As a middle-income country, Mauritius faced the challenges of a mature developing economy. Rising labour costs were eroding the competitive edge in garment manufacture.
To become a successful business hub for Africa, Mauritius needed to be internationally competitive and be viewed as the most open, investor-friendly and progressive business environment in the world - that is, beyond Africa.
The IPR´s recommendations were based around promoting a shift into higher-value sectors, including financial services, business services and information technology, in order to sustain high growth.
Attracting FDI of this kind would require a focused promotional strategy and a substantial overhaul of the policy and operational framework for FDI in line with worldwide "best practice" standards.
The IPR recommended the following, with a focus on the three sectors of financial services, information technology and marine resources:
- Overhauling the policy and operational framework for FDI in line with "best practice" standards.
- Shifting more forcefully into higher-value sectors.
- Improving infrastructure.
Following the IPR, UNCTAD, with UNDP funding, conducted a review of the country´s fiscal incentives in order to:
- Harmonize these incentives.
- Enhance the position of the country as a regional hub in business and financial services.
- Encourage the return of the members of the Diaspora.