Housing Finance in Seychelles


For the French version of this country profile, click here.

To download a pdf version of the full 2018 Seychelles country profile, click here.

The Republic of Seychelles (Seychelles) is a small country, comprising 115 islands scattered over 1 million square kilometres of seain the Indian Ocean, northeast of Madagascar.

Seychelleshas a relatively well-developed financial system overseen by two regulators namely the Central Bank of Seychelles and the Financial Services Authority. As at December 2017, the Seychelles financial structure comprised 10 banks (only nine banks in operation), one credit union, two non-bank credit institutions, 15 payment service providers and 27 bureaux de change. Eight out of the 10 banks were privately and primarily foreign-ownedwhile the Government of Seychelles held majority ownership in the other two banks.

A Financial Literacy Baseline Survey conducted by FinMark Trust in 2016 revealed Seychelles to be the most financially included country in the Southern African Development Community, as 94percentof Seychellois are banked.  The study also found that 75 percentof Seychellois earn regular and consistent income from formal channels such as government jobs, employment at private companies, receiving salaries from another individual, or self-employment.

Approximately 67 percentof adults make use of credit from banks. They may also access credit from other sources. Six percentaccess credit from informal credit providers, while approximately three percentexclusively rely on credit from family and friends.

According to the latest National Bureau of Statistics figures, Seychelleshas 25 929 houses. Of these, 87 percentare made of stone/block and 13 percentof wood/iron. The housing market in Seychelles is still rudimentary. Most people prefer to build and move into new accommodation; existing accommodation is purchased primarily for rental purposes.

The Seychellois property market is strong, driven primarily by the tourist industry. Real estate websites advertise properties in US dollars or euros, and investors buy new and existing properties, as well as land. Land in the country is in great demand, and the tourism and agricultural industries compete with the housing industry for sites. Conflicts over land and housing are set to deepen as the urbanisation rate continues to grow. There is no legislation governing the minimum size of a plot of land.

The Ministry of Land Use and Housing is intent, through a variety of measures, on ensuring access to adequate housing for all Seychellois. Though the government continues to develop innovative programmes to address the demand for affordable housing, there is a need to increase capacity to meet the considerable demand in the affordable and low income markets.

In a bid to open the country to more foreign investment, recent changes in the law of property ownership have been approved to offer freehold title and residency rights to foreign owners and their immediate families.

Find out more information on the housing finance sector of Seychelles, including key stakeholders, important policies and housing affordability:

Each year, CAHF publishes its Housing Finance in Africa Yearbook. The profile above is from the 2018 edition, which has up-to-date profiles for 54 African countries.

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