Back

Country Reports

Seychelles Country Report

Content provided by
IHS Markit Logo

Risk Level

Low
Moderate
Elevated
High
Very High
Severe
Extreme

Overview

Executive Summary

Seychelles' political landscape has traditionally been dominated by the People's Party (Parti Lepep: PL), now the United Seychelles Party (U-SEY), led by President Danny Faure, who took over from James Michel following his resignation in 2016 after U-SEY lost its parliamentary majority to the Seychellois Democratic Alliance (Linyon Demokratik Seselwa: LDS) opposition coalition. The presidential election, due in December 2020, is likely to be close-run between U-SEY and LDS candidates, but modest fundamental policy differences between the main parties assists policy stability. Social unrest is rare although peaceful demonstrations are likely in the run-up to the presidential election. The government has acknowledged a crime rate increase, particularly on main island Mahé, and set up the National Intelligence Agency in December 2018, which is likely to mitigate the main risks of financial crime and illegal fishing. Petty crime is likely on Mahé and Praslin islands, although levels are low compared to regional levels. Seychelles continues to improve its overall business environment, as shown by its improved World Bank Doing Business report ranking. Tourism, fisheries, and offshore financial activities are the main stimulants of growth. However, the economy's high dependence on tourism for foreign exchange earnings leaves the external account vulnerable to developments in major tourist markets, such as the European Union and, increasingly, China. The country's lack of land as well as its physical remoteness will continue to constrain Seychelles' growth prospects. New offshore hydrocarbon discoveries and installation of floating solar panels are likely to reduce Seychelles' dependence on energy imports and boost its economic diversification. The government has offered exploration tenders for offshore deep-water blocks along the Seychelles-Mascarene Ridge Basin, containing an estimated 797 million barrels of oil, and has signed production agreements with two oil companies, PetroQuest International and East African Exploration. Exploration will likely be tightly regulated in keeping with Seychelles' 'blue economy' water resources sustainability.
Last update: October 29, 2019

Operational Outlook

Seychelles has an open economic system actively seeking international capital to invest in its tourism, fisheries, offshore finance, and hydrocarbons sectors. The country remains dependent on foreign investment for sustained growth and minimises operational obstacles to promote investment diversity. Infrastructure is adequate, and labour is highly educated for the region. Bureaucracy and labour unrest risks are low, although the long tenure of the ruling party has given rise to low levels of cronyism and patronage.

Last update: October 30, 2019

Terrorism

Low

Somali pirates pushing out across the Indian Ocean present a low risk to Seychellois fishing lanes and tourism, as they no longer have the capacity to operate so far east. In 2010, in the last reported incident, six Seychellois were captured by pirates southeast of the island of Mahé, but the government has since implemented a military strategy with EU and US support, and improved its legal framework dealing with piracy offenders.

Last update: October 30, 2019

Crime

The islands have experienced an increase in petty property crime and burglaries, which mirror the rise in unemployment. However, the islands are generally safe, and most visits are trouble free. Petty crime most often occurs in the back streets of the capital Victoria at night. Tourists are likely targets and should avoid travelling alone in isolated locations, particularly beaches. The Seychelles Police Department is organised in a centralised command structure, directly answerable to the country's president and divided into seven specialised divisions. The effectiveness of the police is hobbled by a relatively small budget and outdated equipment, and response times may be slow. Many tourist resorts consequently employ private security.

Last update: October 30, 2019

War Risks

There are no disputes with regional neighbours likely to lead to armed conflict. The government's military strategy relies mainly on maritime co-operation with the EU and US to counter terrorism and maritime piracy threats. Seychelles parliament is still to ratify an agreement with India to operate a joint naval facility on Assumption Island, following opposition lawmakers' criticism that it would undermine the country's sovereignty. The threat of military mutinies and armed coups in Seychelles has receded since the adoption of multiparty democracy in 1992.

Last update: October 30, 2019

Social Stability

Elevated

Social unrest is rare in Seychelles; however, peaceful demonstrations are likely in the run-up to December 2020's presidential election. Opposition-led protests are likely over the proposed joint naval base with India on Assumption Island, but are unlikely to turn violent.

Last update: October 30, 2019

Health Risk

Very high

Vaccinations required to enter the country

Proof of vaccination against yellow fever is required for travelers over one year of age arriving from a country with risk of yellow fever (YFV) transmission and for travelers who have been in transit in an airport located in a country with risk of YFV transmission.

Routine Vaccinations

Hepatitis A: A vaccine is available for anyone over one year of age. The vaccine may not be effective for certain people, e.g. those born before 1945 and who lived as a child in a developing country and/or have a past history of jaundice (icterus). These people can instead get a shot of immune globulin (IG) to boost their immunity against the disease.

Hepatitis B: A vaccine is available for children at least two months old.

Diphtheria-Tetanus-Polio: A booster shot should be administered if necessary (once every ten years).

Other Vaccinations

Typhoid Fever: If your travels take you to regions with poor sanitary conditions (for children two years old and up).

Last update: April 5, 2019

Practical Information

Climate

Seychelles enjoys a pleasant tropical climate all year round and is spared from cyclones. From October until March northwesterly trade winds bring heat (32°C) and humidity. The months of December and January are relatively rainy. The rest of the year temperatures are lower (24°C) and southeasterly winds regularly pass over the islands.    

Useful Numbers

Country Code: +248
Police: 999
Fire Dept.: 999
Ambulance: 999

Electricity

Voltage: 240 V ~ 50 Hz

Outlets:

Last update: April 5, 2019