Mauritius and Reunion will set up a Joint Economic Commission (JEC) for the region to open new avenues of cooperation between the two countries.
This agreement was concluded during the visit of the Minister of Finance and Economic Development, Mr Vishnu Lutchmeenaraidoo and his delegation to Reunion Island from 31 May to 3rd June, where it was decided by the Regional Council of Reunion Island and the Government of Mauritius to define an operational road map for the implementation of projects of mutual interests as both countries share several similarities.
The first meeting of the Joint Commission which will meet once every year is scheduled on 7 and 8 September in Mauritius. The coming into operation of the JEC will reinforce the common vision of both countries for the region by developing new spheres of cooperation in terms of capacity building, human resources through the sharing of expertise and skills and also to boost investment as well as job creation.
Moreover, it will give further spur to cross-border cooperation between Mauritius and Reunion Island and help both countries to take concerted actions, effective strategies and cooperation at regional level to better face international competition and challenges.
Other areas of development discussed during the mission pertained to identifying and exploring new opportunities to increase trade. To this end, the Mauritian side proposed the abolition of customs duties on products manufactured in Reunion and exported to Mauritius.
With regards to improving air connectivity, the possibility of a reduction in the air fare on the routes Mauritius -Reunion-Rodrigues was also raised and will be finalized during the first meeting of the JEC in Mauritius.
Among other topics on the agenda: transfer of skills, technology and capital, especially in the setting up of technology parks as well as digital connectivity; renewable energy and the “SMART Agriculture”-sustainable agriculture with a view to allow the industry to ensure a significant share of domestic food production in the medium term.
As for the bilateral relations, focus was laid on the establishment of a framework for economic cooperation that is conducive to strengthen exchanges between the Indian Ocean islands whereby the Reunion authorities have expressed interest to partner with Mauritius to develop the Special Economic Zones project in Madagascar.
Originally from All Africa