Mauritius is a small island economy in the Indian Ocean. It is classified as Africa’s most liberal economy and among the most competitive in Sub-Saharan Africa.
Despite its inherent vulnerability (external shocks for climate adversities and financial crisis) as a Small Island Developing State (SIDS), Mauritius has developed from a low-income, agriculturally based economy to an upper middle-income diversified economy with growing industrial, financial, and tourist sectors.
While already complying with the EU minimum standards of good governance in tax matters on transparency and exchange of information, progress remains to be made to fully address the issue of fair tax competition.
The EU’s priorities in Mauritius are:
- Support the development of a partnership with Mauritius, beyond the development aid dynamics by promoting common shared values and interests.
- Promote respect for human rights and gender quality.
- Contribute to addressing climate change and other vulnerabilities affecting Mauritius as a SIDS, notably by promoting the benefits of sustainable agriculture.
- Contribute to future growth by supporting research, innovation and tertiary education and culture as a tool for development. Promote trade and investment between Mauritius and EU. Link whenever possible to investment opportunities, if feasible, within a broader Africa region.
Following the first programming phase, which envisaged several sectors of intervention (energy, water connectivity, infrastructure and tertiary education), it was agreed with the Government to limit the 11th European Development Fund (EDF) National Indicative Programme (NIP) allocation (€9.9 million) to the education sector. The main focus during the 2016-18 period will be on the tertiary education sector, which also includes both research and innovation.
The project will focus on increasing employability and support growth and the transition of Mauritius to a high-income country through innovation and increased competitiveness.