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Seychelles

A lengthy struggle between France and Great Britain for the Seychelles islands ended in 1814, when they were ceded to the latter. Independence came in 1976. Single-party rule was brought to a close with a new constitution and free elections in 1993.

President France-Albert RENE, who had served for the Seychelles Islands since 1977, was re-elected in 2001, but stepped down in 2004. Vice President James Alix MICHEL took over the presidency and in July 2006 was elected to a new five-year term; he was reelected in May 2011.

Since independence in 1976, per capita output in this Indian Ocean archipelago has expanded to roughly seven times the pre-independence, near-subsistence level, moving the island into the upper-middle-income group of countries.

Growth for the Seychelles has been led by the tourist sector, which employs about 30% of the labor force and provides more than 70% of hard currency earnings, and by tuna fishing. In recent years, the government has encouraged foreign investment to upgrade hotels and other services. At the same time, the government has moved to reduce the dependence on tourism by promoting the development of farming, fishing, and small-scale manufacturing.

In 2008, having depleted its foreign exchange reserves, Seychelles defaulted on interest payments due on a $230 million Eurobond, requested assistance from the International Monetary Fund (IMF), and immediately enacted a number of significant structural reforms, including liberalization of the exchange rate, reform of the public sector to include layoffs, and the selling of some state assets.

In December 2013, the IMF declared that Seychelles had successfully transitioned to a market-based economy with full employment and a fiscal surplus.

Seychelles GDP (purchasing power parity):
$2.304 billion (2014 est.)
$2.222 billion (2013 est.)
$2.147 billion (2012 est.)
note: data are in 2014 US dollars
country comparison to the world: 191

Seychelles GDP (official exchange rate):
$1.473 billion (2013 est.)

Seychelles GDP – real growth rate:
3.7% (2014 est.)
3.5% (2013 est.)
2.8% (2012 est.)
* country comparison to the world: 78

Seychelles GDP – per capita (PPP):
$24,500 (2014 est.)
$23,900 (2013 est.)
$23,300 (2012 est.)
note: data are in 2013 US dollars
country comparison to the world: 70

Seychelles Gross national saving:
15% of GDP (2014 est.)
21.4% of GDP (2013 est.)
12.4% of GDP (2012 est.)
country comparison to the world: 113

Seychelles GDP – composition, by end use:
household consumption: 101%
government consumption: 10.2%
investment in fixed capital: 31.4%
investment in inventories: -5.1%
exports of goods and services: 42.1%
imports of goods and services: -79.6%
(2014 est.)

Seychelles GDP – composition, by sector of origin:
agriculture: 3%
industry: 14%
services: 83.1%
(2014 est.)

Seychelles Agriculture – products:
coconuts, cinnamon, vanilla, sweet potatoes, cassava (manioc, tapioca), copra, bananas; tuna

Seychelles Industries:
fishing, tourism, beverages

Seychelles Industrial production growth rate:
3% (2014 est.)
* country comparison to the world: 96

Seychelles Labor force:
39,560 (2006 est.)
* country comparison to the world: 197

Seychelles Labor force – by occupation:
agriculture: 3%
industry: 23%
services: 74% (2006)

Seychelles Unemployment rate:
2% (2006 est.)
* country comparison to the world: 13

Seychelles Population below poverty line:
N/A%

Household income or consumption by percentage share:
lowest 10%: 4.7%
highest 10%: 15.4% (2007)

Budget:
revenues: $498.4 million
expenditures: $474.3 million (2014 est.)

Taxes and other revenues:
33.8% of GDP (2014 est.)
country comparison to the world: 70

Budget surplus (+) or deficit (-):
1.6% of GDP (2014 est.)
country comparison to the world: 17

Public debt:
64.5% of GDP (2014 est.)
65.5% of GDP (2013 est.)
country comparison to the world: 49

Fiscal year:
calendar year

Inflation rate (consumer prices):
2.3% (2014 est.)
4.3% (2013 est.)

Central bank discount rate:
11.17% (31 December 2010)
* country comparison to the world: 15

Commercial bank prime lending rate:
13% (31 December 2014 est.)
12.29% (31 December 2013 est.)
* country comparison to the world: 57

Stock of narrow money:
$435.1 million (31 December 2014 est.)
$431.2 million (31 December 2013 est.)
country comparison to the world: 166

Stock of broad money:
$567.8 million (31 December 2014 est.)
$529.3 million (31 December 2013 est.)
* country comparison to the world: 174

Stock of domestic credit:
$485.1 million (31 December 2014 est.)
$500.8 million (31 December 2013 est.)
country comparison to the world: 168

Market value of publicly traded shares:
$N/A

Current account balance:
-$338.5 million (2014 est.)
-$209.9 million (2013 est.)
country comparison to the world: 101

Exports:
$525.1 million (2014 est.)
$580.2 million (2013 est.)
* country comparison to the world: 173

Exports – partners:
France 27%, UK 19.1%, Italy 11%, Japan 9.1%, Mauritius 7.7%, Spain 4.1% (2013)

Exports – commodities:
canned tuna, frozen fish, petroleum products (reexports)

Imports:
$1.074 billion (2014 est.)
$994.2 million (2013 est.)
country comparison to the world: 178

Imports – commodities:
machinery and equipment, foodstuffs, petroleum products, chemicals, other manufactured goods

Imports – partners:
Saudi Arabia 21.9%, Spain 11.8%, France 7.4%, India 4.7% 2013)

Reserves of foreign exchange and gold:
$496.6 million (31 December 2014 est.)
$425.9 million (31 December 2013 est.)
country comparison to the world: 148

Debt – external:
$2.099 billion (31 December 2014 est.)
$2.049 billion (31 December 2013 est.)
country comparison to the world: 146

Exchange rates:
Seychelles rupees (SCR) per US dollar –
12.44 (2014 est.)
12.058 (2013 est.)
13.7 (2012 est.)
12.381 (2011 est.)
12.068 (2010 est.)

Location:
archipelago in the Indian Ocean, northeast of Madagascar

Geographic coordinates:
4 35 S, 55 40 E

Map references:
Africa

Area:
total: 455 sq km
land: 455 sq km
water: 0 sq km
* country comparison to the world: 199

Area – comparative:
2.5 times the size of Washington, DC

Land boundaries:
0 km

Coastline:
491 km

Maritime claims:
territorial sea: 12 nm
contiguous zone: 24 nm
exclusive economic zone: 200 nm
continental shelf: 200 nm or to the edge of the continental margin

Climate:
tropical marine; humid; cooler season during southeast monsoon (late May to September); warmer season during northwest monsoon (March to May)

Terrain:
Mahe Group is granitic, narrow coastal strip, rocky, hilly; others are coral, flat, elevated reefs

Elevation extremes:
lowest point: Indian Ocean 0 m
highest point: Morne Seychellois 905 m

Natural resources:
fish, coconuts (copra), cinnamon trees

Land use:
agricultural land: 6.5%
arable land 2.2%; permanent crops 4.3%; permanent pasture 0%
forest: 88.5%
other: 5% (2011 est.)

Irrigated land:
2.6 sq km (2003

 

Natural hazards:
lies outside the cyclone belt, so severe storms are rare; occasional short droughts

Environment – current issues:
water supply depends on catchments to collect rainwater

Environment – international agreements:
party to: Biodiversity, Climate Change, Climate Change-Kyoto Protocol, Desertification, Endangered Species, Hazardous Wastes, Law of the Sea, Marine Dumping, Ozone Layer Protection, Ship Pollution, Wetlands
signed, but not ratified: none of the selected agreements

Geography – note:
smallest African country; the constitution of the Republic of Seychelles lists 155 islands: 42 granitic and 113 coralline; by far the largest island is Mahe, which is home to about 90% of the population and the site of the capital city of Victoria

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Mr. Flavien JoubertDirector Generalf.joubert@env.gov.sc+248 670 566
Mrs. Dina BristolPrivate Secretarybristoldina@gmail.com+248) 4321333
Lemmy PayetNational Consultantlkpayet@hotmail.com
Dr. Rolph PayetMinisterrolphap@gmail.com/rolph@gov.sc+ 248 4321333
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