GIS - 26 November, 2013: Mauritius is aspiring to transform its economy into a knowledge economy and position itself as a hub of excellence in the region. Several initiatives have already been undertaken geared towards preparing the manpower requirement for the coming years.
The Vice-Prime Minister, Minister of Finance and Economic Development, Mr Xavier-Luc Duval, made this statement at the official opening of a World Customs Organisation (WCO) Multilingual Regional Training Centre (RTC) for Eastern and Southern Africa (ESA), yesterday afternoon at the Custom House in Mer Rouge. Mr Duval also highlighted that the resilience of the economy will depend heavily on training and multi-skilling of the workforce.
He further said that the Customs Department being the first contact point of visitors and investors in Mauritius have to keep-up with the economic challenges of the 21st century by improving their working methods and ensuring the expected levels of service delivery which he said, can be achieved through the RTC.
According to him, Mauritius has always assumed its responsibilities vis-à-vis the countries in the region in terms of sharing of experience and good practices and the country, he added, has a good track record in terms of capacity building. He also placed on record the contribution of the International Monetary Fund (IMF) Training Centre for Sub-Saharan Africa established in Mauritius to facilitating training of government officials in the formulation and implementation of macroeconomic policies.
For his part, the Director General of the MRA, Mr Sudhamo Lal, said that the RTC will increase the visibility and credibility of the MRA on the regional and international scene. In addition to promoting more regional and international alliances and networking with overseas Customs authorities, Mr Lal added that it will give direct access to professional Customs training which will widen the scope for capacity building of MRA officers and at the same time upgrade its service standards.
The Director of Customs, Mr J. J. Lenaghan, as for him, highlighted the crucial role of the WCO RTC in Mauritius which will be geared towards fostering the WCO’s capacity building agenda to build a modern, efficient and effective customs administrations in the Eastern and Southern Africa region.
The Secretary General of the World Customs Organisation, Mr Kunio Mikuriya, spoke on the crucial role of Customs with regard to regional integration.
The Mauritius Revenue Authority (MRA) has been selected by the WCO to host the RTC as part of the WCO initiative to optimise resources in the region and in line with government’s objective of making of Mauritius a Knowledge Hub.
The RTC represents the 25 of its kind adding to the existing Centres across the world and is the fourth one in the WCO ESA region. It will be managed by the Human Resource and Training Department of the WCO in collaboration with the Customs Department and will carry out two capacity building programmes on a yearly basis in all the regions’ languages comprising mostly of English, French and Portuguese.
The Centre will enable the WCO achieve its mission of enhancing Customs administrations in the WCO ESA region thereby helping these Customs administrations to make an important contribution to the development of international trade and to the socio-economic well-being of their country.
Under the WCO strategy the RTC has four main objectives namely: development of regionally relevant training; maintenance of specialist trainer pools; provision of specialist training at a regional level; and development and support of the WCO’s blended learning programme. Moreover, it has as task to develop and maintain annual training plans and work in partnership with the private sector to maintain effective relationships between Customs and economic operators as well as assist Member countries in their training needs.
Government Information Service, Prime Minister’s Office, Level 6, New Government Centre, Port Louis, Mauritius. Email: firstname.lastname@example.org Website: http://gis.gov.mu