla, and copra. In the 1960s, more than a third of the working population worked at plantations, and less than a fifth worked in the public or government sector. Following the opening of the international airport, tourism became a dominant industry, which today employs over 30% of the labour force.
Following Seychelles’ independence in 1976, the per capita output has expanded to roughly seven (7) times the old near-subsistence level. In recent years the government has encouraged foreign investment in order to upgrade hotels and other services.
In the 1990s, the government has undertaken a project to turn the Seychelles into an offshore centre, and thereby reducing the dependance on tourism and tuna-fishing. The establishment of the Seychelles International Business Centre, has brought in an advent of new investors, seeking to reap full benefit from the attractive fiscal regime, and strict confidentiality regulations. Although International Business Companies (IBCs) have experienced steady growth over the years, the Seychelles has also been a marked increase in Insurance, Mutual and Hedge Funds.
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