Seychelles: Country and Foreign Investment
Population, Language and Culture
The population of the Seychelles is approximately 90,024 (2012), of whom about 70,000 live on Mahe. The indigenous population is a well-fused mixture of African, Malagasy and French strains; the official languages are a French-based Creole, English and French, with Creole being the most widely used. Business is conducted in French and English.
The islands were known to the Arabs from the 9th century, and after visits by the Portuguese, French and English, the French controlled them until 1814, when British ownership was confirmed. The islands became a British colony in 1903.
The abolition of slavery in 1835 was economically disastrous, but there was gradual progress over the next 100 years, with the population growing from 4,000 in 1840 to 44,000 in 1962. Independence was granted only in 1976, and the islands have developed rapidly since then under a stable government. 46% of the land area is demarcated as National Park or Nature Reserve.