UK and Mauritius signs Strategic Trade Partnership to boost investment and trade

Mauritius: A Strategic Trade Partnership (STP), which will help boost trade and investment between the UK and Mauritius across a range of priority sectors, including financial and professional services, waste management, green economy, education, cyber, pharmaceuticals, biotechnology and agritech, was signed, yesterday at the Caudan Arts Centre, in Port Louis.

UK and Mauritius signs Strategic Trade Partnership to boost investment and trade
UK and Mauritius signs Strategic Trade Partnership to boost investment and trade Image credit: Mauritius facebook page

Mauritius: A Strategic Trade Partnership (STP), which will help boost trade and investment between the UK and Mauritius across a range of priority sectors, including financial and professional services, waste management, green economy, education, cyber, pharmaceuticals, biotechnology and agritech, was signed, yesterday at the Caudan Arts Centre, in Port Louis.

The signatories were the Acting Minister of Finance, Economic Planning and Development, Minister of Industrial Development, SMEs and Cooperatives, Soomilduth Bholah, and the UK Prime Minister’s newly appointed Trade Envoy to Mauritius, Andrew Selous, Member of Parliament. The British High Commissioner to Mauritius, Charlotte Pierre, as well as representatives from the public and private sectors, were also present.

Advertisement

In his address, Minister Bholah pointed out that the STP bears testimony to the UK’s commitment to supporting Mauritius’ trade agenda and to deepening its trade partnership with Mauritius as we continue to face the consequences of the war in Ukraine.

“The UK-Mauritius STP is a key milestone in the history of economic relations that exists between our two countries. It epitomises the determination, willingness, and drive of our two nations to nurture and grow further the bilateral trade and investment relations. It establishes a platform to reduce investment risks, respond to the demand for skills and review market conditions to encourage investors”, he added.

Minister Bholah indicated that the UK is one of Mauritius’ largest trading partners, adding that our economic ties are built on a shared commitment to free and fair trade. He further recalled that to safeguard our trade preferences, Mauritius, along with three other African countries, namely Madagascar, Seychelles, and Zimbabwe, signed an agreement with the UK in January 2019 known as the UK-ESA EPA, which came into force on 01 January 2021.

Moreover, he dwelt on the strong trade in services between the UK and Mauritius, particularly in the financial and professional services sectors. He recalled that there are a number of British-owned firms operating in Mauritius in different sectors ranging from banking, insurance, ICT, education, renewable energy, manufacturing, hospitality and real estate.

For his part, Mr Selous said that the STP is a significant milestone that will see the UK-Mauritius trade relationship take to new heights. He recalled that as the UK Prime Minister’s Trade Envoy, his mission is to support and boost trade and investment between the two countries. His aim, he underlined, is to build prosperity, eliminate poverty, and create opportunities for the people of both our countries. 

He also extended an invitation to Prime Minister Jugnauth to participate in the UK-Africa Investment Summit scheduled on 23 and 24 April 2024. The Summit will bring together Heads of State and Government from 24 African countries with British and African business leaders. It will strengthen UK-African partnerships to create jobs and growth, supporting British and African talent in sectors such as finance and technology, and promote women entrepreneurs, he highlighted.

Advertisement

As for the British High Commissioner, Ms Pierre, she underlined that the current relationship between the UK and Mauritius is worth over Rs 40 billion annually. It is, therefore, critical to work harder and to push new frontiers of innovation in new industries of the future, she said.

The UK Prime Minister’s Trade Envoy Programme

The UK Prime Minister’s Trade Envoys are a network of appointed parliamentarians drawn from the House of Commons/House of Lords and across the political spectrum. The role is unpaid and voluntary. Trade Envoys engage with their respective markets where substantial trade and investment opportunities have been identified by the UK government. They support the drive for economic growth by building on the UK’s existing relations with these markets. In addition, they promote Britain in the world.

The Prime Minister’s Trade Envoy Programme began in 2012. There are currently 35 Prime Minister Trade Envoys covering 65 markets.