CABINET DECISIONS – 31 JANUARY 2020
1. Cabinet has taken note of the prevailing situation regarding the novel coronavirus detected in Wuhan City in the People’s Republic of China and the precautionary measures being taken by the Ministry of Health and Wellness to safeguard Mauritians against any risks. In Mauritius, there are presently no confirmed cases of the novel coronavirus. The following precautionary measures are effective as from 20 January 2020 -
(a) all passengers travelling from China are screened at the airport through the thermal scanner. Similarly, passengers arriving by cruise ships at Port-Louis Harbour are also being screened. Passengers coming from China are closely monitored by the Public Health Inspectors, for a period of 14 days post arrival;
(b) passengers showing signs of fever and cough are being assessed by the Rapid Response Team consisting of Regional Public Health Superintendents, Medical Health Officers, Ambulance Staff and the Public Health Inspectors. The team is operational at each regional hospital;
(c) specimens from suspected cases are being sent to the Virology Laboratory, Victoria Hospital, for investigation; and
(d) suspected cases are being admitted at the New Souillac Hospital for investigation and treatment.
The Ministry of Health and Wellness has also issued press communiqués to inform the general public about the novel coronavirus and the precautions that need to be taken to avoid any risk of infection. Meetings have been held with Tour Operators and Directors of Travel Agencies in order to sensitise them on the preventive measures and to seek their close collaboration concerning the surveillance of passengers arriving from China.
The Ministry of Foreign Affairs, Regional Integration and International Trade has also issued a communiqué to request Mauritian nationals in China to stay in contact with the Embassy of Mauritius in Beijing in order to provide information pertaining to their health conditions and to extend the necessary support and assistance they may require. The Ministry is also looking into the request for evacuation of Mauritian nationals in Wuhan City.
Cabinet has also taken note that a High Level Committee chaired by the Prime Minister would meet that very afternoon to take stock of the situation and of the impact of the novel coronavirus on the various sectors of the economy.
2. Cabinet has taken note that HE Mr Cyril Ramaphosa, President of the Republic of South Africa would effect a State Visit to Mauritius and would be the Chief Guest for the National Day Celebrations in March 2020.
3. Cabinet has taken note of the findings of the Second Report of the National Wage Consultative Council on the impact of the introduction of the National Minimum Wage. The salient findings of the Report, based upon analysis of aggregate data from Statistics Mauritius and data from the Mauritius Revenue Authority, are that the introduction of the National Minimum Wage –
(a) has not impacted upon inflation;
(b) has supplemented the income of minimum wage workers thereby increasing their purchasing power and positively impacting on household expenditure and the standard of living of households;
(c) has contributed to move households out of relative poverty; and
(d) has raised the earnings of low-paid workers and thereby reducing income inequality.
4. Cabinet has taken note that the Fisheries and Marine Resources (Fishing of Sea Cucumbers) (Amendment) Regulations 2020 would be promulgated under the Fisheries and Marine Resources Act. The Regulations were first promulgated in 2009 to suspend the fishing of sea cucumbers to allow the stock of sea cucumbers to replenish. The main object of the Regulations has been to exercise control on the fishing of sea cucumbers in the maritime zones of Mauritius to ensure the sustainable exploitation of this resource. The provisions of these Regulations are being extended up to 31 December 2023 so that no person shall fish any undersized sea cucumber or sea cucumber at sea without the authorisation of the Permanent Secretary of the Ministry of Blue Economy, Marine Resources, Fisheries and Shipping.
5. Cabinet has taken note of the implementation of the “Industrial Waste Management - Cost Structure Review” project by the Ministry of Industrial Development, SMEs and Cooperatives with the technical and financial assistance of the United Nations Industrial Development Organisation under the Partnership for Action on Green Economy Initiative. The objectives of the project are to promote sustainable industrial development and enhance the competitiveness of enterprises through sound industrial waste management. The main components of the project include, among others, –
(a) a review of industrial waste management legislations in Mauritius;
(b) a study of the cost structure of industrial waste management in manufacturing enterprises; and
(c) sensitisation of stakeholders on the importance of the Extended Producer Responsibility which guides producers on their responsibility in the whole lifecycle of their products, starting from their creation up to the stage where they become waste.
The project would span over a period of 3 months, from February to April 2020 and would comprise consultative meetings with stakeholders, site visits to manufacturing enterprises and a survey for collection of data.
6. Cabinet has taken note that in the context of the 2024 Summer Olympics to be held in Paris from 26 July to 11 August 2024, the Ministry of Youth Empowerment, Sports and Recreation in collaboration with the Trust Fund for Excellence in Sports (TFES), is implementing a project named “Horizon Paris 2024” aimed at providing appropriate support to Mauritian athletes for their preparation up to the 2024 Olympic Games. The project is being piloted by a Committee set up under the aegis of the TFES and chaired by Mr Dominique Filleul, a French retired professional handballer and comprises representatives of the Ministry of Youth Empowerment, Sports and Recreation and different National Sport Federations. The Committee would present the project which would have as slogan “On Prend le Paris” to all stakeholders on 06 February 2020 at Côte d’Or National Sports Complex.
7. Cabinet has taken note that the Municipal Council of Beau Bassin-Rose Hill has decided to rename the Plaisance Municipal Sports Complex as Eddy Bill Thérèse Municipal Sports Complex. Mr Eddy Bill Thérèse who was born in Plaisance, Rose Hill was a famous basketball player and has won the National Championship as best basketball player on various occasions. He was considered as a role model for many youngsters in the town of Rose Hill.
8. Cabinet has taken note of the constitution of the Board of the Higher Education Commission with Dr Abdess Salem Saumtally as Chairperson.
9. Cabinet has taken note of the reconstitution of the –
(a) Board of the Independent Broadcasting Authority with Mr Bhooneswar Rajkumarsingh as Chairperson;
(b) Information and Communication Technologies Board with Mr Dick Christophe Ng Sui Wa as Chairperson;
(c) St. Antoine Planters Cooperative Trust Board with Mr Vijay Nackchhed as Chairperson; and
(d) Board of the National Cooperative College with Mr Hurrydeo Boodhoo as Chairperson.