Dear Valued Partner
As 2013 draws to an end tomorrow, optimism for a positive year ahead is now confirmed by the latest IMF-Global Economic Outlook Report, which forecasts the world economy to grow by 3.6% in 2014, driven by 2.1% growth in advance economies and a faster growth of developing countries at 5.2%. Africa which registered a moderate growth of 4.8% in 2013 is expected to grow at 5.3% next year. This augurs well for world trade.
These positive projections together with the advancements on the Doha Development Agenda at the recent Ninth WTO Ministerial Conference held in Bali, Indonesia (3-7 December 2013) strengthens the resolution of the 159 member body to promote global trade. The ‘ Bali Package’ contains several ground breaking Agreements to boost global trade with specific attention to trade facilitation and preferential market access for Least Developed Countries. While the former promises to make trade easier and cheaper by cutting red-tape and improving customs procedures, the latter enlarges the circle of direct competitors to Mauritius, the more so, on some of our traditional markets. This is further compounded with the recent approval by EU to provide GSP + status to imports from developing countries, preferential market access to Tuna from Thailand and other Asian countries under the Automatic Tariff Quota which reduces duties from 24% to 6%, and Philippine’s quest for accelerated benefits to access the EU and US markets following Typhoon Haiyan. These changes and others will surely impact world trade by disrupting the global ‘ Production to Consumer’ value-chain and its ensuing collateral damages.
Under such a dynamic global scenario the default option for the future of Mauritius is not to compete on price points, but rather to enhance the overall image of Mauritius as a reliable, viable, compliant and value-adding Sourcing Destination par excellence. Mauritian exporters and would be exporters should understand the regional and global competitive environment encompassing the Production to Consumer value-chain with specific regard to sourcing, retailing, branding and logistics to respond with speed to changes in styles, trends and designs. We need to identify factors driving change in each growth sector and adopt cost effective strategies to strengthen the internationalisation of Mauritian products and services.
To achieve a double digit growth in exports, we need to embed value-addition in the total value-creation chain in our manufacturing processes, we need to innovate and be creative, we need to identify niche opportunities, and above all we need to meet and even exceed international standards and norms in respect of labour laws, safety and security, environment protection and health issues among others. Added to these, we need to sustain the aggressive promotion of Mauritian products on the regional and international markets and we need to build local brands and to improve the export readiness of our exporters. Adopting such a holistic approach will surely shift the spotlight on Mauritius as a reliable ‘Sourcing Destination’. Our exporters can capture larger market shares, improve profitability and margins.
Mauritian Exporters have again proved that they can effectively overcome their vulnerability to exogenous shocks by building their resilience through proactive export promotion and export development strategies. Assisted by TeamEM, our exporters, both EOEs and DOEs, are reaching out to new markets and capitalising on newer opportunities. Latest export figures indicate that Total Exports for the period January to October 2013 recorded a 13.5% increase over to corresponding period last year and Total Exports for the month of October this year is 17% higher than exports of its predecessor month.
As regards Total Domestic exports, it has maintained a steady growth of 7.6% for the period January to October 2013 compared to January to October 2012, i.e from Rs 45.3 bn to Rs 48,8 bn. The results are very encouraging and a precursor of better times ahead.
TeamEM wishes to sincerely thank its stakeholders for their collaboration and in believing in our delivery capacity. We undertake to do our utmost to internationalise their products and to promote Mauritius as a viable Sourcing Destination.
TeamEM also wishes to place on record its appreciation and thanks to Honourable Cader Sayed-Hossen, the Minister of Industry, Commerce and Consumer Protection for his unfailing support, to Mr Amédée Darga, Chairman of Enterprise Mauritius for his commitment and guidance, to the Directors of Enterprise Mauritius for their understanding, and to our colleagues at our Parent Ministry for their collaboration.
At my end, I wish to thank my colleagues for their drive and effort in fulfilling our Mission and in meeting the set targets and objectives. It has been an intense year and I am happy of TeamEM’s contributions to promoting exports from Mauritius.
TeamEM takes this opportunity to wish its Valued Partners, its Stakeholders and Clients and its Well Wishers a Happy and Prosperous New Year 2014.
Chief Executive Officer