The newly elected President of the Republic of Botswana, Mr. Mokgweetsi Eric Keabetswe Masisi, was on a one-day visit to Mauritius on 03 May 2018. Soon after his arrival, he paid a courtesy call on the Prime Minister, Minister of Home Affairs, External Communications and National Development Unit and Minister of Finance and Economic Development, Mr. Pravind Kumar Jugnauth, at the New Treasury Building in Port Louis.
In the afternoon, a joint press conference was held by Prime Minister Jugnauth and President Keabetswe Masisi at the Treaty Room of the Treasury Building following a working session with key stakeholders from both the Mauritian and Botswanese sides.
Prime Minister Jugnauth congratulated President Mokgweetsi Eric Keabetswe Masisi who has taken office on 1st April 2018. He pointed out that the newly elected President of the Republic of Botswana is currently on a tour to meet with leaders in SADC countries with a view to strengthening bilateral relations as well as reviewing ongoing activities under the bilateral cooperation framework.
The Prime Minister informed that he and the President of the Republic of Botswana had recently met during the Commonwealth Heads of Government meeting in London held from 16 to 20 April 2018. He expressed gratitude to the Republic of Botswana who supported Mauritius at the United Nations General Assembly on the Chagos Archipelago case.
He underlined that the case has reached a crucial stage while adding that the hearing has been fixed for 3rd September 2018. He recalled that he has solicited a number of countries to intervene in favour of Mauritius.
Speaking about the working session, the Prime Minister said that discussions focused on exploring avenues of cooperation between the two countries. Talks are ongoing for the signing of a Memorandum of Understanding between the Economic Development Board of Mauritius and the Botswana Investment and Trade Centre, he pointed out.
Other avenues of cooperation which were at the fore of discussions include: collaboration between the Stock Exchange of both countries; encouraging Mauritian enterprises to explore the diamond sector in Botswana; and possibility of setting up a Special Economic Zone in Botswana.
For his part, President Masisi highlighted that the courtesy call and the working session the Botswanese delegation had with their Mauritian counter parts enabled them to renew bonds of friendship and solidarity as well as identify key sector areas where cooperation could be deepened and broadened.
Mr. Mokgweetsi Eric Keabetswe Masisi is the 5th President of Botswana since 1 April 2018. He also served as Minister of Education since 2014, and previously he was Minister of Presidential Affairs and Public Administration from 2011 to 2014. He was first elected to Parliament in 2009.