The Visionaries – Mobile Mauritius

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How are global geopolitical events affecting mobility in your jurisdiction?

Mauritius as a destination has been always very popular for tourism. We have as many tourists as the number of inhabitants. We are a very open country with visas on arrival for many nationals whether coming as tourists or on business. We are ideally placed between Africa and Asia.

There is a lot happening on the global geopolitical front, with a mixture of different events such as political instability, or changes in government policies, like some neighbour countries pushing some of their residents to migrate elsewhere or looking for a second home. Regionally, we have many southern and eastern Africans who have taken residency in Mauritius. We have also had the COVID-19 outbreak, which has made people go back to their home country, whilst others have taken residency here, so there is ‘two-way traffic’.

It is quite interesting to see how people reacted differently to this crisis. This pandemic has created a lot of distortions with unemployment and inflation being the major factors that make people migrate. Climatic changes have affected many small islands and Mauritius has not been spared. We have cyclones and floods every year which is another factor people consider.

Trade policies have created migration such as from India and Africa. We also have the Russia-Ukraine war which has also seen Russians and Ukrainians migrating with families, including to Mauritius.

Needless to say, there are also people moving out of Mauritius to destinations such as Canada, Australia, and Europe. That said, Mauritius is a very open country and many who had emigrated have in fact returned after a few years abroad. It’s a constant situation of people moving in and out, which is quite an interesting mobility phenomenon.

Read more in our brand-new publication, The Visionaries