5 ways Mauritius means business
Think Mauritius caters purely for beach-loving tourists? Think again. Mauritius is the pinnacle of sub-Saharan economies, and in a report released by the World Bank in October 2014 it was ranked 28th in the world for the ‘overall ease of doing business’.
We’ve written before about why Mauritius is a great place to do business, and how Mauritius’ business hotels can support your needs while you’re here. But what exactly is the island doing in terms of developing its technology and infrastructure and growing its support for enterprises and entrepreneurs? We take a look at what’s happening on the ground right now.
The Small and Medium Enterprises sector looks set to play an essential part in the continued development of Mauritius’ economy, so a project to establish SME Parks across the country is a welcome boost. These technological parks are being developed at various locations including Roche Bois, Plaine Magnien and Chebel, with units available to entrepreneurs at a heavily discounted rent for the first three years of occupancy.
Start-up accelerators and grass roots organisations
Mauritius has its own start-up support in the form of the Ebene Accelerator; a government incubator project designed to help and mentor new start-ups in the field of software development. Those seeking to launch a new business in Mauritius can receive help and advice on everything from web design and online marketing to native mobile apps, intranet solutions and database management. Alongside this, grass roots groups like the Mauritius Software Craftsmanship Community (MSCC) offer developers a great opportunity to learn from peers and foster their expertise.
Making Mauritius a SMART island
According to government figures the ICT sector (Information and Communication Technologies) is currently the third pillar of the economy, and will continue to play an important role in the shift towards making Mauritius a SMART island and preferred ICT destination. Among other initiatives, the WIFI Mauritius Programme has established many free wifi zones around the island, and much capital has been invested in education to encourage development, with 264 computer clubs operating across the country.
The Africa-Asia gateway
In the wider commercial landscape, Mauritius is increasingly recognised as an important player in regional aviation and cargo. Serving as the ideal gateway between Asia and Africa, the new SSR International Airport is continuing plans for its next phase of development, which will see the extension of terminal infrastructure, and the creation of a new 71-hectare Air Cargo and Freeport Zone which will play an important role in the positioning of Mauritius as an international air cargo transhipment hub.
With no huge natural resources to speak of, Mauritius understands that the key to unlocking future commercial success lies in its human capital. Enter the world of international offshore financial services, which is big business in Mauritius. We may be just a small island in the Indian Ocean, but all the main global banks have a presence here and the country is rapidly becoming a major gateway for investment into mainland Africa, China and India. In fact, the financial services industry in Mauritius now contributes 10% of the nation’s GDP.