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Home Notice HIGHLIGHTS OF CABINET MEETING: FRIDAY 10 JUNE 2022

HIGHLIGHTS OF CABINET MEETING: FRIDAY 10 JUNE 2022

The Cabinet met today under the chairmanship of the Prime Minister,  the Hon. Pravind Kumar Jugnauth. The highlights of the deliberations are as follows:

  1. Cabinet has agreed to the proclamation of the Electricity Act 2005 and the Central Electricity Board (Amendment) Act 2020, effective as from 10 June 2022.  The following Regulations are being promulgated under the Electricity Act 2005, namely:
  • the Electricity (Safety, Quality and Continuity) Regulations 2022 to ensure the continuity of a safe electricity supply, as per established standards;
  • the Electricity (Metering, Billing and Collection) Regulations 2022 to regulate these activities of the Central Electricity Board;
  • the Electricity (Licensing, Registration and Fees) Regulations 2022 which concern the licensing activity of the Utility Regulatory Authority once it would start its operations; and
  • the Electricity (Transitional Licence) Regulations 2022 to regulate the transitional phase, pending full compliance of the requirements of the legislation by the existing Independent Power Producers and Central Electricity Board.
  • Cabinet has taken note that the Land Surveyors (Diplomas) (Amendment) Regulations 2022 would be promulgated to include in the Schedule the following qualifications in order to enable a person holding these qualifications to be eligible to act as land surveyor in Mauritius:
  • Degree of Bachelor of Science in Surveying and Mapping Science awarded by the University of Newcastle; and
  • BSc (Hons) in Geomatics awarded by the University of Mauritius
  • Cabinet has taken note that the Financial Reporting Council (Rotation of Audit Firm Exemption) Regulations 2022 would be promulgated.  Section 41 of the Financial Reporting Act was amended to provide for the rotation of auditors of a listed company, whereby, “no audit firm shall, within a period of 10 years from its appointment as an auditor of a listed company, audit the accounts of that company for an aggregate period of more than 7 years”.  This provision is applicable to all companies listed on the local stock market even though the primary listing of the company is not in Mauritius.

Cabinet has also taken note that the companies, which are listed on the Stock Exchange of Mauritius and having their primary listing outside Mauritius, would be exempted from the application of section 41A of the Financial Reporting Act, subject to certain conditions. 

  • Cabinet has taken note that the Medical Council (Medical Institutions) (Amendment) Regulations 2022 would be promulgated under the Medical Council Act to include the Université de la Réunion in the recognised list of institutions.
  • Cabinet has agreed to pilgrims proceeding on the Hadj 2022 pilgrimage being exempted from the payment of local airport taxes, namely the Terminal Expansion Fee and the Passenger Solidarity Fee in addition to the Passenger Service Charge and the Passenger Fee.

Cabinet has also taken note that a Hadj Mission led by Mr A. Sairally, Chairperson of the Islamic Cultural Centre has been constituted.  The objectives of the Hadj Mission are mainly to oversee, in close collaboration with Ambassador S. Soodhun, GCSK, Hadj operations in Saudi Arabia and ensure that Mauritian pilgrims perform the Hadj pilgrimage in the best possible conditions.

  • Cabinet has agreed, in principle, to the introduction of a Technology Education Stream at secondary level for students at Grades 10 and 11. The objectives behind the introduction of Technology Education are: 
  • to diversify the educational offerings at Grades 10 and 11; 
  • to promote learner achievement; and
  • to provide a solid foundation for building up future higher-level skills.

Technology Education is necessary to ensure a strong base for programmes offered by the

Polytechnics and the Institute of Technical Education and Technology. The Ministry of Education, Tertiary Education, Science and Technology was working on the details of the project and would come forward with a Strategy Paper on the proposed Technology Education Stream, incorporating a roadmap for its implementation.

  • Cabinet has agreed to Mauritius joining and signing the “Roadmap for Global Food Security-Call to Action” on the invitation of the United States of America.  The Roadmap was issued following the conclusion of the “Global Food Security–Call to Action” Ministerial Meeting convened by the United States from 18 to 19 May 2022, at the United Nations Headquarters in New York.

The Roadmap outlines the principal steps which UN Member States could take to respond to the food crisis. It calls for actions which include assisting key humanitarian organisations providing immediate life-saving humanitarian assistance, keeping food and agricultural markets open, boosting fertilizer production and strengthening long-term agricultural resilience.

  • Cabinet has agreed to the signing of a Memorandum of Understanding between the National Cooperative College and the Vaikunth Mehta National Institute of Cooperative Management of India.  The general principles of collaboration and the areas of cooperation have been defined as follows:
  • short-term courses and long-term programmes where Officials from both organisations, might participate such as Certificate, Diploma, Masters, PhD; 
  • collaboration in joint research of mutual benefit whereby the findings of such research would be disseminated to relevant co-operatives;
  • exchange of information, materials, publications, expertise and other related matters on subject of common interest;
  • officials would be provided with a basic knowledge of the principles and methods used in designing and implementing training programmes for cooperative leaders; and 
  • attachment programmes, study visits and strategic alliances in the areas of training and any other area of knowledge-based activities.
  • Cabinet has taken note of the activities being organised by the Prime Minister’s Office, in collaboration with other stakeholders, to commemorate the International Day Against Drug Abuse and Illicit Trafficking, observed on 26 June, namely:
  • on 26 June 2022, the National Drug Secretariat, in collaboration with the Ministry of Youth Empowerment, Sports and Recreation and the Mauritius Sports Council, would organise sensitisation programme and activities against drug under the Line Up Live Up Programme together with land base and water base activities at Pointe Jérôme Outdoor Centre for around 200 youths aged 14 to 17 years from various regions; 
  • on 27 June 2022, the National Drug Secretariat, in collaboration with the Ministry of Education, Tertiary Education, Science and Technology, would organise a series of activities related to the fight against drug abuse in all primary and secondary schools;  
  • on 28 June 2022, the Forensic Science Laboratory, in collaboration with the University of Mauritius, the Anti-Drug and Smuggling Unit and the Mauritius Revenue Authority, would carry out activities to raise awareness on drug trafficking;
  • on 29 June 2022, a training workshop would be held with educational social workers of the Ministry of Education, Tertiary Education, Science and Technology and coaches of the Mauritius Sports Council who interact directly with vulnerable youths;
  • on 30 June 2022, the Prime Minister’s Office, in collaboration with the Ministry of Education, Tertiary Education, Science and Technology, would commemorate the International Day Against Drug Abuse and Illicit Trafficking at the University of Technology, Mauritius. 

The theme for this year is “Addressing drug challenges in health and humanitarian crises”.

  1. Cabinet has taken note that the United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime (UNODC) would organise a four-week training on Port Security for Port Mathurin as from 18 to 29 July 2022 and from 02 August to 16 August 2022 for Port Louis, with a view to making the world safer from drugs, crime and terrorism.

The objectives of the training courses are to assist the ports in the following manners:

  • enhancing communications between different port agencies to fight crime in ports;
  • sharing of ideas and experiences on countering crime in ports;
  • helping port officials to organise, prepare and respond to emergencies;
  • improving port protection against waterborne terrorist attacks; and
  • ensuring crimes at ports get prosecuted.

The UNODC would also conduct an end of training debrief and inter-agency workshop for national level stakeholders on Port Security on 17 August 2022 in Port Louis.

  1. Cabinet has taken note of the establishment of Standard Operating Procedures (SOPs) and Tools for the Identification and Care of Victims of Trafficking in Persons (TIP) in Mauritius.  A Consultant was appointed by the International Organisation for Migration (IOM) to develop the SOPs to improve the identification and the referral of victims of trafficking.  The SOPs set out the steps to be followed for critical stages in the management of the cases of victims of trafficking.  

The Consultant has also proposed Guidance Tools for the implementation of the SOPs.  Upon the establishment of the SOPs, all relevant stakeholders would be trained on the different stages of their involvement in the case management of Trafficking in Persons through the IOM under the project.

  1. Cabinet has taken note of the outcome of the 8th round of the technical negotiations between the European Union and Eastern and Southern Africa States (ESA-5: Comoros, Madagascar, Mauritius, Seychelles and Zimbabwe) on the deepening of the Interim Economic Partnership Agreement (iEPA), held recently in hybrid virtual mode.

Progress was made in several areas, namely Sanitary and Phyto-sanitary Measures (SPS); Customs and Trade Facilitation; Technical Barriers to Trade; Rules of Origin; Trade in Services, Investment Liberalisation and Digital Trade; Intellectual Property Rights; Dispute Settlement and Institutional Provisions; Transparency in Public Procurement, Competition, Agriculture; and Economic Development Cooperation.

The next round of technical negotiations has been scheduled for September 2022.

  1. Cabinet has taken note of the outcome of the National Conference on Circular Economy, organised by the Ministry of Environment, Solid Waste Management and Climate Change, in collaboration with the United Nations Environment Programme held recently. The programme comprised nine main sessions with 37 high-profile speakers at local, regional and international levels.  They shared best practices, lessons learnt as well as avenues and opportunities to leverage circularity as a key approach to offering systemic solutions for a new economic model.  

The Conference brought valuable insights on regional and international initiatives towards paving the way to bring circularity in economic sectors such as the European Union Circular Economy Action Plan and the Africa Circular Economy Alliance.  The event also served as a networking platform for stakeholders to engage in discussions towards advancing circular economy initiatives at various levels and to bring a revolutionary transition to a more sustainable, low carbon, inclusive and circular economy.

  1. Cabinet has taken note that a Mauritian delegation of 40 members, including 29 athletes and 11 officials are presently participating in the African Senior Athletics Championships in Mauritius.  As at 09 June 2022, Mr Jérémie Lararaudeuse, Mauritian athlete, has won one silver medal in the 110m Hurdles.
  1. Cabinet has taken note of the activities being organised by the Ministry of Health and Wellness during the month of June to mark World Blood Donor Day, celebrated on 14 June. The slogan for World Blood Donor Day 2022 is “Donating blood is an act of solidarity. Join the effort and save

lives”, 

A workshop would be held on 15 June 2022 targeting blood donation campaign organisers, NGOs and technical staff, to develop appropriate strategies for encouraging the young generation to become blood donors so as to overcome the drop in blood donation brought about by ageing blood donors and also to develop a Roadmap in situations of pandemic or other crisis.

The Blood Donors Association would organise, inter alia, the following activities:

  • sensitising the population at large on the need for blood donation.  Awareness campaigns would be conducted on television and radios during the whole month of June;
  • conducting health check-ups, Drawing and Quiz Competitions for Youths and blood donation in the region of Flacq; and
  • organising “blood drives” (blood collection points) dedicated to dialysis patients at four different sites, namely Grand Baie, Cap Tamarin, Belle Rose and Plaisance.
  1. Cabinet has taken note of the situation of the COVID-19 pandemic prevailing across the world.  Some 538.3 million cases have been reported globally, of which 511.5 million persons have been successfully treated.

With regard to Mauritius, as at 08 June 2022, there were 114 active cases of COVID-19, out of which nine were admitted at the New ENT Hospital.  Over the period 02 to 08 June 2022, three deaths were attributed to COVID-19.

Cabinet has also taken note of progress in the COVID-19 Vaccination Programme, including the administration of the booster dose and paediatric dose in the Republic of Mauritius.  

  1. Cabinet has taken note that the test results for the suspected cases of Monkeypox were received on 04 June 2022 and were all negative. Regulations have been made under the Quarantine Act to include Monkeypox as a notifiable disease.

Cabinet has also taken note that the Ministry of Health and Wellness had already ordered primers for PCR tests for Monkeypox.

  1. Cabinet has taken note that in the wake of the implementation of the Metro Express Project Phase 2C from Phoenix to Curepipe, major works would be carried out along Swami Sivananda Avenue from the Roundabout at Leclezio Street up to Malartic Street near the upcoming Curepipe Central Metro Station.  The left lane on Swami Sivananda Street would be closed to traffic from its junction at the Leclezio Roundabout up to the exit of the Curepipe Central Metro Station as from 11 June 2022.

The following traffic scheme would be implemented:

  • traffic coming from the Manhattan Roundabout, along the left lane of Swami Sivananda Avenue, would be allowed to left turn only onto Chasteauneuf Street at the junction with Leclezio Roundabout to proceed towards Curepipe Centre; and
  • only the traffic coming on the right lane of Swami Sivananda Avenue from Manhattan Roundabout would be allowed to proceed straight on Swami Sivananda Avenue at the junction with Leclezio Roundabout.

The necessary traffic signs would be set up to inform and guide road users.

  1. Cabinet has taken note of the introduction of MAUSHIELD, a digital platform aiming at facilitating cyber threat information sharing in Mauritius, developed by the Computer Emergency Response Team Mauritius (CERT-MU).

MAUSHIELD is an open source platform that would be a national system for sharing cyber threat intelligence in real-time and in a secured and confidential manner.  The platform would help public and private sector organisations to improve their cyber defence capabilities and stay ahead of emerging trends and cyber threats. It would also allow various authorities/organisations to conduct cyber threat situational analysis in Mauritius.  The system is expected to go live by end of June 2022.

  • Cabinet has taken note of the outcome of the recent official visit of the Minister of National Infrastructure and Community Development to Rodrigues.  The main purpose of the visit was to sign a Memorandum of Understanding with respect to a framework for collaboration and mutual cooperation between the Road Development Authority and the Commission for Public Infrastructure, Housing, Transport and Water Resources of the Rodrigues Regional Assembly and also to review progress of ongoing drain and road projects being implemented in Rodrigues.  

The Minister paid a courtesy call on the Chief Commissioner of Rodrigues.  Visits were carried out at various sites of road and drain projects being implemented by the National Development Unit and the Rodriguan authorities, namely at Anse Ally, Port Sud Est and Baie Malgache.

  • Cabinet has taken note of the outcome of the recent official visit of the Attorney General, Minister of Agro-Industry and Food Security to Rodrigues.  A meeting was held with the Commissioner of Agriculture, the Rodrigues Regional Assembly, the Agricultural Marketing Board, the Agricultural Research and Extension Services and the Mauritius Shipping Corporation Limited to discuss shipment of fruits and vegetables from Rodrigues to Mauritius.

The Official Ceremony for the Educational Achiever Award Scheme and the Farmers’ Family Fun Day were organised by the Small Farmers Welfare Fund.  The launching of the Public Relation

Unit/Food Agricultural Research and Extension Institute/Small Farmers Welfare Fund Office at Citronelle was also held.  The new office in Rodrigues would enable the effective extension of the welfare schemes and activities of the Small Farmers Welfare Fund to registered farmers.

The issue of fruit fly was raised during discussions and the Entomology Division of the Ministry of Agro-Industry and Food Security would undertake a comprehensive Fruit Fly Control Programme in Rodrigues.

  • Cabinet has taken note of the recent participation of the Minister of Information Technology, Communication and Innovation as Speaker in the World Summit on the Information Society (WSIS) Forum 2022 Ministerial Round Table co-organised in a virtual mode by the International Telecommunication Union, the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organisation, the United Nations Development Programme and the United Nations Conference on Trade and Development.  The theme for this year was “ICTs for Well -Being, Inclusion and Resilience: WSIS Cooperation for Accelerating Progress on the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs)”.  

The Ministerial Round Table was a unique opportunity to build on the lessons learned from previous initiatives of Member States around the above-mentioned topic, enabling Ministers to look into the future by developing a vision of WSIS beyond 2025, especially by leveraging the synergies and complementarities with other UN processes.  

  • Cabinet has taken note of the reconstitution of the Executive Committee of the National Youth Council with Ms Keshikah Sohan as part-time Chairperson.
  • Cabinet has taken note of the constitution of the Board of the Mauritius Recreation Council with Mr Marie Pierrot Stephane Rock as part-time Chairperson.

              Note: Cabinet decisions are available on the internet. The address is http://pmo.govmu.org  

Government Information Service

Prime Minister’s Office

10 June 2022                                                                                                                                                                                                             Port Louis

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