CABINET DECISIONS – 06 MARCH 2020
1. Cabinet has agreed to drafting instructions being given to the Attorney General’s Office for –
(a) the review of the Environment Protection (Standards for Air) Regulations 1998;
(b) the review of the Environment Protection (Declaration of Environmental Laws) Regulations 2005; and
(c) amendments to be made to the Ninth Schedule (Fixed Penalty Fines) of the Environment Protection Act 2002 by way of regulations.
The objectives of the above proposals are to –
(i) improve the ambient air quality;
(ii) improve the enforcement mechanism; and
(iii) reduce noise nuisances and illegal dumping.
2. Cabinet has taken note of the signing of a Memorandum of Understanding between the Standard Chartered Bank and the Government of Mauritius to formalise the collaboration with the Bank for the development of a Sustainable Financing Framework for Mauritius. The aim of the Memorandum of Understanding is to secure the expertise of the Standard Chartered Bank to assist the Ministry of Financial Services and Good Governance in the elaboration of a financing framework through the issuance of new product offerings in terms of green, blue or sustainability bonds on the Stock Exchange of Mauritius.
3. Cabinet has taken note that a ‘Déclaration d’Intention’ has been signed between the Ministry of Blue Economy, Marine Resources, Fisheries and Shipping and l’Institut de Recherche pour le Développement, a French public research institution under the joint supervision of the French Ministries of Higher Education and Research and Foreign Affairs, during the official visit of the French Minister of Europe and Foreign Affairs to Mauritius. The main objective of the ‘Déclaration d’Intention’ is to consolidate the cooperation and collaboration between the two institutions with a view to obtaining expertise and guidance relating, inter alia, to the blue economy. The ‘Déclaration d’Intention’ provides for mutual agreement and cooperation in the fields of –
(a) campaigns at sea;
(b) marine biology and biotechnology;
(c) marine ecology, biodiversity conservation and marine habitat recovery;
(d) fishing and sustainable aquaculture;
(e) assessment of plastic pollution and the impact of plastic on the environment and society;
(f) research in physical oceanography; and
(g) earth observation by satellite imagery.
4. Cabinet has taken note of the setting up of an Incubator at the Financial Services Institute to train current and prepare potential persons for board readiness in the public, private and third sectors. The rationale for the setting up of an Incubator is to promote good governance through effective contribution of boards and their members. The Incubator would develop and execute strategies for outreach as well as for attracting deserving and qualified potential directors. It would also provide high-quality coaching and advisory support to directors and facilitate understanding and practice of the National Code of Corporate Governance.
5. Cabinet has taken note of the outcome of an operation carried out recently by the Ministry of Commerce and Consumer Protection to crackdown the illegal use of domestic Liquefied Petroleum Gas (LPG) in small cylinders for commercial purposes. Out of 500 traders visited, some 140 were found to be using the domestic LPG cylinders in their business and contraventions were established against them accordingly.
6. Cabinet has taken note of the findings contained in the “Corruption Perceptions Index 2019” Report released on 23 January 2020 by Transparency International and of the follow up action undertaken after the publication of the “Global Corruption Barometer - Africa 2019” Report. A Committee has been set up at the level of the Ministry of Financial Services and Good Governance to chart out an Action Plan on how to enhance the Corruption Perceptions Index score and ranking of Mauritius.
7. Cabinet has agreed to Mauritius signing the Revised “Accord général de Coopération entre les Etats Membres de la COI” at the 34th Indian Ocean Commssion (IOC) Council of Ministers, in Seychelles. The revised agreement would now provide for, inter alia, –
(a) the holding of the IOC Council of Ministers twice a year;
(b) the institutionalisation of the IOC Summit of Heads of State and Government; and
(c) the establishment of a new post of Deputy Secretary General.
8. Cabinet has taken note of the Stamp Issue Programme for the year 2020. Postage Stamps would be issued on the following –
(a) the extinct species of Mauritius and Rodrigues, including the dodo, the parrot and the solitaire;
(b) the commemoration of the decade of biodiversity;
(c) the 50th year of existence of the “Centre de L`Audition et du Langage” for people with hearing disabilities situated in Beau Bassin;
(d) the 150th anniversary of the historical postal building situated at the Caudan Waterfront in Port Louis;
(e) the 200th anniversary of the Port Louis Theatre;
(f) the 50 years of diplomatic relations between Mauritius and Australia; and
(g) the building of the First Cube Satellite for Mauritius.
9. Cabinet has taken note of the outcome of the recent mission of the Minister of Housing and Land Use Planning to the United Arab Emirates where he participated in the tenth session of the World Urban Forum. The World Urban Forum is a non-legislative technical forum set up in 2002 by the United Nations Human Settlements Programme (UN-HABITAT). The theme of the Forum was “Cities of Opportunities: Connecting Culture and Innovation”. Participants were given the opportunity to take stock and debate emerging innovative approaches and practices in harnessing culture and innovation as drivers for sustainable urbanisation and provide greater insights into the linkages between urbanisation, culture and innovation. The Minister also had bilateral meetings with Heads of delegation from the United Arab Emirates, the USA, Uganda and the Seychelles and various international organisations. The “Abu Dhabi Declared Actions” was adopted at the Forum.
10. Cabinet has taken note of the outcome of the recent mission of the Minister of Labour, Human Resource Development and Training to Uganda where he participated in the 46th Session of the African Regional Labour Administration Centre (ARLAC) Governing Council Meeting and High Level Symposium on the Strategic Objective on Social Protection. The main objectives of the Symposium were to –
(a) pursue policies based on the following four strategic objectives as items for recurrent discussions, namely employment, social protection, social dialogue, and fundamental principles and rights at work; and
(b) prepare the ARLAC family for informed participation during the recurrent discussion on the Strategic objective on Social Protection (Social Security) and to exchange information on existing practice for comparative advantage on the different efforts made by Member States on Social Protection.
The Governing Council recommended Member States to, inter alia, –
(i) develop strategies for Resource Mobilisation for Social Protection;
(ii) promote and develop strategies for job rich growth and decent work for the youth;
(iii) invest in the strengthening of Social Protection Management Information Systems;
(iv) strengthen coordination and coherence of Policies for Social Protection and Interventions; and
(v) ensure ratification of Convention 102 and other relevant instruments on Social Protection;
In the margins of the meetings, the Minister of Labour, Human Resource Development and Training had discussions with Ministers from Uganda, Namibia, Zambia, Botswana and Malawi on possible areas of cooperation.
11. Cabinet has taken note of the appointment of Mr Sarwansingh Purmessur, Permanent Secretary of the National Development Unit as Chairperson of the Land Drainage Board.