U.S. Relations With Seychelles

Bureau of African Affairs
Fact Sheet
September 20, 2016

More information about Seychelles is available on the Seychelles Page and from other Department of State publications and other sources listed at the end of this fact sheet.


The United States established diplomatic relations with Seychelles in 1976, following Seychelles’ independence from the United Kingdom. The United States and Seychelles enjoy a history of partnership and cooperation based on shared priorities. In the Indian Ocean region, the two countries work together to fight piracy and terrorism, strengthen economies, and promote maritime security.

Seychelles is a small island nation in the Western Indian Ocean with a population of 96,000 and an exclusive economic zone of 1.37 million square kilometers. Seychelles’ tourism- and fishing-based economy is vulnerable to piracy in the region. The Government of Seychelles has therefore entered into several agreements with international partners, including the United States, to protect its territory and economy.

U.S. Assistance to Seychelles

U.S. foreign assistance to Seychelles has focused on maritime security, including training and equipment for Seychelles coast guard, military, and police. The U.S. also provides small grants for community service, cultural programs and civil society development projects, as well as exchange programs to the U.S. for promising leaders and professionals. Seychelles welcomes local U.S.-led education and training opportunities for all its people and benefits from U.S. public diplomacy programs.

Bilateral Economic Relations

Seychelles will no longer be eligible for preferential trade benefits under the African Growth and Opportunity Act (AGOA) after January 1, 2017, having achieved high income status. In 2015, Seychelles imported $18.5 million in goods from the U.S., and exported $5.8 million in goods to the U.S.

Membership in International Organizations

Seychelles and the United States belong to several of the same international organizations, including the United Nations, International Monetary Fund, and World Bank. Seychelles is a full-fledged member of the World Trade Organization.

Bilateral Representation

The U.S. Ambassador to Seychelles is resident in Mauritius, and the position is currently vacant. The Charge d’Affaires is Melanie Zimmerman; other principal embassy officials are listed in the Department's Key Officers List. [*Mauritius’ listing also represents Seychelles. There is currently no listing on the Key Officers List for Seychelles.]  Embassy officers travel frequently to Seychelles ensuring we have a very visible presence.

Seychelles has no embassy in Washington, DC; its permanent representative to the United Nations in New York is also accredited as Ambassador to the United States.

Additional information about Seychelles is available from the Department of State and other sources, some of which are listed here:

Department of State Seychelles Page
Department of State Key Officers List
CIA World Factbook Seychelles Page
U.S. Embassy: Mauritius (Virtual Presence Post - Seychelles)
History of U.S. Relations With Seychelles
Human Rights Reports
International Religious Freedom Reports
Trafficking in Persons Reports
Narcotics Control Reports
U.S. Census Bureau Foreign Trade Statistics
Library of Congress Country Studies
Travel and Business Information
USAID Africa Page