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Highlights Of Cabinet Meeting – Friday 13 October 2023

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The Cabinet met today under the chairmanship of the Deputy Prime Minister, the Hon. Louis Steven Obeegadoo. The highlights of the deliberations are as follows:

  1. Cabinet has agreed to the introduction of the Fisheries Bill into the National Assembly. The main object of the Bill is to repeal the Fisheries and Marine Resources Act and replace it by a more appropriate legislative framework following the recommendations made by the Directorate-General for Maritime Affairs and Fisheries of the European Commission and taking into consideration the rapid growth of the fisheries sector worldwide. The Bill, inter alia:
    • takes on board the regional and international obligations as Flag State, Coastal State and Port State and makes provisions:
      • for the management, protection and conservation of marine resources, biodiversity and marine ecosystems;
      • to enable the sustainable development of fisheries and aquaculture; and
      • to ensure the effective control and enforcement of fishing or fishing related activities and to prevent, deter and eliminate illegal, unreported and unregulated fishing or fishing related activities;
    • takes on board international instruments which have been developed concerning the management of world fishery resources, including resolutions of the Indian Ocean Tuna Commission which establishes a series of legally binding measures covering a wide range of issues;
    • makes new provisions for the removal of wrecks, management of abandoned fishing vessels, deregistration of fishing vessels, management of genetic resources, marking of fishing vessels and issue of stop order for illegal structures, amongst others;
    • makes new provisions for monitoring, control, surveillance and enforcement and also provides for a Fisheries Monitoring Centre which will be responsible for the monitoring of the vessel monitoring system, the electronic reporting system and the automatic identification system; and
    • provides for tougher penalties to deter illegal activities, while fixed penalties are being introduced with regard to less serious offences.

In addition, the Bill caters for the recommendations of the Commission of Inquiry on Drug Trafficking Report 2018, where it would be mandatory to notify relevant authorities when going on fishing expeditions.

  1. Cabinet has agreed to the signing of a Letter of Intent by the Higher Education Commission (HEC) and the Mauritius Qualifications Authority (MQA), with UNESCO’s International Institute for Educational Planning (IIEP-UNESCO), for a research project on micro- credentials, in Mauritius.

The benefits of embarking on the action-research pilot study project on micro-credentials are, inter alia, as follows:

  • both the HEC and the MQA would learn from the expertise and obtain the support of professionals from the IIEP-UNESCO in the field of micro-credentials to build capacity of the staff involved in the project; and
  • the report would allow the development of an appropriate framework for Mauritius by assessing the existing standards and quality assurance processes.
  1. Cabinet has agreed to the Ratification of the Memorandum of Agreement on the establishment of the SADC Centre for Renewable Energy and Energy Efficiency, through the Instrument of Ratification. The overall objective of the SADC Centre for Renewable Energy and Energy Efficiency is to contribute towards increased access to modern energy services and improved energy security across the SADC Region by promoting market-based uptake of renewable energy and energy efficient technologies and energy services.

The SADC Centre for Renewable Energy and Energy Efficiency would act as a regional platform through which development partners could assist the SADC region in the renewable energy and energy efficiency sectors in a harmonised manner as well as coordinate support from development partners.

  1. Cabinet has agreed to the signing of Memoranda of Understanding between the Financial Intelligence Unit of Mauritius and:
  • the Financial Intelligence Analysis Unit of the Republic of Malta; and
  • the Unit A Hellenic Anti-Money Laundering Authority of the Hellenic Republic (Greece).

The respective Memoranda of Understanding set out the arrangements between the two institutions to facilitate swift exchange of information and to assist on the development of intelligence picture on Money Laundering and Terrorist Financing cases, with a view, inter alia, to:

  • establishing a basis for the development of an effective collaboration mechanism in the exchange of information and improving the coordination and efficiency of cooperation efforts;
  • cooperating by providing information or intelligence to each other, on the basis of reciprocity to assist in the analysis concerning cases of persons suspected of having engaged in money laundering, associated predicate offences, terrorism financing, or proliferation of weapons of mass destruction; and
  • developing and expanding the framework of cooperation.
  1. Cabinet has taken note of the activities being organised by the Ministry of Arts and Cultural Heritage in collaboration with the Aapravasi Ghat Trust Fund to commemorate the 189th Anniversary of the Arrival of Indentured Labourers in Mauritius.

A Wreath Laying Ceremony would be held on Wednesday 01 November 2023 at the Lotus Monument site at Antoinette Phooliyar, Barlow. The official ceremony for the Commemoration of the 189th Anniversary of the Arrival of Indentured Labourers in Mauritius would take place at the Aapravasi Ghat World Heritage Site on 02 November 2023.

  1. Cabinet has taken note of the activities being organised by the Ministry of Health and Wellness to mark World Diabetes Day 2023, which is observed worldwide on 14 November every The theme of this year is “Access to Diabetes Care”.

The following activities would be organised to mark World Diabetes Day 2023:

  • screening for NCDs, including diabetes, in the community and at worksites;
  • distribution of pamphlets on diabetes related topics to sensitise the public on complications associated with the disease, the importance of having a healthy diet and practising physical activity;
  • talks on the risk factors of type 2 diabetes mellitus in Social Welfare Centres, Women Centres and Community Centres throughout the Island; and
  • special interventions on MBC TV and radio to sensitise the public on healthy lifestyle and prevention of diabetes, including the ‘Priorité Santé’ programme.
  1. Cabinet has taken note of the outcome of the recent participation of the Minister of Environment, Solid Waste Management and Climate Change and the Minister of Labour, Human Resource Development and Training in the Migration Dialogue for Southern Africa Ministerial Meeting in the Democratic Republic of Congo.

The theme of the 2023 Migration Dialogue for Southern Africa Ministerial Meeting was “Promoting Regional Integration through Making Migration Safe, Regular, and Orderly in Southern Africa”.

The Meeting was co-organised by the Government of the Democratic Republic of Congo, the SADC Secretariat and the International Organisation for Migration. It provided a forum for discussing challenges which the SADC region is facing in implementing the Global Compact for safe, orderly and regular migration, a framework which was devised to improve regional cooperation on migration and ways to accelerate its implementation.

  1. Cabinet has taken note of the recent participation of the Attorney General, Minister of Foreign Affairs, Regional Integration and International Trade in the African Union Executive Council Retreat on Agenda 2063 in Kigali, Rwanda, and the Commonwealth Meeting of the Commonwealth Ministerial Action Group in New York.

In the sidelines of the Ministerial Retreat, the Attorney General signed the General Cooperation Agreement and Memorandum of Understanding on Cooperation in the field of Information and Communication Technologies between Mauritius and Rwanda.

In New York, the Attorney General participated in the 23rd Commonwealth Foreign Affairs Ministers Meeting, held in the margins of the United Nations General Assembly. He also attended the Commonwealth Artificial Intelligence Consortium meeting which seeks to deliver on the mandate set out by the 2022 Commonwealth Heads of Government Meeting on equipping citizens with the skills needed to fully benefit from digital innovation and opportunities in cyberspace.

  1. Cabinet has taken note of the outcome of the recent official visit to Rodrigues of the Minister of Environment, Solid Waste Management and Climate Change in the context of the “International Day for the Preservation of the Ozone Layer”. A series of activities were organised as follows:
    • a consultative workshop in the refrigeration and air conditioning sector regarding the preparation of the Kigali Implementation Plan;
    • training of Customs Officers on the provisions of the Montreal Protocol and its enforcement and on the tracking of illegal trade on substances controlled under the Protocol;
    • handing over of training tools and recovery units to Le Chou Multipurpose Training Centre and demonstration on the use of the equipment for the recovery of refrigerants;
    • visit to educational institutions and distribution of copybooks with information on the ozone layer protection to students at primary and secondary schools and the Mauritius Institute of Training and Development; and
    • a radio programme on ozone layer protection.

During the visit, the Minister of Environment, Solid Waste Management and Climate Change also launched a Consultative Workshop on the setting up of an Observatoire Nationale de L’Environnement.

  1. Cabinet has taken note of the reconstitution of the Taxi Operators Welfare Fund Board with Mr Mohammad Parwez Nunnoo, as part-time Chairperson.
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