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Doing Business Reforms

EDB collaborates closely with public authorities to drive administrative, legal and infrastructural reforms with main objective to continuously improve the business climate and create an ‘eco-system’ conducive to investment and trade. Facilitating business through simplified administrative procedures, digitalisation and infrastructural investment increases the competitiveness of the business environment, fostering enterprise creation and operation.

The Business Facilitation Directorate within the EDB is tasked to advocate such policy reforms with Government. While remaining attentive to the requirements of the private sector and the prerogatives of the public authorities, the Directorate benchmarks with best practises and leverages the latest technologies to develop the tools and methodologies that will achieve better inter-agency cooperation and modernisation of the business regulatory framework.

Notable achievements and major focus areas are:

Streamlining and Automation of Business Licenses

Government’s drive to digitalise public services was further achieved with the successful deployment of the National Electronic Licensing System in 2018 and of the progressive automation of various business-related licenses. Till date, 12 licenses of varying complexity (and application volume) have been automated. Construction related licenses such as Building and Land Use Permit, the Morcellement Permit, Environment Impact Assessment and Land Conversion Permit were prioritised during the first phase of implementation.

These digitalisation successes have contributed to Mauritius scoring highly in the World Bank’s Doing Business Report, the latest edition of which was published in 2019. Mauritius was ranked 13th among 190 economies in terms of ease of doing business, and more particularly in construction permitting where Mauritius is now ranked 8th globally.

To date:

  • More than 60 000 applications have been received on the platform;
  • On average 500 new business users (public) register on the platform and to date more than 18 000 users have been registered.

More importantly, the usefulness and potential of NELS was demonstrated during the confinement period. While Mauritius was under full lockdown twice during 2020, key public sector agencies hooked to the system were able to continue their operations amidst health and safety restrictions.

The EDB has spearheaded the Business Process-Re-Engineering project to streamline some 165 business-related licenses administered by 14 Ministries and corresponding Public Sector Agencies (PSAs).   The project was successfully completed on 25 July 2019 and recommendations for streamlining of licenses were successfully implemented and enacted through the Business Facilitations (Misc. Provisions) Act 2020.

The streamlining was also carried out in a spirit of forthcoming automation on the National Electronic Licensing System (NELS).

Trade Facilitation

EDB collaborated successfully with Customs and the Mauritius Network Services to deploy the National Single Window, also known as TradeLink across several Ministries and Public Sector Agencies.

TradeLink is an online platform for the application and determination of import permits and subsequent customs clearances.

The implementation of a Maritime Single Window, under the aegis of the Mauritius Ports Authority, and as announced in the National Budget 2020-2021, is ongoing.  The purpose of this system is to provide for online submission and determination of vessel arrival and departure clearances.

The setup of an Integrated Single Window (ISW) has been announced in the Budget 2020-2021, for the integration in one system all activities related to port and management, such as customs declaration and clearance, import/export permitting, linkage with the Maritime Single Window, vessel and cargo management, and others. The EDB is collaborating with Customs for the development the system, connecting all the isolated systems presently in place, including systems of the Mauritius Port Authority, Customs, Cargo Handling Corporation Limited, AML, Mauritius Cargo Community Services, Mauritius Network Services, and the forthcoming Maritime Single Window.