GIS – 11 March, 2019: Mauritius and Madagascar will enter into a new era of cooperation and will work in close collaboration in the fields of tertiary education and scientific research, mutual legal assistance as well as the harmonisation of scientific norms.
In this context, three Memoranda of Understanding (MOUs) were signed this morning in the presence of the Prime Minister, Minister of Home Affairs, External Communications and National Development Unit, Minister of Finance and Economic Development, Mr Pravind Kumar Jugnauth, and the President of the Republic of Madagascar, Mr Andry Nirina Rajoelina, at the Receptorium of the National Assembly in Port Louis.
The three MOUs pertained to: Education so as to facilitate internships and provide additional scholarships as well as to enhance exchange programmes and scientific research; Judiciary in view of the exchange of information in the context of investigations and the fight against illicit trafficking and cross border crimes; and Standards to ensure the harmonisation of scientific norms as well as to facilitate commercial exchanges.
Prior to the signing ceremony, Prime Minister Jugnauth and President Andry Nirina Rajoelina had a Tête-à-Tête followed by a working session whereby various issues of mutual interest were discussed namely: agricultural development; fisheries; air connectivity; maritime corridor and cabotage; visa facilitation; commerce; and bilateral agreements as regards employment.
In a statement to the press following the signature of MoUs, Prime Minister Jugnauth expressed satisfaction regarding the fruitful meeting with the President of Madagascar. The discussions will enable both parties to deepen cooperation in the political, economic and cultural fields, he indicated. Madagascar, he said, is considered as a critical partner for progress in the Indian Ocean region and both countries have expressed a keen interest to build a strong partnership on the basis of concrete projects.
Speaking about agricultural development, the Prime Minister highlighted that the Indian Ocean Commission (IOC) is presently financing feasibility studies to finalise a model of development for maize and soybean, in collaboration with the private sector of Mauritius. Both countries, he pointed out, are determined to provide assistance to their respective private sectors for the implementation of the project, which lies in the context of the regional programme for food security and nutrition of the IOC.
Furthermore, Mr Jugnauth stated that the fisheries sector is a major component of food security and that the joint Commission of Mauritius and Madagascar will finalise a framework agreement on fisheries. Both countries, emphasised the Prime Minister, possess an adequate amount of maritime territory to transform the fisheries sector into a flagship industry.
As regards air connectivity, the Mauritian Prime Minister highlighted that discussions focused on the agreement for an additional weekly flight of Air Mauritius on Antananarivo. Currently six flights are operated. The cabotage project in the Indian Ocean region was also evoked and Mr Jugnauth underlined that the participation of different regional blocs, Members States and international partners is critical.
To facilitate a vibrant Mauritius-Madagascar commercial flux, the Prime Minister expressed his commitment to facilitate trade between the two countries through the establishment of administrative procedures aimed at enhancing the business climate, in particular by offering a modern and efficient custom service.
Mauritius donates USD 100 000 to Madagascar for fight against measles outbreak
In addition, to support the fight against the measles outbreak in Madagascar, Prime Minister Jugnauth, on behalf of the Government of Mauritius, made a donation of USD 100 000 to the Republic of Madagascar.
For his part, President Andry Nirina Rajoelina spoke of the historical bonds that exist between Madagascar and Mauritius and encouraged both countries to elevate the relationship to new heights. He invited Mauritian investors to tap the Malagasy market while adding that Mauritius will be granted 80 hectares for the construction of an industrial park in Madagascar.
The Malagasy President spoke of his determination to propel the tourism industry to new heights in Madagascar through the opening of air traffic. The objective, he stated, is to double the number of tourists which presently stands at 300 000, to 800 000 in the next five years.
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