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Mauritius ranks 13th in the World Bank Doing Business Report 2020

CEO's Message

Dear Valued stakeholders

I am deeply honoured to share this moment of pride, along with all the staff of the Economic Development Board (EDB), on the outstanding performance of Mauritius in the Ease of Doing Business Report 2020, published by the World Bank on 24th October 2019.

Mauritius is now ranked 13th out of 190 countries for doing business, ahead of several major economies, sustaining a continued progress from 25th in 2017 and 20th last year.  Mauritius also comes 1st among African countries and 2nd in the upper middle-income category, just after Malaysia and with the same score.

This recognition by the World Bank reaffirms the competitiveness of Mauritius as a jurisdiction conducive to do business whilst consolidating investor’s trust. Ensuring that Mauritius has a conducive business environment is one of the main mandates entrusted to the EDB. Our Doing Business team has been working in proximity with public and private stakeholders, devising and rolling out a reform plan in concordance with the reform agenda of the Government of Mauritius.

The leadership of the Honourable Prime Minister and Minister of Finance and Economic Development has been instrumental in this success, providing his unflinching and unconditional support and guidance to drive the reform agenda forward. Various structures set up at the Ministry of Finance and Economic Development facilitated reforms implementation and monitoring.

Reforms recognized by the World Bank would not have been possible without the drive and commitment of public sector agencies. I wish to thank all the Ministries and authorities for effectively implementing the reforms proposed and for their continuous involvement and participation in the formulation of strategies and actions for reforms.

I wish to also thank the European Union for funding the “Improving the Business and Investment Climate Project” in Mauritius. This project, which includes amongst others the National Electronic Licensing System, is already showing its benefits to the business environment.

At the level of the EDB, we have set the path to continuously advocate for reforms. Several projects are being implemented and I would once again urge the collaboration of all stakeholders to accompany us in this journey.

Finally, I wish to convey my appreciation and congratulations to our Doing Business Team at the EDB for this great accomplishment.

The EDB is pleased to share with you key insights of the report.

Mr. François Guibert

Chief Executive Officer

 

 

Communiqué 

In its yearly publication released on 24th October 2019, the World Bank ranked Mauritius at the 13th position out of 190 countries assessed; its best ranking ever since the publication of the report in 2007. At the same time, Mauritius consolidates its lead position in the African continent as the best place for doing business. This performance represents a notable leap of 36 places within a span of just 3 years.

According to the World Bank, “Research demonstrates a causal relationship between economic freedom and Gross Domestic Product (GDP) growth, where freedom regarding wages and prices, property rights, and licensing requirements leads to economic development”. The Government in Mauritius has laid strong emphasis on providing a conducive business environment to the investor community.

With a Distance-To-Frontier (DTF) score of 81.5, the country crossed the bar of 80 score points for the first time and closing the gap with the best performing economies.

This achievement is the result of the numerous reforms initiated since 2015, across the 10 indicators measured by the report which covers the complete lifecycle of a business. The reform agenda, championed by the Honourable Prime Minister and Minister of Finance and Economic Development with the support of an inter-ministerial committee and several technical working groups, led to deep regulatory changes and administrative improvements in the doing business ecosystem of Mauritius, including the enactment of the Business Facilitation Act 2017 and the Business Facilitation Act 2019.

The implementation of the National Electronic Licensing System (NELS), co-funded by the European Union, with the objective of developing a single electronic window for business licensing, has also been a major contributor in this achievement of Mauritius, particularly in the area of construction permitting where Mauritius is ranked 8th globally.

Mauritius also climbs to the 5th position with a score of 94% in the ease of paying taxes indicator, owing to the sustained reforms implemented by the Mauritius Revenue Authority.

With reforms implemented by the Central Electricity Board over the last 3 years, Mauritius jumped from the 110th position in 2017 to the 28th position with a score of 88%.

Mauritius moved from the 99th position in 2017 to the 23rd position in the Registering Property indicator, following streamlining of the property registration process and improvements in the Mauritius e-Registry System (MERS).

Likewise, Mauritius has improved in other indicators including Starting a Business, Resolving Insolvency and Enforcing Contract.

Whilst this year’s ranking represents a new milestone achieved by the country, the Economic Development Board, with the support of Government, has already laid the pathway to further improve the doing business climate of Mauritius. Major projects such as the National Electronic Licensing System (NELS), the Regulatory Impact Assessment (RIA) Framework, Secured Transactions Reforms, Judicial reforms on commercial matters, reforms on procurement and a major Regulatory Review are strides towards a more conducive business environment.

For more information, we invite you to download the full Doing Business Report 2020 and the Economic profile of Mauritius.