Our new Doing Business in Mauritius Guide looks at a market which has many opportunities for the UK’s businesses. Despite being relatively small, with a population of just over 1.3 million, the Indian Ocean archipelago is seen by many as a model of stability and economic prosperity in the Southeast Africa region. Rated at 25th in the World Bank’s ‘Doing Business’ Rankings, it is not hard to see why.
The island boasts a strong financial services sector and one of Africa’s highest per capita incomes. It is viewed by investors all over the world as an ideal platform for investment into India and is now also seen as a gateway into Africa. It is a member of several trade agreements, including both the Common Market for Eastern and Southern Africa (COMESA) and the Southern African Development Community (SADC). Mauritius exports to the SADC and COMESA region have increased significantly over the past five years. Exports to the region were highly concentrated in textiles and clothing products. Mauritius also enjoys preferential market access to several export destinations through a wide network of trade agreements notably with the European Union and the USA.
UK exported goods to Mauritius were worth £68 million as recently as 2015 while, unsurprisingly given its strong financial services sector, the export of services to the island amounted to £262 million as recently as 2014. The UK typically exports vehicles and mechanical components, beverages and spirits, electrical and electronic components, and food products into Mauritius, while UK tourists alone spent £90 million in Mauritius in 2015.
There are plenty of British businesses already making their mark on the island, particularly in the financial services and education industries, with HSBC, Standard Chartered Bank, Middlesex University, Glasgow Caledonian University, and many more with a presence there. Given the similar business and legal practice, common language, and convenient time zone (GMT+4); this makes sense, especially given the country’s strategic location.
The Institute is on hand to help you make the most of the opportunities in the Mauritius and the challenges that exporting to any country can bring. We can help you through our training, education, technical helpline and shipping office. So please get do get in touch if you want to be the next business making the most of Mauritius’ great strategic location near Africa and India could make it an ideal next market for your business.