Mauritius: Policy Dialogue Meetings Held Between the Finance Minister and Several Ministers in the Context of the 2024-2025 Budget

The Minister of Finance, Economic Planning and Development, Dr Renganaden Padayachy, had Policy Dialogue Meetings with several Ministers, yesterday in Port Louis, in the context of the forthcoming 2024-2025 Budget.

The Minister of Arts and Cultural Heritage, Mr Avinash Teeluck; the Minister of Commerce and Consumer Protection, Dr Marie Christiane Dorine Chukowry; the Minister of Public Service, Administrative and Institutional Reforms, Dr Anjiv Ramdhany; and the Minister of Industry, SMEs and Cooperatives, Mrs Naveena Ramyad, each met Dr Padayachy to put forward their proposals in view of the forthcoming budget.

Arts and Cultural Heritage

In a statement after his meeting with Dr Padayachy, Minister Teeluck highlighted that discussions focused on the two priority areas of his Ministry namely cultural heritage and arts as well as ongoing and new projects to be implemented and their financial costs.

Speaking about measures on the cultural front, he underscored the need to put in place more facilities for artists so that they continue to thrive. He also deemed important to rethink the way that cultural activities such as concerts are organised.

Commerce and Consumer Protection

For her part, Dr Chukowry stated that the meeting she had with the Finance Minister was very fruitful, with the latter very attentive to the proposals put forth with regards to the requests and aspirations of the population and consumers.

Public Service

As for Dr Ramdhany, he stated that the proposals put forward by his Ministry aim to ensure continuity and the welfare of public officers and their families. He mentioned the two-hourly casual leave which public officers are now entitled to and the granting of leave with pay against annual/vacation/sick leave to take care of sick children, parents and grandparents. These measures, he added, have been implemented following recommendations from Trade Unions.

Industry, SMEs and Cooperatives

In a statement, Ms Ramyad recalled that the manufacturing sector is going through a difficult phase, with a drop in exportation. It is therefore important, she emphasised, to support the sector in digitalisation, promotion, and facilitate access to workers.

Speaking about cooperatives, she said that there is a need to formalise the sector through empowerment and training and devise tailor-made schemes.

As regards SMEs, Ms Ramyad observed that the private sector should also give an important place to SMEs as suppliers. Furthermore, any enterprise with a turnover of more that Rs 25 million has the obligation to accommodate 10 SMEs, she stated.

She underlined the need to help each of the 38,000 SMEs present in Mauritius on a case-to-case basis. She also spoke of financial assistance to SMEs and decreasing the administrative burden so that the SMEs can manage his business and their market easily, as well as enhancing their visibility at different places such as the duty free section at the airport.

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