Mauritius and Ghana to embark on new landmark of cooperation
Mauritius and Ghana opened a new chapter of cooperation with the signing of a Double Taxation Avoidance Agreement (DTAA) and the agreed minutes of proceedings following the inaugural meeting of the Mauritius-Ghana Permanent Joint Commission on bilateral cooperation held yesterday.
The agreements were signed this morning at the New Treasury Building in Port Louis during a joint press statement by the Prime Minister, Mr Pravind Kumar Jugnauth and the Vice President of Ghana, Dr Mahamudu Bawumia, in the context of the latter’s official visit in Mauritius as Chief Guest on the occasion of the celebrations marking the 49th anniversary of Independence and 25th anniversary of the Republic of Mauritius.
The DTAA will help eliminate double taxation which is a barrier to economic activities as well as remove major impediments to bilateral trade and investment between the two countries. Furthermore, it will create a conducive business environment for investors willing to engage in larger cross-border activities. As for the agreed minutes of proceedings of the Mauritius-Ghana Joint Commission, it represents another milestone into strengthening the relations between Mauritius and Ghana under which several instruments to sustain the economic cooperation between the two countries will be devised.
At the press statement after the tête-à-tête and working session with the Ghanaian Vice President, Prime Minister Jugnauth, underpinned the importance of the visit of the Ghanaian delegation in Mauritius which according to him reflects the vision of the new economic and diplomatic stands of the Government towards the concretisation of various projects for employment creation and into deepening the economic relations. Hence, he underlined that it is in this perspective that the first meeting of the Mauritius-Ghana Permanent Joint Commission was held co-chaired by the Ministers of Foreign Affairs of both countries who gave their endorsement to accelerating project implementation between the two countries.
Prime Minister Jugnauth also expressed his gratitude towards the President and the People of Ghana for their unflinching support to Mauritius on the Chagos Archipelago issue and lauded the signing of the DTAA which he said is another landmark into cementing the relations between Mauritius and Ghana. He further elaborated the various topics raised during the working session namely:
(i) review of the status of the framework agreement signed in 2015 for the setting up of a Technology Park in Dawa;
(ii) accelerating the setting up of the Special Economic Zone(SEZ) project in Ghana following the incorporation of a special purpose vehicle (SPV), the Ghana Smart City Ltd, in December 2016, with 60% shareholding from Mauritius and 40% from Ghana;
(iii) Proposal by Mauritius to set up a Cyber Tower in Accra which will also accommodate a Centre of Excellence to boost trade and services and the setting up of a solar energy power generation and a tourism and hospitality project for the construction of coastal resort to boost South-South cooperation;
(iv) Elaboration of instruments under the Mauritius-Ghana Permanent Joint Commission such as an Investment Promotion and Protection Agreement or an SPV to channel investment between the two countries;
(v) promotion of gold and the jewelry sector in Mauritius with the establishment of the Mauritius International Derivatives and Commodity index;
(vi) conclusion of an agreement between the Mauritius Chamber of Commerce Industry and that of Ghana for the setting up of a business council;
(vii) recruitment of Mauritian health practitioners in Ghanaian health sector;
(viii) Ghanaian assistance for setting up of a Slavery Museum in Mauritius as well as its expertise in the handicraft sector.
For his part, the Vice President of Ghana, Dr Mahamudu Bawumia, spoke of his appreciation regarding the fruitful discussions with the Prime Minister particularly with regards the agreed instruments under the Mauritius-Ghana Permanent Joint Commission in the various economic sectors and the DTAA. He further emphasised the need to foster more South-South cooperation referring to the Mauritian and Ghanaian collaboration as example and expressed his gratitude towards Mauritius for supporting the position of Ghana as an International Financial Services Centre in West Africa in addition to the scholarships opportunities offered to Ghanaian students to study in Mauritius. He reiterated his full support to accelerate project implementation between the two countries as well as in supporting Mauritius in the Chagos Archipelago issue.
Dr Mahamadu Bawumia concluded by expressing his interest that the several projects discussed are materialised into concrete actions for the mutual benefit of both countries so as to develop a new era of cooperation and deepened the ties between Ghana and Mauritius.