CABINET DECISIONS – 27 SEPTEMBER 2013
1. Cabinet has taken note of the positive performance of the National Economy to date. The finalised Growth Rate for 2012 is 3.4% and the forecasted Growth Rate for 2013 is 3.2%. Specific sectors, except for the construction sector, have performed positively as follows –
Agriculture, Forestry and Fishing +4.7%
Transportation and Storage +2.6%
Information and Communication +7.7%
Financial and Insurance activities +5.3%
Professional, Scientific and Technical activities +7.3%
As regards employment, latest estimates of Statistics Mauritius show that the economy would create around 8,000 jobs on a net basis this year as compared to around 7,000 previously estimated.
2. Cabinet has taken note that, during the recent terrorist attack in a shopping mall in Kenya, the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, Regional Integration and International Trade promptly contacted our Honorary Consul in Nairobi to ascertain whether there were any Mauritian nationals among the victims. The Ministry of Foreign Affairs, Regional Integration and International Trade has been informed that there is no Mauritian victim.
3. Taking into consideration representations made by fishers, and weather conditions prevailing during the net fishing season, Cabinet has agreed to the net fishing season being extended up to 10 October 2013.
4. Cabinet has agreed to Mauritius signing the Minamata Convention on Mercury. The Convention aims at protecting human health and the environment from releases of mercury and mercury compounds resulting from human activities, and promoting the use of alternatives, best available techniques and environmental practices across a range of products, processes and industries where mercury is used, released or emitted.
5. Cabinet has taken note that the National Empowerment Foundation would provide building materials to some 460 beneficiaries under its Social Housing and Community Empowerment Programme for Rodrigues. The National Empowerment Foundation provides building materials to vulnerable families earning a monthly combined household income of up to Rs5,000, and living in deplorable housing conditions. As at 2012, some 980 concrete housing units of 22 square metres were constructed in Rodrigues.
6. Cabinet has taken note that, as announced in Budget Speech 2013, the Ministry of Tertiary Education, Science, Research and Technology, in collaboration with the Tertiary Education Commission, would organise Les Assises de l’Enseignement Supérieur in October 2013. Les Assises de l’Enseignement Supérieur, based on the French model, would identify gaps between the industry and the academic institutions and examine the role of academic institutions in a changing labour market and emerging technologies. The Assises would address critical issues, such as quality, governance, employability and internationalization of higher education.
7. Cabinet has taken note that the 12ème Colloque VIH/SIDA Océan Indien would be held in Mauritius from 13 to 15 November 2013. The main objectives of the Colloque are to:
(a) update the knowledge and management of HIV infection amongst scientists, the medical and paramedical personnel, and service providers;
(b) share best practices and experiences between health personnel and the civil society of the region; and
(c) reinforce cooperation amongst Member States of the Indian Ocean Region with regard to HIV and AIDS and Harm Reduction Strategies.
The theme of the Colloque would be Redynamisons la Riposte.
8. Cabinet has taken note that the Minister of Health and Quality of Life would promulgate Regulations under the Medical Council Act and the Dental Council Act to include the following in the list of institutions recognized by the Councils –
(a) Monash University – Malaysia
(b) University of West Indies – Trinidad and Tobago
(c) Muhimbili University of Health and Allied Sciences – United Republic of Tanzania
(d) University of East Anglia – United Kingdom
(e) Centrum Egzaminów Medycznych – Poland
(f) Wenzhou Medical College – China
9. Cabinet has taken note of the outcome of the recent mission of the Minister of Industry, Commerce and Consumer Protection to Addis Ababa, Ethiopia where Enterprise Mauritius had organized a Buyers-Sellers Meeting. The aims of the Meeting were to –
(a) promote products “made in Mauritius” in the Eastern and Southern African markets, particularly the Ethiopian market;
(b) promote the visibility of Mauritian products and its industrial diversity; and
(c) reposition Mauritius as a reliable exporter of quality products and encourage agreements, in joint ventures, strategic alliances, etc.
The Mauritian industrialists have reported that they have established 330 contacts and 10 companies have received firm orders to the tune of USD 131,000.
In the margins of the Meeting, the Minister met the Adviser for Investment to the Prime Minister of Ethiopia, Mr Yuri Tadesse, with whom he discussed, among others, the potential for economic cooperation, trade and investment between the two countries.
Cabinet has also taken note that one Ethiopian student is among the beneficiaries of the 50 scholarships provided by Government to African students and Mauritius is currently providing training to 15 mid-level Ethiopian cadres selected by the Ethiopian Sugar Corporation.