CABINET DECISIONS – 22 NOVEMBER 2019
1. Cabinet has agreed to amendments being made to the Mauritius Agricultural Marketing Act to, inter alia, provide for –
(a) the Agricultural Marketing Board (AMB) to operate and manage the National Wholesale Market; and
(b) the establishment of a General Fund as recommended by the National Audit Office.
Drafting instructions would be given to the Attorney General’s Office accordingly.
2. Cabinet has taken note that the Local Government (Fees) Regulations 2019 and the Local Government (Amendment of Schedule) Regulations 2019 would be promulgated with a view to further improve the business environment for investors and foster further economic development. The Local Government (Fees) Regulations 2019 would provide for, inter alia –
(a) the process and time frame for payment of trade fees to the Corporate and Business Registration Department (CBRD);
(b) the harmonisation of fees across all the Municipal and District Councils; and
(c) the remittance of fees collected by the CBRD to the relevant Municipal and District Councils.
The Local Government (Amendment of Schedule) Regulations 2019 are being made with a view to unbundling some economic activities so as to empower the local authorities to enforce the provision of the Act.
3. Cabinet has taken note that the Mauritius Oceanography Institute would implement a project on coral culture for small scale reef rehabilitation. The overall objective of the project is to mitigate the impact of climate change on coastal communities by implementing coral reef restoration initiatives using selected resilient corals. The small scale reef rehabilitation would be undertaken at Le Morne, Poudre d’Or and Bambous Virieux through the setting up of a demo sea based coral farm and coral garden, training of the coastal communities on coral culture and reef restoration techniques, and development of sensitisation programmes on the marine environment and coral farming programme. The project is being funded by the United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP)
4. Cabinet has taken note of the implementation of the following innovative digital Government projects in the Ministry of Technology, Communication and Innovation namely, –
(a) the National Authentication Framework which would provide for a single window for authentication of citizens to access all e-Government services. The system would provide users a single ID and password to access any e-Government service;
(b) the Certification Authority that would integrate the existing Mauritius National Identity Card System Certification Authority, would also provide digital certificate services and e-signing services for systems requiring such services and induce competition in the digital certification market;
(c) the Mobile ID which would allow citizens to authenticate themselves using their smart phones and, inter alia, promote the uptake of e-services/m-services by providing an electronic digital identity to citizens; and
(d) the Electronic Queue Management System that would help Ministries and Departments manage queues efficiently and thereby reduce waiting time. Citizens would be able to register on the system via the Internet or relevant mobile application to be developed.
5. Cabinet has agreed to the setting up of a Ministerial Committee to be chaired by the Minister of Foreign Affairs, Regional Integration and International Trade and a National Organising Committee to be chaired by the Secretary to Cabinet and Head of the Civil Service to look into the arrangements to be made for the 52nd Anniversary of Independence and 28th Anniversary of the Republic of Mauritius on 12 March 2020.
6. Cabinet has agreed to Mauritius acceding to Annex VI of the International Convention for the Prevention of Pollution from ships, MARPOL. Annex VI covers items such as fuel oil consumption reporting, Ozone depleting substances, Nitrogen oxides, Sulphur oxides and particulate matter from marine engines, Volatile Organic Compounds, shipboard incineration, fuel oil availability and quality, reception facilities, Ship Energy Efficiency Management plan, collection and reporting of ship fuel oil consumption data, Port State Control Inspection and Certification of vessels for Air Pollution Prevention and Energy Efficiency.
7. Cabinet has taken note that the payment of a one-off Performance Bonus due since January 2018, to officers of the Disciplined Forces and the Rehabilitation Youth Centre (RYC) as recommended in the PRB Report 2016 would be effected in December 2019. The grades of officers eligible for the one-off performance bonus, as recommended in the PRB Report 2016, are as follows –
(a) Police Department - Police Constable up to Inspector of Police
(b) Prison Department - Prisons Officer/Senior Prisons Officer up to Principal Prisons Officer
(c) Fire Services - Firefighter up to Senior Station Officer
(d) Rehabilitation - Officer, RYC up to Chief Officer, RYC
The one-off performance bonus would be paid to these officers as per established criteria.
8. Cabinet has taken note that the payment of the increase in the rates of basic pensions including the end of year bonus for December 2019 would be paid on the first working day of December 2019, that is, on Monday 02 December 2019 for beneficiaries whose pensions are credited into their bank accounts. As regards beneficiaries who are paid through Post Offices, arrangements have been made with the Mauritius Post Ltd to effect payment, in alphabetical order, from Monday 02 December 2019 to Wednesday 11 December 2019, instead of 05 to 18 December 2019.
9. Cabinet has taken note that following the fire outbreak at Cité Longére, Baie du Tombeau on 20 November 2019, several houses were completely or partially damaged. The Ministry of Social Integration, Social Security, and National Solidarity immediately opened three evacuee centres, namely St Malo Community Centre, Baie du Tombeau Sugar Industry Labour Welfare Fund Centre and Riche Terre Community Centre to accommodate the victims and made appropriate arrangements for them to be provided with breakfast, lunch and dinner. Mattresses had been delivered to the three centres. A doctor has also visited the victims for a checkup. Appropriate allowances are being paid to the fire victims.
Cabinet has also taken note that the Ministry of Housing and Land Use Planning is making necessary arrangements to rehabilitate the damaged housing units.
10. Cabinet has agreed to Mauritius, as Lead Coordinator of the Trade and Investment Facilitation cluster of the Indian Ocean Rim Association (IORA), hosting the IORA Trade and Investment Experts’ Meeting on 30 and 31 January 2020. The main objectives of the Experts’ meeting are to, inter alia, examine barriers to trade and investment among IORA Member States, review existing instruments of trade and investment facilitation, and explore mechanisms for the enhancement of intra-regional trade and investment in specific areas such as Trade Facilitation, Women’s Economic Empowerment and Investment in Goods and Services. Some 50 Trade and Investment experts from IORA Member States are expected to attend the meeting.
11. Cabinet has taken note that the annual Board meeting of the Indian Ocean Regional Anti-Doping Organisation would be held in Mauritius on 08 and 09 December 2019. The Organisation operates under the aegis of the World Anti–Doping Agency (WADA) and its main objective is to promote sports without doping and to bring together countries in the Indian Ocean for the organisation of anti-doping activities.
12. Cabinet has taken note that the Motorways and Main Roads (Amendment) Regulations 2019 would be promulgated with a view to renaming the ‘Baie du Cap, Chamarel and Case Noyale Road’ as ‘Chamarel Road’. The Regulations would come into operation on 1 December 2019.
13. Cabinet has taken note of the reconstitution of the National Regulatory Sandbox License Committee with Lord Anthony St John of Bletso as Chairperson. He is a British peer, politician, businessman and solicitor. He holds a Bachelor of Arts and Bachelor of Science from the University of Cape Town, a Bachelor of Law from the University of South Africa, and a Masters of Law from the London School of Economics. Lord Anthony St John of Bletso is currently a Member of the House of Lords Select Committee on Communications as well as the Lords Information Committee.
14. Cabinet has taken note that in the context of the International Day of Persons with Disabilities, commemorated on 3 December, the Ministry of Social Integration, Social Security and National Solidarity would organise a national event on 3 December 2019 at Cape Town Hall, Castel. The programme would, inter alia, comprise a cultural programme to showcase the artistic talents of persons with disabilities. The athletes with disabilities who won medals at the Indian Ocean Island Games 2019 and World Para-Athletics Junior Championship 2019 would also be rewarded on that occasion. The local authorities would celebrate the event at regional level. The theme chosen for this year is “Promoting the participation of persons with disabilities and their leadership: taking action on the 2030 Development Agenda”.
15. Cabinet has taken note of the activities that would be organised by the Ministry of Gender Equality and Family Welfare on the occasion of the International Day for the Elimination of Violence Against Women, commemorated on 25 November, including –
(a) an official function on 24 November 2019 at the Paul Octave Wiehé Auditorium, Réduit to create awareness on the problem of violence against women. A media campaign would be launched on that day;
(b) a Consultative Workshop on “Stakeholders Engagement on Domestic Violence – Perpetrators’ Rehabilitation Programme” on 28 November 2019; and
(c) a Consultative Workshop on the Observatory on Gender-Based Violence on 10 and 11 December 2019. The Observatory aims at increasing understanding of the actions carried out on matters related to victim support, analysing their evolution and guiding public policies developed to eradicate the problem of gender-based violence.
The United Nations has retained the theme “Orange the World: Generation Equality Stands Against Rape” for this year.
16. Cabinet has taken note that in the context of World Diabetes Day, observed on 14 November 2019, the Ministry of Health and Wellness would organise various activities including screening and counselling for NCDs, an exhibition on health related issues and cooking demonstration on 23 November 2019 at the Gymnasium of Souillac SSS.
17. Cabinet has taken note that the Annual Civil Service Kermesse would be held on Sunday 15 December 2019 at the Gymkhana Grounds, Vacoas.