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|The people of the Seychelles are called Seychellois. They are a mixture of Asians, Africans, Europeans. French and English are the official languages of the country.|
Pre-trial detainees/remand prisoners
The table below gives an indication of the recent trend in the pre-trial/remand prison population. The final row shows the latest figures available.
It consists of the number of pre-trial/remand prisoners in the prison population on a single date in the year (or the annual average) and the percentage of the total prison population that pre-trial/remand prisoners constituted on that day.
The final column shows the pre-trial/remand population rate per 100,000 of the national population.
(per 100,000 of
It should be noted that the number of pre-trial/remand prisoners fluctuates from day to day, month to month and year to year. Consequently the above figures give an indication of the trend but the picture is inevitably incomplete.
The pre-trial/remand population rate is calculated on the basis of the national population total. All national population figures are inevitably estimates but the estimates used in the World Prison Brief are based on official national figures, United Nations figures or figures from other recognised international authorities.
Female prison population: trend
The table below gives an indication of the trend in the female prison population. The final row shows the latest figures available.
It consists of the number of female prisoners in the prison population on a single date in the year (or the annual average) and the percentage of the total prison population that female prisoners constituted on that day.
The final column shows the female prison population rate per 100,000 of the national population.
(per 100,000 of
Population of Seychelles 2021
Seychelles, officially the Republic of Seychelles, is an archipelagic island country in the Indian Ocean at the eastern edge of the Somali Sea. It consists of 115 islands & the smallest population of any sovereign African country. As per the World Population Prospects, 2019 by the United Nations, the population of Seychelles in 2020 is 98,340 (98 thousand)
Source: World Population Prospects 2019
Read about Top Countries by Population 2021
Seychelles Population 2021
Seychelles has a population growth rate during 2020-2021 of -0.11%. Its estimated population in 2021 is 37,797,000 (37.8 million). The total Land Area of Seychelles is 455 Km2 (176 sq. miles) & the Population Density of Seychelles is 214 per Km 2 (554 people per mi 2 ).
Population of in 2021 – 3.78 Crores (Approx)
|Total Population||98,340 (98 thousand)|
|Share of World Pop.||–|
|Land Area||311,888 sq.km (120,421 sq. mi)|
|Pop. Density||214 people/sq. km|
Source: World Population Prospects 2019
|Infant mortality rate **||9.9|
|Median Age||41.7 Years|
|Life Expectancy||73.74 years|
*Fertility rate, average number of children born to women during their reproductive years.
**Infant mortality rate is the number of deaths per 1,000 live births of children under one year of age.
Religion in Seychelles
Religion in Seychelles
- Roman Catholicism – 76.2%
- Anglican – 6.1%
- Other Christian – 6.9%
- Hinduism – 2.4%
- Islam – 1.6%
- Other – 1.1%
- No religion – 0.9%
- Not stated – 4.8%
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The Republic of Seychelles lies northeast of Madagascar, an archipelago of 115 islands with almost 98,000 citizens, three-quarters of whom live on the main island of Mahé. Seychelles has the highest gross domestic product (GDP) per capita in Africa, at $12.3 billion (2020).). Seychelles is highly dependent on tourism, and climate change poses long-term sustainability risks.
Independent since 1976, the Seychelles is a relatively young democracy: the first multiparty presidential election was held in 1993 after the adoption of a new constitution. The latest presidential and parliamentary elections took place in October 2020. The election brought an opposition candidate, Wavel Ramkalawan, to the Presidency for the first time since the introduction of democratic elections. Ramkalawan’s party, Linyon Demokratic Sesel, also won the majority of seats in the national parliament.
Economic developments and outlook
Following the economic crisis and resulting sovereign debt default in 2008, the Republic of Seychelles through a prudent reform program made significant progress in achieving economic stability and fiscal sustainability. As a result, the economy grew by an average rate of 4.2% per annum between 2009 and 2019.
The economic and social shock from COVID-19 (coronavirus) on the Seychellois economy is severe. Economic growth declined significantly in 2020 to -13.5% from 3.9% in 2019 due to the significant disruptions in economic activities in Seychelles, driven by lower tourism activities which declined by more than 60%. In addition, the fiscal deficit widened to 22.6% of gross domestic product (GDP) in 2020 on account of lower revenues and higher COVID-19-related spending and is projected to be 15.3% in 2021. Recovery is expected to gradually begin in 2021 driven by a resumption of tourism and related capital flows. If unmitigated, the poor are expected to bear a disproportionate impact of the economic shock. According to the 2013 household survey, about six out of 10 poor individual have a job, mostly in informal activities in the service sector that are expected to experience significant declines.
While the immediate priority is the containment of COVID-19 and recovery from its economic and social impact on the country, a focus on longer term structural issues is also warranted for a strong and resilient recovery.
Among Seychelles’ development challenges is the importance to focus on greater productivity, participation and performance of its economy as means to increasing shared prosperity. Some of the main institutional challenges in this regard are notably barriers to open and operate businesses, inefficiencies in public sector management, such as limited statistical capacity, scope for a more strategic and sustainable approach to social protection, as well as the need to broaden access to quality education and skills development. Climate change adaptation, including through strengthened disaster preparedness systems and enhanced coastal management, is also key.
World Bank Group Engagement in Seychelles
The overarching objective of the World Bank Group’s (WBG) Seychelles Country Partnership Framework FY18-FY23, prepared in close consultation with the government, private sector and other development stakeholders, is to consolidate the country’s path to inclusive and sustainable prosperity. To that end, the strategy delineates two mutually reinforcing focus areas, namely shared prosperity, and inclusion and public-sector performance. This entails retooling the core economy of fisheries and tourism for sustainability and inclusion, along the lines of the government’s Blue Economy flagship program, and to strengthen management and resilience of natural endowments.
The CPF supports a shift in focus towards building the human capital of the bottom 40% of the population to enable them to participate in new expanding opportunities. Finally, it seeks to consolidate resilience in public finances by increasing their efficiency, improving the regulatory capacity of the state to foster space for the private sector, and setting the foundations for transparency and accountability.
As a means to support the country’s response to the social and economic fallout caused by COVID-19, the WBG disbursed a $7 million Catastrophe Drawdown Loan (Cat-DDO) in April 2020 and provided an additional $15 million credit from the International Bank for Reconstruction and Development (IBRD) in July 2020. The Development Policy Lending is utilized to enhance the country’s response mechanisms in health, social protection and private sector, and to support the country’s post-crisis recovery through strengthened financial systems and climate resilience.
Under the South West Indian Ocean Fisheries Governance and Shared Growth Program (SWIOFish3), the Bank is supporting the management and conservation of marine areas and strengthening seafood value chains in the Seychelles. The project is co-financed by a Seychelles Blue Bond ($15 million), which is supported by a $5 million guarantee from the International Bank of Reconstruction and Development and a further $5 million concessional loan from the Global Environment Facility (GEF). This first ever sovereign Blue Bond was issued by the government of Seychelles in October 2018. The Blue Bond is an innovative financing mechanism to mobilize private sector investment to support the ocean economy. The proceeds are used to capitalize a Blue Grants Fund and a Blue Investment Fund managed by the Seychelles Conservation and Climate Adaptation Trust (SeyCCAT) and the Development Bank of Seychelles (DBS).
Proceeds from the bond will include support for the expansion of marine protected areas, improved governance of priority fisheries and the development of the Seychelles’ blue economy through activities such as promotion of best practices, implementation of fisheries management plans, stock rebuilding, improvement of value-chains and aquaculture development.
The World Bank works in collaboration with other development partners of Seychelles, including with the International Monetary Fund (IMF).
UNESCO: Seychelles is only country in Africa to achieve education for all
(Seychelles News Agency) - Seychelles is the only country in Africa that has already fully achieved education for all, in line with the six Education For All (EFA) goals set out by the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization, UNESCO, for attainment in 2015, according to a new report published by UNESCO’s Regional Office in Dakar.
According to the most recent statistics in 2012, the level of literacy in Seychelles has reached 94 percent.
At the World Education Forum (Dakar, 2000), 164 governments from all over the world pledged to meet six EFA goals by 2015.
The goals are: to improve early childhood care and education ensuring that all children have access to free compulsory primary education meeting the learning needs of young people and adults achieving a 50 percent improvement in levels of adult literacy achieving gender equality in education by 2015 and improving all aspects of the quality of education, particularly in literacy, numeracy and essential life skills.
As for the rest of Africa, the report published by UNESCO’s Regional Office in Dakar says that the challenges remain daunting as the primary school cycle is currently completed by less than 70 percent of African primary-aged children. The Dakar office estimates that 53 million children and youths are not in the schooling system. In addition to these numbers, 182 million adults are illiterate,
UNESCO says that if the current rate of progress continues, only 31 out of 44 African countries might achieve the EFA goals by 2020.
The report was published prior to a Global Education for All meeting, which is set to take place in Muscat, Oman, from 12-14 May 2014.
“We have come far and much progress has been achieved but Education for All in Africa remains an unfinished business,” said the Director of UNESCO Dakar, Ann Therese Ndong-Jatta, in a video interview on the occasion of the report.
UNESCO has tried to accelerate progress in Africa by implementing a framework known as the Big Push in October 2012. In March 2013, African countries met in Dakar to develop national plans for the acceleration process.
At the same time, the body has recognized the need to move from global targets to targets that are more attainable in various regions.
"In a situation of 20 years of Education for All and only one African country has met the target, it is a clear indication that probably there is something wrong with the target. In the post-2015, we need to make the targets more realistic to the context and realities of the various regions," Ndong-Jatta added.
The small African islands' education policies
Some older generations of Seychellois received little to no formal education during their youth, but a government drive in the late 1980s to improve the adult literacy rate convinced many adults to attend adult literacy classes, improving the rate dramatically by the early Nineties.
In Seychelles today, a system of free education has been in effect since 1981, which is compulsory up to the age of 16 and free through secondary school until the age of 18. Students must pay for uniforms, but not for books or tuition.
There are 33 public schools in the archipelago. There are however 3 private schools that offers primary and secondary schooling for those who have a higher income.
Since September 2009 the Indian Ocean island nation also started to offer tertiary education following the setting up the University of Seychelles.
- Region: Africa
- Population: 96,762 (2018)
- Area: 452 square kilometres
- Capital: Victoria
- Joined Commonwealth: 1976, following independence from Britain
- Commonwealth Youth Index: 30 out of 49 countries
Advisers at the Commonwealth Small States Office (CSSO) in Geneva helped Seychelles prepare to report on human rights in the country under the United Nation’s Universal Periodic Review (UPR) process.
The Secretariat advised Seychelles on reform of its laws on cybercrime and intellectual property. It also helped Seychelles draft a law to address the problem of male violence against women and girls.
The Secretariat produced a publication on anti-corruption which included Seychelles as a case study. It also sent an expert to help investigations at the Anti-Corruption Commission of Seychelles.
The Secretariat helped Seychelles strengthen school councils and build skills to improve state school management.
The Secretariat hired a consultant to help Seychelles collect data to measure the economic cost of violence against women and girls (VAWG). It developed a tool to measure this cost with Seychelles as the first case study.
In 2019, the Secretariat gave Seychelles advice on World Trade Organization reform and disputes, trade negotiations and emerging trade issues.
In 2018-19, the Secretariat sent an expert to Seychelles to advise on using its ocean resources sustainably. It is also helping Seychelles to share knowledge on sustainable energy with other member states.
Seychelles champions the Action Group on Marine Protected Areas (MPAs).
In 2020, the island nation set aside 30 per cent of its marine territory, or about 410,000 square kilometres, to be legally protected from activities that damage the marine environment.
Seychelles achievement of 30 per cent coverage is far beyond international targets of 10 per cent by the end of 2020.
Seychelles is also a member of the Commonwealth Clean Ocean Alliance, Ocean Acidification, Sustainable Aquaculture and Sustainable Blue Economy Action Groups.
In the north-east of Mahé, bordered on one side by steep mountain slopes, is the capital of the Republic of the Seychelles. At first glance, it isn't really clear just how important the city is as the country's cultural and administrative centre there are only two dozen streets, which not only characterises the cosy feel of the city but of the Seychellois way of life itself. With the spirit of 'Beauty Acts Silently' coursing through the veins of the city, visitors will struggle to find anything in terms of parking garages, neon signs, or showmanship in general the city only has two traffic lights! That said, with around 25,000 inhabitants, Victoria is still the largest settlement in the Seychelles, and its only city. Its foundation harks back to the French settler period in 1778, before it was later given its name by the British, after Queen Victoria.
These days, this 'backwater' has grown up, with a small, lively market offering fish, fruit and vegetables, restaurants, offices, banks, and shops. At its eastern edge, Victoria opens up onto the harbour and the ocean, containing the Sainte Anne Marine National Park. The New Pier welcomes cruise ships, large freighters, and tankers, serving as the main trading port for the country. In terms of exports, the Seychelles sells spices, vanilla, coconuts, coconut oil, soap, tuna, and cinnamon bark. The city's surrounding urban area contains numerous amenities and attractions, including the International Airport, the Botanical Gardens, a university, museums, places of worship, offices belonging to tourism companies, airlines, and banks, and finally a cinema and shops.
In terms of its design, the town is mostly dominated by stone and wooden houses from the early 20th century, which paint a colourful picture thanks to their colourful facades, shutters, and balustrades. Walking through the streets past these buildings, you will surely pick up the scent of various exciting spice aromas, often emanating from small grocery stores where you can stock up on supplies. In the morning at around 8.00, as well as in the afternoon at 16.00, you will probably notice a more lively version of Victoria. At this time, many people go shopping or drink coffees. That said, this drama does not last very long, because, at 17.00 (or 18.00 at the latest) most establishments close their shutters and the Seychelles capital closes down for the evening. At this time, you can choose to round off your day with an exotic cocktail in a small bar or at the harbour, or look for evening entertainment at the nightclub or in the slot machine hall.
Victoria has two main centres, one of which revolves around the Clock Tower, a replica of the clock tower at Vauxhall Bridge in London and a symbol of the Seychelles that lies in the middle of the northern roundabout. In this area, you can find banks, the post office, the Palace of Justice, and the Pirates Arms snack restaurant on Independence Avenue.
Almost opposite here is the National Museum, while a little further along the road lie some travel agencies and the tourist information centre, where you can find maps for hiking trails. The second centre surrounds the Sir Selwyn Selwyn Clarke Market, which is around five minutes' walk away from the clock tower. This market is well-worth a visit, especially early on a Saturday morning, when a veritable hive of activity is on offer, including fish, spices, and exotic fruits for sale.
From the market, head north on Revolution Avenue, where more snack restaurants, travel agencies, and a large supermarket await. This road leads out of town over the St. Louis pass, before snaking down into Beau Vallon. From the peak here, around 300 metres (985 ft) above sea level, visitors can admire Victoria by taking a walk under the summit of the Trois Frères mountains.
Through land-reclamation, new areas were created in the northern part of the harbour basin, on which a large sports complex, tennis courts, a swimming centre, and a multi-purpose hall were built. In the process, the adjacent district of Roche Caiman saw around 2,000 residential units spring up, something that the ever-expanding city desperately needed and that curbed construction in Mahé's mountainous regions. Eden Island, located to the south of Victoria, is a more up-market version of this new residential area, offering contemporary design, luxury villas, elegant bars and restaurants, a marina, and a shopping centre.
Victoria is undoubtedly worth exploring a little more closely, and here are a few spots that offer exciting cultural and historical information to the Seychelles holidaymaker.
Arul Mihu Navasakthi Vinayagar Temple
One of the most-visited sites in the Seychelles and one of the most-admired, certainly by photographers, is the colourful, decorated temple roof to the Hindu God Vinayagar. This brightly-coloured construction at Quincy Street was built in 1992, and serves as the place of worship for around 5,000 Hindus living in Victoria. Those willing to take off their shoes and leave them at the entrance may visit the small temple outside of ceremony hours.
Bel Air Cemetery
Located on Bel Air Road is an area containing crumbling tombs and sarcophagi, where the citizens from the first days of Victoria were laid to rest. Among them was a mythical person called the 'Giant of Bel Air'. It is told that he was almost 3 metres (10 ft) tall at just 16 years old, could carry large fishing boats alone, and lifted bags of rice with just one finger. His grave is located in the central, elevated part of the cemetery, and the cemetery in general is a Seychelles national monument.
The cemetery is the oldest historic site in Seychelles
This statue can be found in Freedom Square, at the eastern end of Independence Avenue. The statue consists of three pairs of extended white wings, and was built in 1978 to commemorate the 200th anniversary of Victoria. The monument was created by Italian artist Lorenzo Appiani, who lived in the Seychelles at the time. The three wings symbolise the origins of the Seychelles' population, and represent the three continents represented in the country: Africa, Europe, and Asia.
In the middle of the intersection of Independence Avenue and Albert Street stands the Clock Tower (French: l'Horloge, Creole: Lorloz), now a symbol of the island's capital. It was erected in 1903 to honour the Queen. Despite often taking the name 'Little Big Ben', it is actually based on the less-famous clock tower in London, located at the intersection of Victoria Street and Vauxhall Bridge Road since 1897. The governor of the time saw the clock on a visit to London and ordered the smaller copy to be made. A special quirk of the clock is that it strikes twice on the hour, instead of once, inspiring the chorus of the song "Going back to the Seychelles, where the clock strikes twice".
The Clock Tower in Victoria
Cathedral of Our Lady of Immaculate Conception
The largest Catholic church in the Seychelles, built in 1892 and renovated in the mid-1990s, is located in a slightly elevated position at the edge of the city. The design of the cathedral harks back to Seyhellois architect Gilbert Frichot, while the tabernacles and doors were designed by sculptor Egbert Marday. Brilliant colours shimmer through the stained-glass windows of the building, which is surrounded by a beautiful garden. Beside the cathedral lies the two-storey Priest house, La Domus, built in 1934. This house consists of granite, and can legitimately be claimed to be one of the most impressive buildings in the Seychelles. The church serves as a quiet, contemplative space, not far from the bustle of the market, and one that is primarily used by women for worship or to lay down flowers. The bell tower is located behind the building, and dates back to 1898, while the small house next door was built in 1933. The church itself is large enough for around 700 worshippers.
Cathedral of Our Lady of Immaculate Conception
Next to the Cable & Wireless building is Kenwyn House, renovated to remain in-keeping with its original style, and undoubtedly one of the most beautiful buildings displaying French colonial architecture. Inside, you will find an exclusive souvenir shop where you can buy precious items such as South African jewellery, while the house's art gallery displays Seychellois painting exhibitions.
Exhibition in the Kenwyn House
Mosque in Victoria
Mahé is home to many different religious beliefs which co-exist in harmony, hence this small mosque in Victoria. The gilded dome of the building really contrasts the green that surrounds it.
National Museum of History
Here, you can discover more about the history and development of the city. Prehistoric maps, old firearms, and other commodities are among the exhibits on show in the modern building of the National Library.
The National Museum of History is located inside the National Cultural Centre
National Botanical Gardens
The green jewel of the city should definitely be on the agenda for all who visit Mahé. Here, you can get an overview of the different Seychelles flora species, as well as discover some of the local wildlife. At the entrance, you can pick up a brochure detailing the domestic and foreign plant species (a combined total of around 500 plants), including 40 species of palm trees. If you want to see everything, we recommend one or two hours. Some of the beautiful sights on offer include breadfruit, papaya, and nutmeg trees, Indian tamarind, exotic plants and ornamentals, and of course the famous Coco de Mer palm tree. Besides that, the comprehensive orchid garden offers 150 different species, while native birds and bats can be admired in the upper regions of the gardens. The tour concludes with a large enclosure, in which giant Aldabra tortoises live.
National Botanical Gardens
The garden was founded in 1901 by botanist Paul Dupont of Mauritius, who wanted to draw attention to the monoculture of coconut and vanilla cultivation in the Seychelles. Nowadays, this 10,000 square metre refuge promotes biodiversity and preservation. The plants that Dupont brought with him form the basis of today's park, which can be found on Mont Fleuri Road, south of the city. At its highest point, you can purchase hot and cold drinks, as well as lunch and dinner.
National Library Building
A modern steel/glass structure that lies on the corner of Francis Rachel Street/4th June Avenue houses an extensive library. Anyone who wishes to delve into the history, geography, culture, or literature of the Seychelles in air-conditioned surroundings should stop off here during their trip. Since 1995, the archive has been open to the public, and admission is free.
National Library Building
Seychelles Natural History Museum
Next to the main post office on Independence Avenue is a small museum, containing replicas, images, plants, and taxidermied animals. While not the most exciting exhibition, anyone interested in history or geography will find something to enjoy here, with ship models, maps, photographs, drawings and documents from historical periods. The so called 'Pierre de Possession' - the 'Stone of Seizure' - is probably the most important exhibit. This stone was installed in 1756 to symbolise the possession of the Seychelles by the French royal family. Another exhibit is the 180 million year-old granite stone that was found in 1981 while test-drilling for oil. This serves as proof that the rocks in the Seychelles and the plateau on which the islands stand are among the oldest formations on Earth, as well as strengthening the theory that the islands used to be part of Gondwana, the supercontinent.
Seychelles Natural History Museum
Around 200 m (656 ft) west of the Clock Tower lies an entrance gate, behind which a lush, landscaped garden and statehouse, built in 1913, can be found. Formerly the residence of British governors, since the 1970s the building has served as the President's home and working space, so you can generally only see it from afar. That said, it can sometimes be worthwhile asking in one of the city's travel agencies for their help in getting a little closer, as the glorious idyll that can be found on-site is uniquely beautiful. All guests of the government have handed over various gifts over the years, including flowers, shrubs, and trees, and all of these have been given a place here and are carefully maintained.
St. Paul’s Cathedral
This church is located on Revolution Avenue, opposite the Clock Tower, and is the oldest and largest Anglican church in the Seychelles, and considered the second landmark of the archipelago. Consecrated in 1859 by the first Anglican Bishop of Mauritius, and subjected to a renovation in the early 21st century, the church now seats 800, twice as many as before. Since 1920, the Seychelles and Mauritius have shared their own diocese, with St. Paul serving as the second bishop's see.
Sir Selwyn Selwyn Clarke Market
One of the two 'city centres' in Victoria runs through the middle of the city in the shade of a large mango tree, around the Sir Selwyn Selwyn Clarke Market. Built in 1840, the market was named after a French governor who built the stands himself for the local farmers and fishermen to use to sell their goods. Nowadays, the stalls have become more commercial, and are rarely run by the farmers themselves, but rather by merchants. Even early in the morning, the market is awash with people and stalls containing fruits, vegetables, spices, and artisanal works. The colourful, aromatic displays consist of limes, bananas, papaya, mango, passion fruit, guava, pineapple, sweet potato, aubergine, breadfruit, fish, chilli, star anise, tamarind, cinnamon, vanilla pods, hats, baskets, carvings, postcards, clothing, and much more! From the first floor of the market, you can look down on the hustle and bustle below, as well as enjoy souvenir shops and craft booths. Besides that, there's a quality café where you can sit and enjoy the intense colours, sounds, and smells of the market while enjoying breakfast or a snack for lunch.
Seychelles Government, History, Population & Geography
party to: Biodiversity, Climate Change, Desertification, Endangered Species, Hazardous Wastes, Law of the Sea, Marine Dumping, Nuclear Test Ban, Ozone Layer Protection, Ship Pollution, Whaling
signed, but not ratified: Climate Change-Kyoto Protocol
Geographynote: 40 granitic and about 50 coralline islands
Population: 78,641 (July 1998 est.)
0-14 years: 30% (male 11,787 female 11,694)
15-64 years: 64% (male 24,555 female 25,681)
65 years and over: 6% (male 1,700 female 3,224) (July 1998 est.)
Population growth rate: 0.67% (1998 est.)
Birth rate: 19.71 births/1,000 population (1998 est.)
Death rate: 6.61 deaths/1,000 population (1998 est.)
Net migration rate: -6.36 migrant(s)/1,000 population (1998 est.)
at birth: 1.03 male(s)/female
under 15 years: 1 male(s)/female
15-64 years: 0.95 male(s)/female
65 years and over: 0.52 male(s)/female (1998 est.)
Infant mortality rate: 17 deaths/1,000 live births (1998 est.)
Life expectancy at birth:
total population: 70.76 years
male: 66.13 years
female: 75.53 years (1998 est.)
Total fertility rate: 1.98 children born/woman (1998 est.)
noun: Seychellois (singular and plural)
Ethnic groups: Seychellois (mixture of Asians, Africans, Europeans)
Religions: Roman Catholic 90%, Anglican 8%, other 2%
Languages: English (official), French (official), Creole
definition: age 15 and over can read and write
total population: 58%
female: 60% (1971 est.)
conventional long form: Republic of Seychelles
conventional short form: Seychelles
Government type: republic
National capital: Victoria
Administrative divisions: 23 administrative districts Anse aux Pins, Anse Boileau, Anse Etoile, Anse Louis, Anse Royale, Baie Lazare, Baie Sainte Anne, Beau Vallon, Bel Air, Bel Ombre, Cascade, Glacis, Grand' Anse (on Mahe Island), Grand' Anse (on Praslin Island), La Digue, La Riviere Anglaise, Mont Buxton, Mont Fleuri, Plaisance, Pointe La Rue, Port Glaud, Saint Louis, Takamaka
Independence: 29 June 1976 (from UK)
National holiday: National Day, 18 June (1993) (adoption of new constitution)
Constitution: 18 June 1993
Legal system: based on English common law, French civil law, and customary law
Suffrage: 17 years of age universal
chief of state: President France Albert RENE (since 5 June 1977) notethe president is both the chief of state and head of government
head of government: President France Albert RENE (since 5 June 1977) notethe president is both the chief of state and head of government
cabinet: Council of Ministers appointed by the president
elections: president elected by popular vote for a five-year term election last held 20-22 March 1998 (next to be held by NA 2003)
election results: President France Albert RENE reelected percent of voteFrance Albert RENE (SPPF) 61%, Wavel RAMKALAWAN 27%, Sir James MANCHAM (DP) 12%
Legislative branch: unicameral National Assembly or Assemblee Nationale (35 seats, 25 popularly elected by direct vote, 10 allocated on a proportional basis to parties winning at least 9 percent of the vote members serve five-year terms)
elections: last held 20-22 March 1998 (next to be held by NA 2003)
election results: percent of vote by partyNA seats by party (elected)SPPF 24, DP 1 seats by party (awarded)SPPF 6, DP 1, UO 3
note: the 10 awarded seats are apportioned according to the share of each party in the total vote
Judicial branch: Court of Appeal, judges are appointed by the president Supreme Court, judges are appointed by the president
Political parties and leaders: ruling partySeychelles People's Progressive Front or SPPF [France Albert RENE] Democratic Party or DP United Opposition or UO [Wavel RAMKALAWAN] - a coalition of the following parties: Seychelles Party or PS [Wavel RAMKALAWAN], Seychelles Democratic Movement or MSPD [Jacques HONDOUL], and Seychelles Liberal Party or SLP [Ogilvie BERLOUIS] New Democratic Party [Christopher GILL (former member of DP)]
Political pressure groups and leaders: trade unions Roman Catholic Church
International organization participation: ACCT, ACP, AfDB, C, ECA, FAO, G-77, IBRD, ICAO, ICFTU, ICRM, IFAD, IFC, IFRCS, ILO, IMF, IMO, InOC, Intelsat (nonsignatory user), Interpol, IOC, NAM, OAU, UN, UNCTAD, UNESCO, UNIDO, UPU, WCL, WHO, WMO, WToO, WTrO (applicant)
Diplomatic representation in the US:
chief of mission: Ambassador Claude MOREL
chancery: (temporary) care of the Permanent Mission of Seychelles to the United Nations, 820 Second Avenue, Suite 900F, New York, NY 10017
telephone:  (212) 972-1785
FAX:  (212) 972-1786
Diplomatic representation from the US: the US does not have an embassy in Seychelles the ambassador to Mauritius is accredited to the Seychelles
Flag description: five oblique bands of blue (hoist side), yellow, red, white, and green (bottom) radiating from the bottom of the hoist side
Economyoverview: Since independence in 1976, per capita output in this Indian Ocean archipelago has expanded to roughly seven times the old near-subsistence level. Growth 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, which accounted for 70% of GDP in 1996-97. In recent years the government has encouraged foreign investment in order 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. The vulnerability of the tourist sector was illustrated by the sharp drop in 1991-92 due largely to the Gulf war. Although the industry has rebounded, the government recognizes the continuing need for upgrading the sector in the face of stiff international competition.
GDP: purchasing power parity$550 million (1997 est.)
GDPreal growth rate: NA%
GDPper capita: purchasing power parity$7,000 (1997 est.)
GDPcomposition by sector:
services: 81% (1994)
Inflation rateconsumer price index: -0.3% (1995 est.)
total: 26,000 (1996)
by occupation: industry 19%, services 57%, government 14%, fishing, agriculture, and forestry 10% (1989)
Unemployment rate: NA%
revenues: $220 million
expenditures: $241 million, including capital expenditures of $36 million (1994 est.)
Industries: fishing tourism processing of coconuts and vanilla, coir (coconut fiber) rope, boat building, printing, furniture beverages
Industrial production growth rate: 4% (1992)
Electricitycapacity: 28,000 kW (1995)
Electricityproduction: 125 million kWh (1995)
Electricityconsumption per capita: 1,719 kWh (1995)
Agricultureproducts: coconuts, cinnamon, vanilla, sweet potatoes, cassava (tapioca), bananas broiler chickens tuna fishing (expansion under way)
total value: $56.1 million ( f.o.b., 1995)
commodities: fish, cinnamon bark, copra, petroleum products (re-exports)
partners: France, UK, China, Germany, Japan (1993)
total value: $238 million (c.i.f., 1995)
commodities: manufactured goods, food, petroleum products, tobacco, beverages, machinery and transportation equipment
partners: China, Singapore, South Africa, UK (1993)
Debtexternal: $170 million (1994 est.)
recipient: ODA, $NA
Currency: 1 Seychelles rupee (SRe) = 100 cents
Exchange rates: Seychelles rupees (SRe) per US$1.1901 (January 1998), 5.0263 (1997), 4.9700 (1996), 4.7620 (1995), 5.0559 (1994), 5.1815 (1993)
Fiscal year: calendar year
Telephones: 13,000 (1995 est.)
domestic: radiotelephone communications between islands in the archipelago
international: direct radiotelephone communications with adjacent island countries and African coastal countries satellite earth stationק Intelsat (Indian Ocean)
Radio broadcast stations: AM 3, FM 0, shortwave 0
Radios: 35,000 (1993 est.)
Television broadcast stations: 2 (in a government network)
Televisions: 6,000 (1993 est.)
total: 280 km
paved: 176 km
unpaved: 104 km (1996 est.)
Ports and harbors: Victoria
Merchant marine: none
Airports: 14 (1997 est.)
Airportswith paved runways:
2,438 to 3,047 m: 1
914 to 1,523 m: 5
under 914 m: 2 (1997 est.)
Airportswith unpaved runways:
914 to 1,523 m: 2
under 914 m: 4 (1997 est.)
Military branches: Army, Coast Guard, Marines, National Guard, Presidential Protection Unit, Police Force
males age 15-49: 22,107 (1998 est.)
Military manpowerfit for military service:
males: 11,111 (1998 est.)
Military expendituresdollar figure: $13.7 million (1995)
Military expenditurespercent of GDP: NA%
Disputesinternational: claims Chagos Archipelago in British Indian Ocean Territory
Seychelles FactsSeychelles Animals and Plants
The many islands of the Seychelles archipelago are a sanctuary for many rare and unique animals and plants.
There are also the beautiful Seychelles bird called 'Paradise Flycatcher', the black parrots and blue pigeons are just some of the many colourful birds living on the islands. The 'flying foxes' are the only wild animals on the islands.
Then there are the plankton-eating whale shark and giant tortoises which the islands are famous for. The tortoises are in fact not only huge, but also the heaviest land tortoises in the world.
Many of these giant tortoises live on Bird Island, which is known also for its millions of sooty terns.
The islands have several nature reserves to protect the rare animals and plants. Among the unique plants are the "jellyfish trees", of which are only eight trees left and there are the unique palm trees with the huge coco-de-mer seeds.
The ghosts of Moyenne Island
There are a couple of stories of ghosts on Moyenne Island.
The first is that the ghost of Mary Best, an eccentric British woman who owned the island in 1910.
The second and perhaps more interesting story involves the pirates who supposedly buried treasure on the island and killed two of their men so their ghosts would protect the treasure forever. Though this is a known pirate practice, no other sign of treasure has ever been found.
There are two gravestones marked ‘unhappily unknown’ on the island, and this is where these two pirates are said to be buried.
Moyenne was owned by a British man, Brendan Grimshaw, who bought it in 1962 and lived on the island until his death in 2012. He apparently first believed in the ghosts on the island when he heard a voice one night. The ghost’s voice told him to go to Coral Cave on the island at 4 pm and that a turtle would come out and lay her eggs. When he went there at the appointed time, turtle came out at exactly that time.
Grimshaw also told tales of banging noises on his windows and doors, his bed shaking in the night and the sound of footsteps between the cemetery and his house.