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Cabinet Decisions - 14 November 2014

Date: November 14, 2014


1.         Cabinet has taken note that the inscription of the Traditional Mauritian Sega (Sega Tipik) in the UNESCO Representative List of Intangible Cultural Heritage of Humanity would be examined at the 9th Session of the Intergovernmental Committee for the Safeguarding of the Intangible Cultural Heritage to be held at the UNESCO Headquarters, Paris from 24 to 28 November 2014.  The dossier for the Bhojpuri Folk Songs, which was also submitted, would be examined in the 2015-2016 cycle at UNESCO.  With the listing of the elements of Intangible Cultural Heritage, States Parties, with the collaboration of the community, NGOs, artists and other relevant stakeholders, are bound to implement measures to preserve and promote the elements and their visibility.  In line with the UNESCO Convention on Intangible Cultural Heritage, 117 elements have, so far, been identified to form part of the inventory of Intangible Cultural Heritage and classified under the following five domains -  
(a)       Oral traditions and expressions;    
(b)       Performing arts;
(c)        Social practices, rituals and festive events;
(d)       Knowledge and practices concerning nature and universe; and
(e)       Traditional craftsmanship and occupations.
2.         Cabinet has taken note of the status of the construction of the new University campuses, and agreed to the allocation of the campuses as follows -
            (a)       the Montagne Blanche campus to the IIT Research Academy, which will become a full-fledged IIT in 2015;
            (b)       the Pamplemousses campus for courses in medical engineering and instrumentation courses  to be run by the Université des Mascareignes in collaboration with the Université de Limoges;
            (c)        the new Reduit campus to accommodate -
(i)         a centre for nanotechnology to be used by the University of Mauritius, and the Université des Mascareignes, in collaboration with the IIT Kanpur, the University of Southern Denmark, the Wright State University, USA, the University of Tokyo and the Imperial College, London;
(ii)        a centre for  space studies to be used by the University of Mauritius, in collaboration with IIT Delhi and the Peking University; 
(iii)       a data centre to be operated by the Open University, in collaboration with the University of California, San Diego; and  
(iv)       the Piton Campus to accommodate a Centre of Biotechnology.
3.         Cabinet has taken note that the Université des Mascareignes and the Université de Limoges, France have signed the Convention d’Association, providing, amongst others, for -
(a)       the Université de Limoges to support the Université des Mascareignes to set up its governance, pedagogical and research programmes following the European System LMD – Licence, Master and  Doctorat;
(b)       the issuance of French "Diplômes Nationaux" to students;
(c)        the setting up of a team of academics to ensure the proper operation of juries and examinations and to advise on academic programmes at degree and postgraduate levels;
(d)       the Université de Limoges to put at the disposal of the Université des Mascareignes its continuous professional development facilities for the upgrading of staff; and
            (e)       the establishment of Masters and PhD programmes to upgrade the local academic staff. 
4.         Cabinet has taken note that a Memorandum of Understanding would be signed between the Mauritius Fire and Rescue Service and the Seychelles Fire and Rescue Services Agency.  The Memorandum of Understanding aims at creating the necessary framework and mechanism which would allow a better understanding of issues relating to fire and other emergency threats common to the two countries, and implementing collaborative measures to address those issues.  The activities under the Memorandum of Understanding include the following –
            (a)       programmes and services in specific areas of mutual interest, namely, exchanging of information in fire safety, fire prevention and emergency planning;
            (b)       capacity building in Urban Search and Rescue, search and rescue during floods, cyclones, landslides and tsunamis;
            (c)        the development of research projects; and
            (d)       leadership and technical exchange programmes and participation in commemorative activities.
5.         Cabinet has taken note that the World Wide Fund for Nature would hold a Workshop on electronic technologies for Monitoring, Control and Surveillance in Mauritius in March 2015. The World Wide Fund for Nature, an international non-governmental organization founded in 1961, is involved in the conservation, research and restoration of the environment.  The Workshop would be attended by some 40 participants from the South West Indian Ocean, the Coastal East Africa and the Northern Indian Ocean countries.
6.         Cabinet has taken note of the outcome of the Fourth Trade Policy Review of Mauritius held in Geneva in October 2014 at the WTO.  The Chairperson of the Trade Policy Review, HE Mrs Mariam Salleh, Permanent Representative of Malaysia to the WTO, recalled that Mauritius has been pursuing an economic reform agenda since 2006, which has contributed significantly in mitigating the impact of the financial crisis and the global economic slowdown on its economy.  She praised Mauritius for the array of legislation enacted since the last Trade Policy Review in 2008, namely competition policy, government procurement, anti–dumping and copyright.  The economic diversification efforts made by Mauritius and the focus on the new poles of growth, including the ocean economy, were also brought to the fore.
7.         Cabinet has taken note that the International Film Festival, scheduled from 4 to 7 December 2014, had been rescheduled from 7 to 10 March 2015 in view of the forthcoming General Elections and to coincide with the National Day Celebrations 2015.  
8.         Cabinet has taken note that, on the occasion of the Universal Children’s Day 2014 commemorated on 14 December, an official ceremony would be held at the Rajiv Gandhi Science Centre targeting around 300 children and including, inter alia, a sketch on the theme “Protez linosans nou zanfan”, music, songs and dances. The theme retained by the Ministry of Gender Equality, Child Development and Family Welfare for this year is “Protez linosans nous zanfan”.

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