The legal reform landscape

After major recent amendments to our laws, the changes to the legal landscape are expectedly fewer this year. 

We see a willingness to push for more transparency and alignment with international best practices, but the intended changes remain vague and difficult to assess for now. 

In the continuity of the Workers Rights’ Act, employees are to benefit from enhanced protection, including in respect of termination.  However, those earning more than Rs100,000 may lose out with an  end-of year bonus calculated as per the End of Year Gratuity Act on basic pay only.

With the lessons learnt from COVID-19, we would have expected sustainability to become an urgent Government priority. We welcome a timid move in the right direction with eco-bins, ban on additional types of plastic, and responsibilisation of producers of certain types of harmful waste.  The absence of much called-for measures on recycling and increased sanctions of pollution-related offences is however disappointing.  

 

We are a Mauritius law firm which is part of the PwC network of firms, but operates independently from all firms in the network. We are part of the world’s largest legal services network by geography, with over 3,500 lawyers in more than 100 countries.

We accompany local and international clients on their projects from inception to execution.

International Best Practices

  • Amendments to Companies Act to increase shareholders’ protection 
  • Registration of Ultimate Beneficial Owners and VAT to be effected upon business registration and company incorporation

  • Improved  efficiency and transparency in public procurement procedures 

  • Service Level Agreements for investors and businesses to be published by public sector agencies

  • Measures to ensure timely enforcement of contracts and settlement of commercial disputes

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Pensions

  • Non-citizens employed by non-citizen contractors exempted from contribution to  National Savings Fund
  • Contribution to National Pension Fund abolished and replaced with Contribution Sociale Généralisée

  • Transfer of accrued benefits allowed from one private pension scheme to another

  • Procedure for transfer of unclaimed funds to a special fund set up by FSC

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Employment

  • Harmonisation of ‘earnings’ definition in Remuneration Regulations
  • End-of-year bonus of employees earning more than Rs100,000 monthly payable on basic pay only under End of Year Gratuity Act

  • Allowance payable to drivers in case of injury while travelling to/from place of work

  • Special allowances for Mauritian and  migrant workers in Export/Non-Export Oriented Enterprise 

  • Avoidance of double payment of Portable Retirement Gratuity Fund where severance allowance is paid

  • Enhanced employee protection against discrimination at the workplace

  • Enhanced protection of workers against abusive termination

  • Reinforcement of provisions against violence at work

  • Facilitation of implementation of the protocol on heavy rainfall for private sectors

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Sustainability

  • Installation of eco-bins and nets on beaches and major sea outfalls
  • Measures to introduce sound management and disposal of empty plastic pesticide containers 

  • Projects to reduce beach erosion, coral bleaching and coral reef degradation 

  • Possession of plastic to become an offence

  • Ban on import, manufacture, sell and supply of  transparent roll-on bags and pocket bags of less than 300 cm2 

  • Responsibility of producers of e-waste, end-of life vehicles and waste batteries for environmental impact of products through product life-cycle

  • Clarification to be brought to the category of persons entitled to appeal an EIA licence

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Construction Industry Development Board

  • Contract value ceilings for contractor grading revised upwards
  • Two or more contractors jointly allowed to undertake works of higher grades as approved by Council

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Gambling Regulatory Authority

  • Additional types of devices allowed as Limited Payout Machines and increase of maximum pay-out from Rs5,000 to Rs10,000
  • GRA empowered to approve new specified events for which ad hoc licence to carry out gaming activities may be granted

  • Increase in tax rates applicable to certain categories of licensees

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Road Advertising

  • Controlled advertising allowed on footbridges

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Contact us

Anthony Leung Shing

Anthony Leung Shing

Country Senior Partner, PwC Mauritius

Tel: +230 404 5071

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