Mauritius offers a business environment which is very conducive to investment and business growth. Mauritius benefits from political stability and sound macroeconomic management, with increased foreign direct investment (FDI) sustaining growth. Mauritius also benefits from its strategic positioning as a gateway for investments from Europe and Asia into Africa.

The government’s long-term strategic vision has been set out in the country’s long-term policy document, Achieving the Second Economic Miracle and Vision 2030, and the short-to-medium term 2015-19 Government Programme which calls for a more diversified and inclusive economy. The government has demonstrated firm commitment to promoting, industrialisation and entrepreneurship, in an effort to boost sustainable economic growth and enhance the competitiveness of the economy.

The authorities are exploring innovative approaches to promote direct foreign investments and accelerate diversification and modernisation. The government aims to promote exports by developing closer links with importers and the exploitation of niche and regional markets, particularly in sub-Saharan Africa. Agreements with Ghana, Senegal and Madagascar, establishing Special Economic Zones (SEZ) in these countries to open up niche markets for Mauritius’ export industries have been approved.

Mauritius’ economy grew by 3.6% in 2016 compared to 3.4% in 2015, following a slight pick-up in private investment. Economic growth was driven by the information and communications technology and financial and insurance sectors, which grew by 6.3% and 5.6%, respectively.

Mauritius offers excellent business opportunities in the following industry sectors:

Financial Services

Mauritius is a strategic Global Business jurisdiction situated at the crossroads of the Asia and Africa.  The global business sector has been established as one of the leading financial centre of the region.  The reputation of Mauritius as an International Financial Centre rests on its global recognition, quality of its services and its pool of highly qualified professionals.

Leveraging on its state-of-the-art infrastructure and global connectivity, Mauritius has inherited the attributes to become the new economic powerhouse of the region. Attractive investment opportunities exist in various areas of financial services sector such as: Banking; Insurance, Reinsurance and Private Pension; Listings and Capital Raising; Investment and Asset Management Centre; Regional Head Quarters (RHQs) and Regional Treasury Centres (RTCs); and Auxiliary Services.

Agro-Industry

The cultivation of sugar cane has been one of the main agricultural activities in Mauritius. As the epoch of guaranteed price and the quota for free access of the Mauritian produced sugar in the EU market comes to an end, the traditional sugar industry is set to transform itself into a sugar cane cluster producing altogether several types of sugar, electricity and ethanol.

The other agricultural products namely fruits and vegetables are grown locally by the Mauritians, though in a much smaller scale. Mauritius still remains by far a net importer of food, in times when growing importance is laid on food security.

A huge opportunity for investors therefore exist in agri-business, ranging right from the cultivation of a wider range of produce to value-added processing, from dairy products to livestock, for local consumption as well as for exports. Production of flowers, bio-fertilizers and seeds for export also provides a large opportunity for investors.

Life Sciences

The entrepreneurial spirit, the cutting-edge technologies, academic excellence, a highly skilled and bilingual workforce and a strong intellectual property protection regime indicates that Mauritius has all the pre-requisites to become a strong and fast-growing life sciences industry.

Mauritius aims to become a major player in the fields of biomedical research, clinical trials, medical devices and pharmaceutical/ phyto-pharmaceutical production.

Property Development

In past years, the real estate sector in Mauritius has been particularly buoyant, with the coming up of all the commercial malls, luxury villas and international flagship hotels. A wave of landmark property development is under way which set the new standards in terms of design and quality of build.  Thus opportunities in this sector are many and diverse.

Manufacturing

The export-oriented manufacturing sector of Mauritius remains a major constituent of the Mauritian economy in terms of foreign exchange earnings, employment generation and its contribution to GDP. This sector is expected to continue to play an important role in the consolidation and diversification of the industrial base of the country.

With the privilege of market access, in terms of the quota-free and the duty-free entry into the European Union (Cotonou Agreement), to the Eastern and Southern African markets (SADC and COMESA) and to the US market, in the context of the AGOA, investment opportunities exist in the manufacturing sector.

Some of the special incentives provided by the government to foreign investors in manufacturing sector include:

  • No custom duty or sales tax on raw materials and equipment;
  • No tax on dividends;
  • No capital gains tax;
  • Free repatriation of profits, dividends and capital; and
  • 50% relief on personal income tax for expatriate staff.

These incentives present a very lucrative opportunity for investment.

Healthcare

The healthcare sector in Mauritius has metamorphosed itself into an integrated cluster underpinned by a core group of high-value activities such as hi-tech medicine, medical tourism, medical education and wellness. Global healthcare companies have invested in multi-specialty and super-specialty centres of excellence to cater for the growing healthcare needs of both national and international patients.

The Medical tourism industry in Mauritius has witnessed a sustained growth over the last years.  The Mauritian private healthcare sector now boasts state-of-the-art facilities and highly-qualified personnel providing comprehensive high-end medical care which has enabled Mauritius to position itself as a leading destination for medical travel.

Opportunities to invest in the Mauritius healthcare industry include:

  • Multi-specialty hospital and specialty centre for local and foreign patients
  • Plastic reconstructive and cosmetic surgery clinics
  • Dental clinics and dental laboratories
  • Luxury homes for non-citizen retirees
  • Allied health services to carry out back office activities

ICT-BPO

The Economic Vision 2030 of the Government of Mauritius aims at transforming the ICT industry into a key sector by fostering innovation & creativity and developing a sustainable & high value added-economy that will provide more accessible and higher-value opportunities for the Mauritian citizens.

Mauritius has been successfully developing its ICT/BPO capabilities through investments in infrastructure, intelligence and innovation. With 700 ICT-BPO based enterprises, the country has one of the richest technology ecosystems in Africa that thrives on innovation and collaboration across sectors. The industry which currently employs over 21,500 professionals is being increasingly leveraged as a value-added destination.

Besides offering a distinctive proposition in bilingual skills (French, English) for UK/European companies, Mauritius has demonstrated capabilities in offering a compelling alternative for serving non-voice and IT needs of multinationals. Leading global companies have trusted Mauritius for its enabling business environment, excellent telecommunication facilities and political as well as social stability. Besides serving as a primary bilingual location for customer-centric services and a compelling alternative for higher value works, Mauritius is also being increasingly leveraged as the ideal platform for the delivery of business services for Africa.

Global players such as Accenture, Ceridian, Huawei, Orange Business Services, and Infosys amongst others have established their operations in Mauritius.

Contact Valsen for more business opportunities in Mauritius, as we offer a gateway into an emerging international business centre.