The Budget 2017-2018 lays emphasis on the role of embassies and consulates to boost up growth. They will be called upon to channel more of their resources to export and investment-driven diplomacy in strategic markets, while focusing on consolidating diplomatic footprint in Africa.
In view of enhancing cooperation and boosting up trade with other countries, the following measures have been enunciated:
A number of joint commissions will be held with countries such as Cote D'Ivoire, Ethiopia, Ghana, Kenya, Madagascar and Zambia. Our aim is to further enhance bilateral cooperation with these countries in various sectors, including trade, investment and capacity building;
Establishment of a Business and Investment Platform for Africa by the Mauritius-Africa Fund to facilitate the implementation of joint projects by Mauritian enterprises in Africa;
Negotiations on Free Trade Agreements will be pursued with China and the European Free Trade Association; and
Step up efforts to finalise the Comprehensive Economic Cooperation and Partnership Agreement (CECPA) with India.
The first Special Economic Zone in Senegal will be inaugurated with the Mauritius-Africa Fund as a partner in that venture. The completion of Phase 1 of the development of that Zone will give Mauritian companies access to warehouses and office spaces totalling 31,000 square meters on 13 hectares. Whereas Phase 2 of the development will be on 40 hectares.
As regards Ivory Coast, the Mauritius-Africa Fund has secured access to land, on preferential terms, in the "Zone Franche de la Biotechnologie et des Technologies de l'Information et de la Communication" for Mauritian enterprises to undertake development projects.