News

27/11/2015

Creating 100,000 new jobs within the coming five years in 10 sectors of the economy through major investment projects to the tune of Rs183 billion and achieving an average growth rate of 5.5 per cent annually as from 2017.

Four key focus areas have been identified, namely addressing unemployment; alleviating poverty; opening up the country and new air access policies; and sustainable development and innovation.

The Prime Minister will personally drive and monitor these initiatives to ensure the nation’s economic well-being.

The economic model chosen for the development of the country, the Prime Minister said, will be centered on a number of core areas to fundamentally transform the economy. These include:

  • A revamped and dynamic manufacturing base for the country;
  • Leveraging on the Exclusive Maritime Economic Zone to develop the Ocean industry;
  • Revisiting the services sector; and
  • Renovating the Innovation, Technology and Communication sector.

Another major feature is the Africa Strategy being adopted to transform Mauritius into a regional platform for trade, investment and services. This would be achieved through enhanced economic exchanges and improved air and sea connectivity, with the eventual creation of both a regional air and shipping company.

Tourism, higher education and developing the potential of Mauritius as a regional hub for healthcare and medical services as well as a medical education centre of excellence for Africa are among identified areas of growth.

The Prime Minister urged the public sector to actively drive and support the new economic agenda. He is relying on the full collaboration of the private sector as well to take the economy to the next level. In that respect he will be chairing a Joint Public-Private Sector Steering Committee which will meet every quarter to discuss issues of national interest.

The Prime Minister emphasised that the success in delivering on Mauritius’ economic agenda will largely depend on the proper mindset and the determination to make things happen. ‘As a Nation, we need to be ambitious; we need to believe in ourselves. Together we delivered the First Economic Miracle, against all odds. And, I have no doubt that we will do it, yet again, TOGETHER’, he concluded.

It is recalled that the High Powered Committee is chaired by the Prime Minister. The Committee will closely monitor project facilitation and implementation and the preparation of a Blueprint for Vision 2030.

Achieving The Second Economic Miracle And Vision 2030: An outline
 

  • Services Sector

The Financial Services Industry is also a key pillar to achieve the second economic miracle. The creation of a new Ministry dedicated to Financial Services and Good Governance is a strong signal to international investors, with a new strategic vision to develop Mauritius into a vibrant and sophisticated International Financial Services Centre of substance. The Financial Services Consultative Council has been reactivated and has since March 2015 addressed a number of burning issues, which had impeded the growth of this industry.

The Double Taxation Avoidance Treaty with South Africa has been ratified on 25 May 2015 to bring more clarity, substance and predictability to international investors using Mauritius as a hub to invest in Africa. Negotiations with India on the tax treaty will be finalised shortly, to provide certainty and substance to investors. As a result of other initiatives implemented by my Government, the industry is already experiencing tangible growth.

From January to the end of July 2015, the FSC issued 1,680 licenses, which represents a 10% increase compared to 2014.

The National Stock Exchange of India and the Stock Exchange of Mauritius are entering into a partnership to list and trade International financial products in US dollars in Mauritius. Next week, on 2nd September 2015, a high-level delegation led by the Chief Executive of the National Stock Exchange of India will be in Mauritius to sign a Memorandum of Understanding with the Stock Exchange of Mauritius, the FSC and the Ministry of Financial Services.

This MoU will unlock opportunities for capacity building, surveillance, enforcement and development of an “African Index Listing” as well, as “NIFTY” listings in Mauritius. Similar initiatives are underway with the Johannesburg Stock Exchange and the Singaporean Stock Exchange.

  • Manufacturing Sector

Government aims to increase its share from 18% of the economy to 25% within the next three years by revamping the manufacturing base of the country.

  • Ocean Industry

Port Louis harbour will be developed as a major port for the region so as to handle much higher traffic and other port-related activities. As regards the fishing sector, Government is negotiating with major international fishing companies for the setting up of fishing and seafood processing facilities locally.

  • Innovation, Technology and Communication sector

The focus will move towards the provision of high end activities like software and animation development, big data analytics, disaster recovery and cloud computing, amongst others.

Initiatives include establishing a techno entrepreneurship culture in Mauritius especially among the youth by supporting the creation of high-end and state-of-the-art incubators; and transforming Mauritius into a SMART island to embed the use of technology in the day-to-day life of every Mauritian.

  • New air access policies

The new air access policies will take into account both the national interests and economic growth. This will not only help to drive more traffic into Mauritius but further diversify the tourism and hospitality industry, fuel duty free shopping initiative and develop the country as an aviation hub with all the linked benefits.

  • Job Creation

Some 40 major private sector investment projects to the tune of Rs183 billion, are in the pipeline, of which foreign direct investments represent Rs140 billion. These projects will have the potential of creating 100,000 new direct and indirect jobs within the coming five years. The ten major sectors of job creation are: Financial services (15,000), ICT (15,000), Ocean Economy (25,000), Tourism (8,000), Manufacturing (5,000), Construction and Property Development (15,000), Health, Wellness and Biotechnology (2,000), Education and Knowledge (3,000), Logistics (3,000) and SME (9,000).

For Financial Year 2015-2016 only, some 16,000 new jobs are being created. As regards the public sector, more than 7,000 vacancies will be filled in the 2015-2016 period.

  • Sustainable development

The Public Sector Investment Programme for the next five years amounts to some 75 billion rupees. These heavy investments in the water sector, electricity, waste management, wastewater management, roads, port, airport and communication, amongst others, have already been announced and are being accelerated.

Works under the Road Decongestion Programme will kick off next year, in July at latest, and Government will invest Rs 15 billion over the next five years to address the road congestion problem.

(Source: Government of Mauritius, August 2015)