- GDP (PPP):
- $31.6 billion
- 3.5% growth
- 3.7% 5-year compound annual growth
- $23,942 per capita
- Inflation (CPI):
- FDI Inflow:
Mauritius’s economic freedom score is 77.0, making its economy the 13th freest in the 2021 Index. Its overall score has increased by 2.1 points, primarily because of an improvement in labor freedom. Mauritius is ranked 1st among 47 countries in the Sub-Saharan Africa region, and its overall score is above the regional and world averages.
This year, Mauritius solidified its ranking as the economically freest nation in the sub-Saharan Africa region. To achieve membership in the highest Index category (free), the government would have to build on its successes and redouble its efforts to correct its ongoing deficit in government integrity, which persists at a troubling level that is more typical of countries that are ranked much lower overall in economic freedom.
IMPACT OF COVID-19: As of December 1, 2020, 10 deaths had been attributed to the pandemic in Mauritius, and the economy was forecast to contract by 14.2 percent for the year.
Mauritius gained independence from the United Kingdom in 1968. Sir Anerood Jugnauth, a former president, became prime minister for the third time in 2014 but resigned in 2017 in favor of his son Pravind, whose party won a rare parliamentary majority in 2019. Mauritius has undergone a remarkable economic transformation from a low-income, agriculturally based economy to a diversified, upper-middle-income country that has attracted considerable foreign investment and has one of the Africa region’s highest per capita GDPs. The government is trying to modernize the sugar and textile industries while promoting diversification into such other areas as information technology and financial and business services. Services and tourism remain important economic drivers, and maritime security is a priority.
Property rights are respected, and the World Bank’s 2020 Doing Business report ranked Mauritius 23rd out of 190 countries for ease of property registration. Under a legacy hybrid French–British legal system, the judiciary has generally maintained its independence. The prevalence of corruption is low by regional standards, but graft and nepotism remain concerns and are increasingly a source of public frustration.
The personal income and corporate tax rates are a flat 15 percent. Other taxes include a value-added tax. The overall tax burden equals 19.8 percent of total domestic income. Government spending has amounted to 27.1 percent of total output (GDP) over the past three years, and budget deficits have averaged 3.4 percent of GDP. Public debt is equivalent to 62.5 percent of GDP.
Mauritius has improved its protocols for continuation of business during insolvency proceedings. The time needed to apply for a wastewater connection has been shortened. Required severance pay for redundancy dismissals has been greatly reduced, increasing employers’ willingness to hire. According to an IMF budget projection, total government grants, transfers, and subsidies amounted to 4.8 percent of the 2019–2020 budget.
Mauritius has five preferential trade agreements in force. The trade-weighted average tariff rate is 1.0 percent, and 12 nontariff measures are in effect. An efficient and transparent investment framework supports foreign investment inflows. The open investment regime is underpinned by a nondiscriminatory legal system. Private banks dominate the financial sector, and about 90 percent of adult Mauritians have access to a bank account.