Mauritius-India Cooperation: MoUs and Agreements to further strengthen bilateral relations

The presence of President of the Republic of India, Shri Ram Nath Kovind, during this landmark moment in the history of Mauritius bears testimony to the unique, privileged and special bond between the two countries, a bond that goes beyond government-to-government interaction, to the heart of our people who take pride in the shared heritage and ancestry.

The Prime Minister, Minister of Home Affairs, External Communications and National Development Unit, Minister of Finance and Economic Development, Mr Pravind Kumar Jugnauth, made this statement this afternoon in Port-Louis, during a joint press statement with the President of the Republic of India, Shri Ram Nath Kovind, in the context of the State visit to Mauritius on the occasion of celebrations marking the 50th anniversary of the Independence of the Republic of Mauritius.

In the spirit of a further revitalisation of the Indo-Mauritian relationship, various Memoranda of Understanding (MoUs) and Agreements were exchanged. These are:

a renewed programme for cultural cooperation for another four years, until 2021. The Agreement will ensure exchanges in the field of culture, arts, literature and languages

an MoU between the Ministry of Ayurveda, Yoga and Naturopathy, Unani, Siddha and Homoeopathy in India and University of Mauritius (UOM) pertaining to the establishment of an academic chair in Ayurveda. This will help UOM to undertake academic and research activities in Ayurveda in Mauritius.

an MoU between the Public Service Commission of Mauritius and the Union Public Service Commission of India. It pertains to an exchange of experience on modern approach to public service recruitment and selection including the use of IT infrastructure for the expeditious scrutiny and speedy disposal of applications.

an MoU for the establishment of the Nalanda University, an international institution, to be located in the Rajgir, Nalanda district in the State of Bihar. It aims at fostering regional networking and collaboration with existing centres of excellence in East Asia. It also seeks to contribute to regional peace and imparting education and capacity in the domains of philosophy, language and other areas.

In a statement to the media, Prime Minister Jugnauth highlighted that Mauritius has embarked on an ambitious development path wherein the Government is creating a modern country built on new pillars of growth namely, innovation, infrastructural advancement, and more importantly through an inclusive development.

In this respect various projects to this end have been initiated, under financial assistance and a line of credit provided by India in November 2016 and May 2017 respectively. The Metro Express, he said, is one of the pillars of that transformation poised to change the infrastructural landscape of the country and pave the way towards modernising and redefining the public transport system of Mauritius.

Mr Jugnauth recalled that the discussions he had with the Indian President were in parallel with those he had in May 2017.with Prime Minister Narendra Modi during his State visit to India. He emphasised that the highly productive outcomes of these discussions brought forth a new era of cooperation between the two countries, wherein we are now strategic partners in development and innovation and cooperation.

The Prime Minister also expressed gratitude to India for its unwavering support in the longstanding struggle of Mauritius to complete its decolonisation process so as to be able to effectively exercise its sovereignty over the entirety of its territory, including the Chagos archipelago. In regard to that, he underlined that India has presented a written statement to the International Court of Justice on the legal consequences of the dismemberment of Chagos from Mauritius in 1965.

For his part the Indian President emphasised that Mauritius and India share a longstanding strong bilateral relation that is anchored in the ancestral links that has been further cemented with the exchange of MoUs and Agreements. Based on the foundation of deep mutual trust and confidence, both countries have embarked on a new era of intensive cooperation, he added.

He underlined that more than 25 priority projects are underway in Mauritius with the Indian assistance and that the two countries are working together on key issues including climate change. The President also announced that India will supply a petrol vessel to Mauritius under a new line of credit.

Prior to the exchange of MoUs and agreements, the Indian President had a delegation-level meeting with Prime Minister Jugnauth at the Government House. Both leaders exchanged views on a range of global and regional issues and agreed to continue supporting each other and cooperate closely on common challenges and interest.

Source: Government of Mauritius