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Innovation as the core topic of EDB’s interactive workshop

Innovative industries show strong potential to drive growth and create job opportunities. Developing new forms of
renewable energies, Artificial Intelligence or FinTech industry will require the setting-up of a conducive ecosystem.
The Economic Development Board (EDB) has convened an interactive session on Wednesday 17 July 2019 to
discuss this topic with operators in these industries. The prime objective of this meeting, led by the Chief Executive
Officer of the organisation, François Guibert, was to establish a constructive dialogue between EDB and
operators. With a hundred attendees, this workshop - held at the Caudan Arts Centre in Port Louis - had “Fostering
the development of start-ups & Fintech in Mauritius” as its main theme.
During this interactive workshop, innovation was the main subject that the CEO dealt with in his presentation.
“Innovation is of strategic importance for any country and the high-tech industry is without doubt a driver of
economic growth. Mauritius is unique in Africa since it possesses all the required conditions to host the regional
headquarters of any company in this sector. These conditions are the protection of intellectual property, ease of
doing business, conducive fiscal policies, free flow of foreign currencies and the standard of living,” stated the

At the present time, Mauritius has 296 start-ups in innovative technology sector, which employs a total of some 600
people. EDB expects this sector to undergo a strong growth. According to their projections, Mauritius will have some
1000 start-up with a workforce of 2500 people by 2025. In his presentation, François Guibert explained the
numerous support mechanisms implemented by government, namely those announced in Budget 2019-2020.
Access to finance, training, and assistance for marketing on the international stage as well as reviewed fiscal
regimes have been dealt with.

“Many factors account for the success of a company in the innovative industries, and one of them is mentoring. It is
very important for an entrepreneur to get support and advice from a mentor. Our vision is to increase the number of
incubators to ten by 2025. Currently, there are only three in Mauritius,” said the CEO of EDB.
From 2017 to 2018, 30 new start-ups were created, some of which are innovating in sectors such as health,
agriculture and finance. As a concluding note, François Guibert invited the participating companies to be part of
the international roadshows organised by EDB. In so doing, they will make the most of opportunities to penetrate
international markets.



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