Coming together to tackle the Covid-19

The coronavirus will lead to a global economic recession/downturn which will impact Mauritius, even if the blow caused by the pandemic on our country is impossible to evaluate at this stage.

The Covid-19 is already impacting the lives of all Mauritians and all our business, big and small, even if we cannot evaluate the extent of this impact yet. We do know however that the economic impact will arrive in different ways : firstly, through the direct health and economic impact of the virus itself on our population. Then on the potential hardship which our tourism industry will face, on the falls in commodity prices, on the trade disruptions, on potential drops in investment and finance flows. Therefore, while working in close collaboration with the authorities and other relevant stakeholders on different fronts, Business Mauritius has structured itself by setting up six Covid-19 response committees in order to best respond to the social and economic threats caused by the health crisis we are facing.

Health
Committee

Economy Recovery
Committee

Cross Border
Logistics Committee

Food, Necessary Supplies
and Energy Committee

Human Resources
Committee

Communication
Committee

Solidarity
Committee

The Mauritian business community’s response to COVID-19 will benefit from many years of capacity building efforts of our resilient business community.

Be SAFE-Together we can overcome Covid-19!

About the health committee

The objective of this Committee is to focus on building capacity for the healthcare sector in the present context, with the aim of strengthening the coordination and potential partnership between the Public Sector and the business community in order to optimise the country’s resilience in its fight against Covid-19.

The Committee will help in adjusting, when possible, the various mechanisms being deployed to ensure that all, in the private health-related sectors, are adequately equipped to optimally partner the public sector in its efforts to face this unprecedented crisis.

Various sub-committees are looking into a wide scope of items such as medical supplies, proactive onboarding and deployment of medical staff, sourcing of PPEs, the possibility of conducting private testing as well as that of proposing additional bed facilities in case public health facilities, at some point, can no longer meet demand.

This committee is headed by Philippe Espitalier-Noël

Economy Recovery Committee

The objective of the Committee on Economic Recovery is to focus on the post Covid-19 economic recovery. It will serve as a platform for dialogue and formulation of recommendations on economic strategies and policies in the context of COVID-19. It will also look into relevant economic measures being proposed by the authorities with a view to ascertaining their likely impact on businesses and proposing any enhancements thereof for optimal efficiency.

The Committee will work on short and medium-term recommendations for easing the path for businesses to recover economically.

This committee is headed by Gilbert Gnany.

Cross border logistics Committee

The COVID-19 pandemic is not just a health and financial crisis, but also a logistics havoc with huge surges and drops in both the demand and supply of certain goods, at certain times. In order for this not to heavily impact consumers, this Committee will formulate recommendations on cross border logistics during the period that free flow of goods is hindered with the drastic reduction of flights - and therefore air freight to and from Mauritius - and by potential issues in the port’s operations due mainly to the confinement/curfew period.

The Committee will:

  • Identify the challenges faced by operators importing essential goods
  • Work on immediate measures to reduce/eliminate roadblocks as and when required for acceptable flow of goods
  • Formulate solutions in advance to facilitate imports and trade in general, particularly essential goods
  • Identify, at a later stage, challenges faced by economic operators in the sectors that presently face lesser emergencies - mainly for the export of goods to keep the economy running and ready for recovery

This committee is headed by Vishal Nunkool.

Food, necessary supplies and energy Committee

Today’s priority in Mauritius is access to essential food supplies. As such, the Food, Essential Supplies and Energy (FESE) Committee has been focusing on understanding the constraints and coordinating short-term operational supply of food. Immediate constraints such as the Work Access Permits (WAPs) and the operators’ ability to work efficiently during confinement as well as the need to establish a clear protocol for business continuity in case of working employees falling sick is being closely looked into and different scenarios and solutions are being envisaged.

The committee also has the mandate to work on recommendations for short-term support measures including potential solutions to address cash flow issues and pressures on employment.

Furthermore, the committee will also take a longer-term view and devise strategies to ensure that the various sectors of food, essential supplies and energy are not overly affected and remain viable despite present circumstances. An important focus area will be on what can be done to avoid impacting beyond repair our local production capacity.

This committee is headed by Cédric de Speville.

Human Resources Committee

In this time of crisis, the Human Resources Committee has the double objective of providing support to guide members on people management issues during the pandemic and to look into employment policies which would prepare the business community for the best possible economic recovery.

The committee will, therefore, be looking into ways and means to provide key policy responses that focus on the crucial role of our human capital in achieving a sustained and equitable recovery. The task ahead will be a difficult balancing act between providing a post Covid-19 human-centred approach to growth and development which will involve short, medium and long-term HR measures and what will be a much-needed stimulation of business.

This committee is headed by Madhavi Ramdin Clark

Communication Committee

The BM Communication committee is chaired by Bertrand Casteres and is composed of members from creative agencies, communication departments and BM communication team.

Solidarity Committee

The objective of this committee is to optimize the operation of the NGOs network; find solutions and to structure/ coordinate with the relevant authorities/NGOs, so as to provide support during the Covid-19 lockdown and the next 3 to 6 months to vulnerable families who are on the SRM and the non-SRM list

  • Composition of the committee: NGOs, representative of NSIF
  • Actions taken so far: Distribution of food packs to vulnerable families by NGOs.
  • Further action: Data collection of the vulnerable families will be carried out through a survey to be undertaken by NGOs.

This committee is headed by Harold Mayer.

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Touch

BM Monitoring Unit (Special COVID-19 Support Team)

business@businessmauritius.org