The Economic Development Board (EDB) marks a new beginning in the economic landscape of Mauritius. It heralds a new chapter in economic planning, investment, trade promotion & facilitation. The EDB commenced its operations as a statutory body on 15th January 2018 following the merger between the Board of Investment, Enterprise Mauritius and the Financial Services Promotion Agency.
The overarching objective of the EDB is to ensure greater coherence and effectiveness in implementing policies and actions and draw the vision for the economic development path to be adopted to reach a high-income economy status.
The mandate of EDB is to, inter alia:
a) provide strong institutional support for strategic economic planning and ensure greater coherence and effectiveness in economic policy formulation;
b) promote Mauritius as an attractive investment and business centre, a competitive export platform as well as an International Financial Centre (IFC);
c) act as the main institution responsible for country branding for investment promotion; and
d) facilitate both inward and outward investment and ensure a conducive business environment.
The functions of the EDB are to:
a) provide high-level strategic and policy advice to Government on economic policy formulation;
b) initiate and undertake necessary economic research at the macro-economic level, engage with stakeholders on economic matters and formulate investment and trade promotion policies, plans and strategies;
c) co-ordinate efforts across different institutions and public-sector agencies for economic diversification, upgrading of existing economic sectors and promoting efficiency in export promotion;
d) advise Government on appropriate policies and strategies for socio-economic development, trade development, export and investment promotion, infrastructure development, labour market improvement and business facilitation;
e) advise on, and facilitate, the development of major projects which are of significance or strategic importance to the economy;
f) monitor and evaluate the outcomes of policies and projects;
g) improve business environment and undertake such other activities as may be necessary to promote Mauritius as an attractive base for investment and as an international financial centre;
h) identify opportunities in new economic sectors and engage with international partners to develop strategic alliances to create the appropriate ecosystem for these sectors;
i) spearhead outward investment and assist in developing joint ventures and partnership agreements;
j) act as the single interface with all investors and liaise with relevant authorities for the registration of investors and to facilitate the issue of licences or permits, or the granting of authorisations or clearances;
k) manage the Film Rebate Scheme, the Integrated Resort Scheme, the Investment Hotel Scheme, the Mauritian Diaspora Scheme, the Property Development Scheme, the Real Estate Development Scheme or such other Scheme as the Minister may approve;
l) issue such directions to relevant agencies and authorities as may be necessary for the timely issue of licences and permits and the granting of authorisations and clearances;
I. request from relevant authorities the grounds for refusal of any licence, permit, authorisation or clearance; and
II. issue such directions to public sector agencies and other relevant authorities as may be necessary for the review and re-engineering of the procedures relating to licences, permits, authorisations and clearances and for the publication of appropriate guidelines.
As an apex body operating under the aegis of the Prime Minister’s Office, the EDB synergises efforts across all ministries and with private stakeholders to meet the set goals. The EDB is responsible to drive research projects and lead initiatives with other stakeholders and address issues such as mismatch in the education and labour system, the impact of an ageing population, adoption of technology and innovation, infrastructural development, and opening of the economy, amongst others.
The business facilitation agenda of the EDB will, on the other hand, ensure that projects are swiftly implemented by ensuring that time-frames are respected by licensing authorities. EDB will ensure that no undue delay is caused due to unnecessary and overly burdensome administrative procedures. The national e-licensing platform is being implemented to curtail inefficiencies and provide more certainty to the business community.