The last pre-budget consultative meeting, with representatives of consumer associations and other stakeholders was held, on 10 May 2019, in the Lunch Room of the National Assembly in Port Louis, under the chairmanship of the Prime Minister, Minister of Home Affairs, External Communications and National Development Unit, Minister of Finance and Economic Development, Mr Pravind Kumar Jugnauth.
The Vice-Prime Minister, Minister of Local Government and Outer Islands, Minister of Gender Equality, Child Development and Family Welfare, Mrs Fazila Jeewa-Daureeawoo, the Minister of Industry, Commerce and Consumer protection, Mr Ashit Gungah, the Minister of Social Security, National Solidarity, and Environment and Sustainable Development, Mr Eienne Sinatambou, and the Minister of Arts and Culture, Mr Prithvirajsing Roopun, were also present.
Key representatives of Consumer Associations, Women Associations, Environmental Associations, the Civil Society, Non-Governmental Organisations and local artists attended the meeting. Among them were Consumer Advocacy Platform; Consumers' Eye Association;Association des consomateurs de l'A�le Maurice; Association pour la protection de l'environnement et des consommateurs; Association pour le Developpement durable; Action against Global Warming; Link to Life; Women Empowerment Society; Mauritius Taxpayers' Association; Mauritius Council Of Social Services; Bhojpuri Singers and Dancers Association; Troupe Sapsiway; Scuba Diving Association; and Solidarite Rodrigues.
Several issues and propositions were voiced out by each representative. They include, among others: the creation of a National Consumer Commission, a Health Inspectorate Unit, a Food Safety Committee and a Consumer Ombudsman; more competition for imported products; law reinforcement in terms of food safety; stricter control of pesticides and other additives; regulation of advertising to avoid misleading of consumers; investment in blockchain technology; a dedicated hospital for children; the setting up of a Committee for climate change; the construction of a Bhojpuri Cultural Centre; a training school for caregivers; a National Drug Control master plan; the creation of a Musee de l'Ocean; a separate budget for arts and for culture; and ways to make Corporate Social Responsibility more user friendly and practical.
After the meeting, Prime Minister Jugnauth, in a statement to the press, stated that consultations with representatives of consumer associations, NGOs and other stakeholders were very fruitful and positive. He reassured that proposals will be given special attention, while commending the work being done by NGOs and reiterating the aim of Government to help the latters in their endeavours.
Source: Republic of Mauritius