News

 “Meeting between Hon. Pravind Kumar Jugnauth, Prime Minister of the Republic of Mauritius and Rt. Hon. Theresa May, Prime Minister of the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland"

Hon. Pravind Kumar Jugnauth, Prime Minister of the Republic of Mauritius and Rt. Hon. Theresa May, Prime Minister of the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland

At the request of the UK Authorities, Honourable Pravind Kumar Jugnauth, Prime Minister of the Republic of Mauritius, met Rt. Hon. Theresa May, British Prime Minister on 18 March 2019 at 10, Downing Street, London. Also present were Hon. David Lidington UK Deputy Prime Minister, High Commissioner H.E. Girish Nunkoo and Ambassador H.E. Jagdish Koonjul, Permanent Representative of Mauritius to the UN. Welcoming Hon. Jugnauth, the British Prime Minister emphasized the good relations between Mauritius and UK and expressed her desire to further deepen these relations by exploring new avenues of cooperation and joint initiatives in various sectors of interest to Mauritius. With respect to the Advisory Opinion on the Chagos Archipelago delivered by the International Court of Justice (ICJ) on 25 February 2019, Rt. Hon., Theresa May recalled the initial and consistent position of the UK that the Chagos Archipelago issue was a bilateral one and wished that both countries continue to discuss solutions bilaterally. The Mauritius Prime Minister thanked Prime Minister May for making time to meet him and welcomed the offer of the UK to deepen and further consolidate the relations. He pointed out the Advisory Opinion is about the decolonization of Mauritius and was requested by the UN General Assembly, which will now consider appropriate action. In that regard. Prime Minister Jugnauth stated that Mauritius and other countries will be tabling a draft resolution at the United Nations General Assembly towards the end of April, and indicated the willingness of Mauritius to work with the UK in order to produce a joint draft to give effect to the Advisory Opinion, which could offer a win-win situation. The British Prime Minister stated that the UK Authorities were still studying the Advisory Opinion and its implications for the UK Government. She suggested that the two Permanent Representatives in New York should pursue consultations, and that she would, in the near future, send a Foreign Office Minister to Mauritius to hold further discussions. . Concrete proposals are being awaited from the UK side on the implementation of the Advisory Opinion. Whilst awaiting such proposals the Prime Minister indicated that Mauritius would proceed expeditiously with a draft resolution in the UN General Assembly, to implement the Advisory Opinion.

 “Interaction between the High Commissioner, HE Mr Girish Nunkoo and the Mayor of the City of Westminster, Mrs Lindsay Hall”

The High Commissioner of Mauritius to the United Kingdom, HE Mr Girish Nunkoo was invited by the Mayor of the City of Westminster, Mrs Lindsay Hall in the context of a civic engagement organised by the Westminster Council with the Diplomatic Corps in London on Tuesday 2 April 2019. High Commissioner, HE Mr Girish Nunkoo and the Mayor of the City of Westminster, Mrs Lindsay Hall The Westminster area of London holds city status and several well-known sites are located there namely St. James's Palace, Buckingham Palace, the Palace of Westminster (Houses of Parliament) and 10 Downing Street. The city has a prized value both in terms of national heritage and contribution to the UK economy given that the shopping areas around Oxford Street, Regent Street, Piccadilly and Bond Street as well as the night-time entertainment district of Soho are also within its perimeter. The High Commissioner commended the initiatives of the Council in the creation of responsible business activity and social value in Westminster. He further indicated that the future of any country is shaped by the actions of its people, its businesses and more importantly its local bodies operating within the framework of its government. HE Mr. Nunkoo further availed of the opportunity to raise the possibility of collaboration in the preservation of heritage assets especially in view of the measures being taken by the City to bring new and sustainable eco-friendly life to its historic buildings and sites and improving access to heritage assets to ensure they can be used and enjoyed by all and further meet the needs of future communities and businesses. It is to be noted that the exceptional legacy of the Westminster City with its historic buildings and spaces draws a significant number of visitors from across the world and consequently makes a vital contribution to its success as well as its economic prosperity

 “Courtesy Call on High Commissioner H.E. Girish Nunkoo by H.E. Valladares Molina, Ambassador of Guatemala in London and accredited to Mauritius”

On 01 March 2019, H.E. Valladares Molina, Ambassador of Guatemala in London accredited to Mauritius, paid a courtesy visit on High Commissioner H.E. Girish Nunkoo. He congratulated Mauritius for the Advisory Opinion of the International Courts of Justice and added that Guatemala will offer its staunch support to Mauritius on the Chagos Archipelago issue.

High Commissioner H.E. Girish Nunkoo receiving H.E. Valladares Molina, Ambassador of Guatemala in London during a courtesy call

High Commissioner, H.E. Girish Nunkoo seized the opportunity to thank Guatemala for having supported UN resolution 71/292 (request for the International Courts of Justice Advisory Opinion on the legal consequences of the separation of the Chagos Archipelago from Mauritius in 1965) and at the same time, provided written and oral responses to the Court. He further expressed the wish for deeper collaboration and cooperation between Mauritius and Guatemala. It is recalled that H.E. Valladares Molina presented his Credentials to the President of the Republic of Mauritius on 14 July 2017 as Ambassador Extraordinary and Plenipotentiary of Guatemala to Mauritius with residence in London.

 “Commonwealth event - Education World Forum”

H.E. Girish Nunkoo, High Commissioner of Mauritius in London, attended an event organised by the UK Foreign and Commonwealth Office in the margin of the Education World Forum. The event, held at Lancaster House in London, brought together Ministers of Education and delegations from Commonwealth Member States participating in the Education World Forum which took place in London from 21 to 23 January 2019. The Education World Forum is organised by the private sector in partnership with the UK government and the British Council and is the largest gathering of education ministers in the world. It was attended by delegates from 65 countries, including many Commonwealth countries. Lord Ahmad of Wimbledon, Minister of State for the Commonwealth and United Nations at the Foreign and Commonwealth Office, and the Rt. Hon. Nick Gibb MP, Minister of State at the UK Department for Education, opened the event and put emphasis on the need for Commonwealth member states to exchange ideas and share expertise on best practices, with particular reference to quality education for girls. The event was also attended by representatives of the UK education sector. High Commissioner Girish Nunkoo availed of the opportunity to engage with the Rt. Hon. Nick Gibb MP, and discuss with representatives of the education sector from the UK as well as other Commonwealth member states.

 “Meeting with Francois Guibert, CEO of the Economic Development Board (EDB) held on 05 February 2019”

On 5 February 2019, H.E. Girish Nunkoo had a meeting with the Mr. Francois Guibert, Chief Executive Officer of the Economic Development Board (EDB), leading agency mandated by the Government of Mauritius to drive economic planning and promote the country as an attractive investment and trade destination.

High Commissioner Girish Nunkoo and Mr. Francois Guibert, CEO of the EDB

During the meeting, Mr. Guibert highlighted the core strategies of the EDB for 2019, which are aimed at accelerating established sectors, diversifying investment in high growth sectors and innovating through hi-tech. The apex investment agency is further expected to fulfill its role through outreach initiatives via country branding and increased international presence. H.E. Girish Nunkoo expressed his support to the EDB in their mandate to promote trade and investment opportunities. He further mentioned that the Eastern Southern Africa (ESA) - United Kingdom Economic Partnership Agreement (EPA), which was signed on 31 January 2019, provides for more predictability and certainty to Mauritian operators exporting to the UK in a post- BREXIT scenario. In the context of the visit of Mr. Guibert in London, the High Commission facilitated meetings with potential investors and also coordinated a roundtable briefing with the UK business community, held on 6 February 2019.

 “UK-ESA Agreement –Signature Ceremony held on 31 January 2019”

High Commissioner Girish NUNKOO, signed the UK-ESA (Eastern and Sourthern Africa) Agreement in London, on Thursday 31 January 2019, at the Foreign and Commonwealth Office (FCO) with Honorable George Hollingberry, UK's Minister of State for Trade Policy. In his opening speech, prior to the signing ceremony, Hon. Hollingberry praised the joint efforts over the past two years that have resulted in this partnership agreement.

High Commissioner Girish NUNKOO and Hon. George Hollinberry, UK Minister of State for Trade Policy during the signature ceremony of the UK-ESA Agreement

High Commissioner Girish NUNKOO made an address on behalf of the ESA group (Eastern and Southern Africa) and stated that this new arrangement replicates the effects of the existing Interim Economic Partnership Agreement (IEPA) as a means to ensure the continuity of the trade relations between ESA countries and the UK and will act as a framework document on which to build on. He referred to the built-in clause in the agreement which would allow Mauritius to negotiate for a more comprehensive agreement with the UK in future. He also expressed his satisfaction for having headed the Mauritian delegation and participated in the initial discussions that started on September 6th, 2017 in Johannesburg. Representatives from ESA countries present endorsed the remarks of High Commissioner NUNKOO namely; Madagascar, Seychelles and Zimbabwe.

High Commissioner NUNKOO with ESA representatives

High Commissioner NUNKOO receiving the Certificate of Powers from Hon. Hollingberry

The United Kingdom is one of our main traditional trading partners. In 2017, Mauritian exports to the United Kingdom amounted to some $ 250 million (USD), consisting mainly of clothing, fish preparations and sugar. With the effects of Brexit and the uncertainties that prevail, Mauritius and the ESA countries wanted to reach an agreement that will ensure trade continuity, whatever the outcome of Brexit. The measures contained in the UK-ESA Agreement will come into effect in the event the UK leaves the EU.

The UK-ESA Agreement covers three chapters, namely: trade in products, seafood and development cooperation. It will guarantee preferential access for local products to the UK market, duty free and quota free. It will also preserve the assets of Mauritius in the UK market. It is to be noted that this legal assurance of the continuity of commercial exchanges was warmly welcomed by the Mauritian economic operators.

 “International Security Expo 2018 Olympia, London ~28-29 November 2018 ”

High Commissioner, H.E. Girish Nunkoo, attended the International Security Expo 2018 and the Aviation Security Seminar which was held in Olympia, London, from 28 to 29 November 2018. The theme of the expo was “Evolving Security through Innovation.

High Commissioner Girish Nunkoo at the International Security Expo 2018

The International Security Expo is the international showcase for homeland & commercial security. It is the fastest growing international showcase of security delivering thousands of international buyers and influencers from Government, Critical National Infrastructure, Law Enforcement, Military, Transport & Borders, Cyber Security, Facilities and Public and Private sectors. The UK Department of Transport, in parallel, organised a half-day seminar on 29 November 2018 on aviation security to highlight the security threats to civil aviation, apprise on the UK Aviation Security Strategy and explore avenues for collaboration with partner countries on mitigating aviation security threats.

High Commissioner Girish Nunkoo with the UK Department of Transport Staff and Officials from the High Commission

Group Photo of the Aviation Security Seminar Participants

 “World Travel Market –London, 05-07 November 2018 ”

High Commissioner Girish Nunkoo attended an evening reception organised by the Mauritius Tourism Promotion Agency (MTPA) to mark the official opening of the Mauritius stand at the World Travel Market (WTM) 2018 on 05 November 2017 at Excel Exhibitions and International Convention Centre in London. The WTM is an annual business to business exhibition for travel industry professionals. Suppliers of travel and tourism products showcase the latest developments in the travel industry. The event brings together the largest global industry gathering of destinations, tour operators, hotels, airlines, technology and online travel services under one roof and covers a diverse range of sectors within the travel and tourism industry.

High Commissioner Nunkoo at the World Travel Market

Honourable Anil Kumarsingh GAYAN S.C., Minister of Tourism of Mauritius, and High Commissioner H.E. Girish Nunkoo attended a civic reception in Edinburgh, Scotland, on 06 November 2018 to celebrate the 50th Anniversary of independence of Mauritius. The event was hosted by the Honorary Consul of Mauritius in Scotland, Mr. Naveen Ramdeehul, in partnership with the City of Edinburgh Council and the Lord Provost Frank Ross. The chief guest of the event was Deputy Lord Provost Councillor Joan Griffiths (in the absence of Lord Provost Frank Ross), Chair of the Edinburg Labour Group. She delivered a short speech on the occasion. High Commissioner Nunkoo seized the opportunity of his visit to Scotland to engage discussions with members of the Mauritian Diaspora on the possibility of them investing back in Mauritius. He also visited the Consulate office in Edinburgh. It is to be noted that the Consulate was opened in December 2016 and falls under Mission in London jurisdiction. Discussions were also held with the Honorary Consul on areas of collaboration with Scotland, the deepening of ties with Scotland and how Mauritius can tap onto the Scottish market in the Tourism Sector.

High Commissioner Nunkoo together with Mr. K. Jingree, Deputy High Commissioner engaging discussion with Mr. Ian Nash from Air Mauritius

During the show, Mauritius was given two awards by Selling Travel Magazine, the awards are voted by agents, with Mauritius picking up the gold award for Best Beach Destination, and receiving a commendation award for Best Weddings & Honeymoon destination. The MTPA also collected the gold award at the inaugural International Travel & Tourism Awards presented by WTM.

Hon. A. Gayan, Minister of Tourism at the World Travel Market

 “Celebrations of the 50th Anniversary of the Independence of the Republic of Mauritius in Scotland”

The Mauritius stand was officially opened by the Honourable Anil Kumarsingh GAYAN S.C., Minister of Tourism of Mauritius. This year also the MTPA hosted the stand which comprised 37 exhibitors from the tourism and travel industry in Mauritius. Globally, the United Kingdom is one of the top five spenders on outbound tourism. Outbound travel is increasing steadily in the United Kingdom along with domestic and inbound tourism. According to the Office for National Statistics of UK, residents of the United Kingdom made 70.4 million outbound trips in 2016, which is a 7% increase compared to 2015. It is to be noted that the UK is one of the main tourist markets for Mauritius with 150, 000 arrivals from the UK in 2017.

High Commissioner Nunkoo together with Hon. A. Gayan, Minister of Tourism, Councillor Joan Griffiths and Mr. Naveen Ramdeehul, Honorary Consul of Mauritius in Scotland

High Commissioner Nunkoo with Councillor Joan Griffiths

 “Mauritius High Commission – Confederation of Indian Industry (CII) UK”

On 24 October 2018, the Mauritius High Commission, in collaboration with the Confederation of Indian Industry (CII) in UK, held a Breakfast Meeting to present the investment landscape and the business opportunities in Mauritius. The event regrouped some 10 business leaders, across various sectors with an interest in doing business with Mauritius. During his remarks, H.E Mr. Girish Nunkoo, High Commissioner stated on the progress made by Mauritius since its independence to transform from a mono-crop economy to a diversified and vibrant one. The High Commissioner also highlighted on the key sectors of the economy; the Africa strategy including the development of Special Economic Zones in African countries; the trade agreements under negotiations respectively with India, China and African Continental Free Trade Agreement; and the vision of Mauritius to reach the high-income status. In line with this vision and pursuant to the country’s endeavour to transform into a digital economy, the High Commissioner added that Mauritius will host the World AI Show (https://mauritius.worldaishow.com/) from 28 to 30 November 2018, and which aim to regroup some 400 participants including Ministers in the field of ICT, AI and Blockchain from Singapore, UAE, Estonia, UK, India, China, amongst others. H.E Mr. G. Nunkoo further emphasised ¬on the ongoing fruitful relationship with CII and invited the members present to consider Mauritius as a business destination. Mrs. Lakshmi Kaul, Head & Representative of CII in UK, provided an overview on the role of CII in UK ranging from relationship building, public relations, research, strategy and policy work to creating community networks and building focussed campaigns in view of promoting the interest of India in the UK. In her address, Mrs. Kaul reiterated on the support of CII to collaborate further with the Mauritius High Commission in promoting Mauritius as an investment destination and as platform to Africa with its members

H.E Mr.Girish Nunkoo engaging with Mrs Lakshmi Kaul, Head & Representative-CII UK

H.E Mr.G.Nunkoo addressing the audience

 “Mauritius selected as a Lead Partnering Country for the GEF-UNDP-IMO GloFouling Project –25 October 2018, International Maritime Organisation (IMO), London"

Mauritius has been selected as one of the 12 Lead Partnering Countries on the GEF-UNDP-IMO GloFouling Project which was launched on Thursday 25 October 2018 by the International Maritime Organisation (IMO) at its Headquarters in London. The GloFouling project, a joint initiative by the Global Environment Facility (GEF), the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) and IMO, aims to build capacity in developing countries for implementing the IMO and other relevant guidelines for biofouling management and to catalyse overall reductions in the transboundary introduction of biofouling-mediated invasive aquatic species with additional benefits in the reduction of GHG emissions from global shipping. The selection of Mauritius as a Lead Partnering Country on the project is in line with efforts being undertaken in implementing effective measures to control the introduction of foreign marine species through the management of ballast water from ships. Additionally, participation in this project will support the development of local expertise in Biofouling Management and position Mauritius as a Small Island Developing state (SIDs) which, as a responsible Member State of IMO, is fully committed to the preservation of its marine resources for the sustainable development of its maritime sector. The official launch was attended by representatives from UNDP, GEF, the Intergovernmental Oceanographic Commission of UNESCO (IOC-UNESCO), the World Ocean Council (WOC) and the Lead Partnering Countries. Mauritius was represented at the event by Mr. Arvind Bucktowar, Second Secretary, from the High Commission.

Mr A.Bucktowar, Second Secretary (far left),with the representatives of IMO, GEF, UNDP and the other Lead Partnering Countries at the launching of the GloFouling Project.

 “ANNUAL CONSERVATIVES PARTY CONFERENCE 2018"

H.E. Girish Nunkoo attended the Annual Conference of the Conservatives Party held at the International Convention Centre (ICC) in Birmingham from 30 September to 03 October 2018. The Conservatives Party Annual Conference takes place every autumn and is one of the largest and most high profile political events in Europe. Over 11,000 people, including international delegates, attended the Conference which hosted several keynote speeches, debates, discussions and over 450 fringe events, 100 stands, an exhibition and many opportunities to network and share ideas. The theme for this year’s conference was ‘Opportunity for the future’ and, as expected, discussions were dominated by the fast-approaching Brexit deadline. Important policy announcements on Economic/fiscal policy, Immigration, Housing and the Health sector were also made during the conference. The event also enabled the participants to gain a better understanding of ‘Global Britain’, the United Kingdom’s post-Brexit foreign policy strategic plan. High Commissioner Nunkoo availed of the opportunity to meet with the Foreign Secretary, The Rt. Hon. Jeremy Hunt MP, and network with other prominent MPs and representatives of the business community.

High Commissioner Nunkoo and Foreign Secretary the Rt Hon Jeremy Hunt MP

Attorney General Mr Jerrrey addressing Conference

Main Conference Hall

Fringe meeting on Global Britain hosted by CAPX

 “Meeting with H.E. Mr Philip Parham CMG – UK Envoy to the Commonwealth Tuesday 04 September 2018"

H.E. Mr Philip Parham CMG, the UK’s newly appointed Envoy to the Commonwealth, called on High Commissioner G. Nunkoo on Tuesday 04 September 2018 at the seat of the High Commission in London. High Commissioner G.Nunkoo, Representative of Mauritius to the Commonwealth, welcomed H.E. Mr Parham in his new role as the UK’s envoy to the Commonwealth and reaffirmed the support of Mauritius and of the High Commission to the UK as Chair-in-Office of the Commonwealth for the next two years. Discussions centred on the swift implementation of decisions taken at the last Commonwealth Heads of Government Meeting (CHOGM) held in London in April 2018. The preparations for the forthcoming Commonwealth Foreign Affairs Ministers Meeting (CFAMM) were also discussed. In that respect and with reference to the recent visit in July 2018 of the Commonwealth Secretary General to Mauritius, High Commissioner Nunkoo expanded on the progress made by Mauritius since April 2018, notably in respect of the Blue Charter, more specifically on Coral Reef Restoration and the Commonwealth Clean Oceans Alliance. The High Commissioner and the UK’s Envoy also exchanged views on the Cyber Declaration on enhancing cyber security as well as the Connectivity for Trade Agenda. Regarding the Commonwealth Climate Finance Access Hub (based in Mauritius since October 2016), High Commissioner Nunkoo informed that Mauritius, as host, is providing the necessary facilities towards ensuring effective operations and is also looking forward to the support of the Commonwealth Secretariat and the UK to ensure that the Hub achieves its long-term objectives. In that regard, H.E. Mr Parham informed that the UK would be contributing £ 0.5 million towards the budget of the Hub.

 “Houses of Parliament – Westminster Africa Business Group – Networking with Harriett Baldwin MP, UK Minister of State for Africa "

H.E Mr Girish Nunkoo, High Commissioner participated in the Annual Spring Reception of the Westminster Africa Business Group held on 10 September 2018 at the Houses of Parliament. The guest speaker at the event was Ms Harriett Baldwin MP, Minister of State for Africa at the UK Foreign and Commonwealth Office and Minister of State at the UK Department for International Development. Established in 1947, the Westminster Africa Business Group brings together politicians and businesses around promoting the interests of the UK and Africa. It aims to appeal directly to companies and individuals with interests in the commercial & political sectors within Africa. As such, membership of the Group comprises of a large number of UK businesses currently operating in or with an interest in doing business on the African continent. The event brought together a mix of the political, diplomatic, and business communities. It provided a good opportunity for the High Commissioner to engage with the UK Minister of State for Africa as well as senior business contacts in view of promoting Mauritius as a platform for doing business and investing in the African continent, as part of the Government’s Africa Strategy.

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 “Meeting with H.E. Mr Philip Parham CMG – UK Envoy to the Commonwealth Tuesday 04 September 2018"

H.E. Mr Philip Parham CMG, the UK’s newly appointed Envoy to the Commonwealth, called on High Commissioner G. Nunkoo on Tuesday 04 September 2018 at the seat of the High Commission in London. High Commissioner G.Nunkoo, Representative of Mauritius to the Commonwealth, welcomed H.E. Mr Parham in his new role as the UK’s envoy to the Commonwealth and reaffirmed the support of Mauritius and of the High Commission to the UK as Chair-in-Office of the Commonwealth for the next two years. Discussions centred on the swift implementation of decisions taken at the last Commonwealth Heads of Government Meeting (CHOGM) held in London in April 2018. The preparations for the forthcoming Commonwealth Foreign Affairs Ministers Meeting (CFAMM) were also discussed. In that respect and with reference to the recent visit in July 2018 of the Commonwealth Secretary General to Mauritius, High Commissioner Nunkoo expanded on the progress made by Mauritius since April 2018, notably in respect of the Blue Charter, more specifically on Coral Reef Restoration and the Commonwealth Clean Oceans Alliance. The High Commissioner and the UK’s Envoy also exchanged views on the Cyber Declaration on enhancing cyber security as well as the Connectivity for Trade Agenda. Regarding the Commonwealth Climate Finance Access Hub (based in Mauritius since October 2016), High Commissioner Nunkoo informed that Mauritius, as host, is providing the necessary facilities towards ensuring effective operations and is also looking forward to the support of the Commonwealth Secretariat and the UK to ensure that the Hub achieves its long-term objectives. In that regard, H.E. Mr Parham informed that the UK would be contributing £ 0.5 million towards the budget of the Hub.

Parham courtesy call book signing.

 Parham courtesy call handshake.

  Hon. Ashit Kumar Gungah,delivering his keynote address at the Africa Breakfast Roundable, hosted by Turkish Airlines.

 “Trade and Export Promotion in London & Manchester ~ 22 to 27 July 2018"

Hon. Ashit Kumar Gungah, Minister of Industry, Commerce and Consumer Protection led a delegation comprising representatives of the Economic Development Board (EDB) and operators from the textile and apparel industry for a Trade & Investment Promotion to London & Manchester from 22 to 27 July 2018. The delegation participated in Pure London, UK’s leading fashion trade show held from 22 to 24 July 2018, and whereby the Mauritian companies present were able to showcase their products. Representatives from the High Commission attended the country session “Mauritius – Products Made with Care” in the presence of the Hon. Minister. On 26 July, EDB Mauritius, in collaboration with the Greater Manchester Chamber of Commerce and with the assistance of the High Commission, organized a ‘Doing Business in Mauritius’ seminar in Manchester, with the objective to create awareness on Mauritius as a competitive business destination. The event was followed by a Buyers Sellers Meeting. Some key meetings for the Hon. Minister and EDB representatives were held respectively with the Institute of Exports & International Trade, the Textile department of the University of Manchester, the Manchester Metropolitan University and with private sector operators in the field of manufacturing and financial services. The Hon. Minister also participated as keynote speaker at a Private Africa Breakfast Roundtable hosted by Turkish Airlines on 23 July 2018.

 

Hon. Ashit Kumar Gungah, Minister of Industry, Commerce and Consumer Protection at Pure London.

 Attendees at the Mauritius Country Session at Pure London.

  Hon. Ashit Kumar Gungah,delivering his keynote address at the Africa Breakfast Roundable, hosted by Turkish Airlines.

 “Signing of Jeddah Amendment to the Djibouti Code of Conduct – 26 July 2018, International Maritime Organisation (IMO), London ”

H.E. Mr. Girish Nunkoo, High Commissioner of Mauritius in the United Kingdom and Permanent Representative of Mauritius to the International Maritime Organisation (IMO), signed the Jeddah Amendment to the Djibouti Code of Conduct on Thursday 26 July 2018 at the IMO Headquarters in London in the presence of H.E. Mr Kitack Lim, Secretary General of the IMO. H.E. Mr. Girish Nunkoo and H.E. Mr. Kitack Lim discussed existing and future cooperation between Mauritius and the IMO. The High Commissioner highlighted the importance for Mauritius, as an ocean state, of close collaboration with the IMO, notably in the areas of maritime security and safety. In that regard, the signature of the Jeddah Amendment to the Djibouti Code of Conduct was an important step forward. With reference to the Maritime Security Conference held in Mauritius in April 2018, H.E. Mr. Girish Nunkoo also expanded on the leadership of the country, as Chair of the Indian Ocean Commission (IOC) and of the Contact Group on Piracy off the Coast of Somalia (CGPCS), in the field of maritime security in the Indian Ocean. H.E. Mr Kitack Lim noted with satisfaction that Mauritius was playing an increasingly important role in the region in the maritime domain. He assured of the continued assistance and collaboration of the IMO to enhance the capabilities of the competent Mauritian authorities towards ensuring effective oceanic management and governance. Possibilities for further collaboration in the area of capacity building and training in the legal and technical fields of the maritime domain were discussed. The Jeddah Amendment to the Djibouti Code of Conduct (DCoC) was adopted in 2017 and concerns the repression of Piracy and Armed Robbery against Ships and Illicit Maritime Activity in the Western Indian Ocean and the Gulf of Aden. It essentially broadens the ambit of the initial Djibouti Code of Conduct, adopted in January 2009 and which focused mainly on piracy and armed robbery at sea, to include wider maritime security and safety issues, such as human and illicit substance trafficking and Illegal, Unreported and Unregulated (IUU) fishing, as a basis for sustainable development of the maritime sector and of the ocean economy. Mauritius becomes the 15th country to sign the Jeddah Amendment to the Djibouti Code of Conduct.

 “Presentation of Credentials of His Excellency Mr. Girish Nunkoo to Norway”

On 21 June 2018, H.E. Mr. Girish Nunkoo presented his Credentials to His Majesty King Harald V of Norway, as the new non-resident Ambassador of the Republic of Mauritius to Norway, during an official ceremony held at the Royal Palace in Oslo. During a private meeting after the presentation of Credentials ceremony, the Ambassador conveyed the sincere and cordial greetings of the Ag. President, the Prime Minister, the Government and the people of the Republic of Mauritius to the King of Norway and recalled the cordial long standing diplomatic relations between the two countries. H.E. Mr. Girish Nunkoo briefed the Norwegian King about the latest developments in Mauritius and also exchanged views on the strengthening of the bilateral relations between Mauritius and Norway. They also discussed current issues of international affairs underlining the focus of both countries on the development of the blue economy and the issue of plastic pollution which is becoming alarming in our oceans and waterways.

 H.E. Mr. G. Nunkoo presenting his Credentials to His Majesty King Harald V during the Solemn Audience

 “Meeting with the Oslo Chamber of Commerce”

On 21 June 2018, H.E. Mr. Girish Nunkoo, met with Mr. Rune Rolfsen, Chief Executive Officer and Mrs Astri S. Platou, External Affairs Director at the Oslo Chamber of Commerce. During the meeting, Ambassador Girish Nunkoo expressed the wish for the strengthening of ties with Norway particularly through bilateral trade and investment and proposed that opportunities be explored for business to business collaboration between Mauritian and Norwegian companies. He indicated that Mauritius could be an ideal springboard for Norwegian businesses to invest across Africa as the country provided a platform which combined the best level of security to global investors. He also requested the possibility for potential collaboration with Norwegian businesses in the field of the blue economy. Ambassador Nunkoo mentioned that Mauritius was paving its way to achieve high-income status by 2023 and in this respect, there was a need to forge deeper economic ties with countries like Norway.

 “Courtesy Call on the Norwegian Minister for International Development”

On 22 June 2018, Ambassador Girish Nunkoo paid a courtesy call on Honourable Nikolai Astrup, Minister for International Development of Norway, in Oslo. The Hon. Minister informed about the initiative of the Norwegian government in tackling the problem of plastic pollution in Norwegian waters. He also pointed out that around two-thirds of Norwegian exports came from the fishing sector and as a result Norway has acquired a lot of experience in the field of marine exploitation, which is being done in a sustainable manner. Ambassador Girish Nunkoo highlighted the commonalities between both countries being ocean states and referred to the nexus between our ocean and the tourism industry, which is dependent upon clean beaches and pristine lagoons. He expressed the wish for a close collaboration between Mauritius and Norway in the field of the blue economy.

 Ambassador G. Nunkoo meeting with the Minister for International Development

 “Meeting between High Commissioner H.E. Girish Nunkoo and the Rt Hon Patricia Scotland QC, Commonwealth Secretary General, 15 June 2018”

In preparation for the upcoming official vist the Commonwealth Secretary General from 1 to 3 July 2018 to Mauritus of, H.E. Girish Nunkoo had a working meeting with the Rt Hon Patricia Scotland QC on 15 June 2018. The meeting was an opportunity for the Secretary General to express her satisfaction at paying her first official visit to Mauritus and her pleasure at meeting the Hon Pravind K. Jugnauth, Prime Minister and several other Mauritian dignitaries. She exchanged views on the intiatives of the Commonwealth to assist member states in achieving the Sustainable Development Goals, the work undertaken to encourage intra-Commonwealth trade, as well the Commonwealth’s leading advocacy role in tackling climate change. The Rt Hon Patricia Scotland QC is looking forward to present those intiatives to all concerned parties in Mauritius and learn from Mauritius’ challenges and see how the Commonwelath could assist. During her visit the Secretary General intends to have a working meeting with resident High Commissioners in Mauritius and will visit one of the flagship projects of the Commonwealth, the Climate Finance Access Hub which is hosted in Mauritius.

 Meeting with Secretary General_Rt Hon Patricia Scotland

 “Courtesy Call by H.E. Mr Keith Allan, British High Commissioner in Mauritius”

H.E. Mr Keith Allan, British High Commissioner to Mauritius paid a courtesy call on H.E. Mr Girish Nunkoo at the High Commission in London on 22 May 2018.

The meeting took place in a cordial and friendly atmosphere. The two High Commissioners exchanged views on ongoing bilateral issues and their efforts to reinforce cooperation between the two countries.

 “NATIONAL DAY RECEPTION 2018”

H.E. Girish Nunkoo hosted a National Day Reception on 15 March 2018 in London. The event brought together around 200 guests comprising of members of the London-based diplomatic community, the Commonwealth Secretary General and key staff of the Secretariat and other Commonwealth organisations, other London-based Multilateral organisations, representatives of key British government Ministries (Foreign & Commonwealth Office, Home Office, Diplomatic Police, Department of International Trade), eminent judges, selected members of the House of Lords, prominent members of the Mauritian diaspora in the UK, key staff of the Air Mauritius London Office and the representatives of MTPA in London. The Guest of Honour for the event was Mr Alistair Harrison, Marshall of the Diplomatic Corps and Representative of the Royal family to the Diplomatic community.

In his speech, the High Commissioner spoke of the historic relations between Mauritius and the United Kingdom and the active role played by Mauritius within the Commonwealth. He also highlighted the enormous progress achieved by Mauritius over the last 50 years and presented the challenges that lie ahead for the country to move to the next stage of its development, to which the Mauritian diaspora in the UK was invited to bring its contribution.

The evening also included a raffle draw for two return air tickets offered by Air Mauritius to promote the Mauritius tourist destination as well as a Sega performance by a professional dance troupe to showcase the cultural heritage of Mauritius.

 “Introductory Breakfast Meeting with new Minister for Africa, Hariett Baldwin, 01 March 2018”

Harriett Baldwin MP was appointed as Minister of State for Africa at the Foreign and Commonwealth Office and Minister of State at the Department for International Development on 9 January 2018.

It is in this context that the new Minister hosted an introductory breakfast meeting to discuss, among others, the Commonwealth Heads of Government Meeting along with African High Commissioners.

The meeting was an opportunity for the High Commissioner, H.E. Girish NUNKOO, to make an intervention to highlight that the themes on which CHOGM 2018 will focus were of high interest to Mauritius and gave the assurance of the collaboration of Mauritius in the coming years to develop further issues of substance in a consensual manner in keeping the Commonwealth values to which we remain committed.

He also stressed on the need to increase Intra-Commonwealth Trade, which remains as crucial as the need to tackle poverty, climate change and terrorism.

 “Reception for the Commonwealth Diaspora - Buckingham Palace, 14th February 2018”

The Queen, as Head of the Commonwealth, hosted a reception at Buckingham Palace to celebrate the achievements of the Commonwealth Diaspora community, to which the High Commissioner His Excellency Girish Nunkoo was invited.

The reception offered an opportunity to recognise people of Commonwealth heritage who have made a positive contribution to business, community and culture in the United Kingdom.

The Prince of Wales, The Duchess of Cornwall and The Duchess of Gloucester, also attended the reception, which provided the opportunity to meet some the incredible people from across the Commonwealth, who have been successful in areas such as business, politics, the arts, sport, diplomacy, religion, charities, youth and community groups.

 “The Queen’s Commonwealth Trust Reception 2017 - Buckingham Palace, 17th October 2017”

On 17 October 2017, the High Commissioner His Excellency Girish Nunkoo attended a reception to mark the launch of The Queen’s Commonwealth Trust at Buckingham Palace hosted by Her Majesty The Queen Elizabeth II and HRH Prince Henry of Wales.

The Queen’s Commonwealth has HRH Prince Henry of Wales as president and celebrates The Queen’s belief in young people as a force for good. Focusing on sport, education, health and environment, The Trust's ambition is to enable young people to build a better future for all.

It will incorporate the Diamond Jubilee Trust (which has given away £120 million to charity) and its aim will be to support young people (aged 13-35) who have or are starting charities within their communities.

 “Meeting with Dr. Arjoon Suddhoo - 27 February 2018”

Dr. Arjoon Suddhoo, Executive Director of the Mauritius Research Council (MRC) and Chairman of the Board of Air Mauritius Ltd, called on H.E. Girish Nunkoo, High Commissioner of Mauritius in the United Kingdom, on 27 February 2018 at the seat of the High Commission in London.

Dr. Suddhoo was in London in his capacity as Executive Director of the MRC for official meetings with Innovate UK and the UK Department for Business, Energy & Industrial Strategy. The purpose of his mission was to look into possibilities of enhancing bilateral cooperation between the MRC and the above-mentioned UK institutions in the fields of research and innovation.

Dr Sudhoo briefed the High Commissioner on the fruitful discussions and possibilities for cooperation identified from his meetings in London, notably with Innovate UK, the MRC’s corresponding agency in the UK. H.E. Girish Nunkoo assured him of the continued support of the High Commission in pursuing and following up on avenues of cooperation in the aforementioned areas.

The existing good working relationship between the High Commission and Air Mauritius Ltd was put on record and the possibility of collaborating more closely to promote the Mauritius destination, notably among the Corporate and the business community, was discussed.

 “Meeting with Dr. Nick Hardman-Mountford, Head of Oceans and Natural Resources at Commonwealth Secretariat”

On 14 February 2018 Dr. Nick Hardman-Mountford, the new Head of Oceans and Natural Resources and Ms. Rosemarie Cadogan, International Lawyer on Natural Resource Governance, both working at the Oceans and Natural Resources Directorate of the Commonwealth Secretariat, called on High Commissioner H.E. Girish Nunkoo.

They exchanged views on the importance of the ocean economy to the Commonwealth States particularly for the Small States as they focus on the implementation of the Sustainable Development Goals. The need for capacity building through sharing of experiences and expertise, in the field of the ocean economy among the members of the Commonwealth was stressed upon.

In this regard, the upcoming CHOGM 2018 to be held in London in April 2018 was considered very timely and opportune for the Commonwealth to chart a roadmap to help the member states develop their ocean economy.

 “Mission of the SADC Sugar Producers Consultative Forum in London – 29 January to 02 February 2018”

A delegation of the SADC Sugar Producers Consultative Forum (SADC SPCF) undertook a mission in London from 29 January to 02 February 2018. The High Commission actively participated in the mission as representative of the Government of Mauritius and of the Mauritian Sugar Industry.

The main objective of the mission was to engage with the UK policy makers and policy advocates on the critical role of the sugar industry in SADC countries and the challenges it faces with particular reference to the EU and UK markets. The mission also enabled the delegation to present a call for action by the UK in favour of ensuring the sustainability and economic viability of sugar exports from the SADC countries.

During the course of the mission, the delegation met with the newly appointed Minister of State for Africa, UK Members of Parliament, Members of the House of Lords, Parliamentary Select Committees, All-Party Parliamentary Groups (APPGs) for Africa; Food for Development and Trade out of Poverty as well as officials from the Foreign and Commonwealth Office, the Department for International Development and the Department for International Trade. Meetings were also held with the Commonwealth Secretariat and the Commonwealth Enterprise and Investment Council (CWEIC). The delegation also engaged with other stakeholders of the British sugar sector, notably the National Farmers Union (NFU), Associated British Sugar and the Fairtrade Foundation.

The SADC SPCF regroups the Sugar Industries of the SADC region of which the Mauritius Sugar Syndicate is a member. Since January 2018, Dr Mike Matsebula (ex-CEO of the Swaziland Sugar Association) has been appointed as consultant in view of ensuring that the interests of SADC sugar producers are best represented in the UK, particularly in the context of Brexit.

 “Meeting with Mr Ian Nash, Regional Manager (UK and Ireland) of Air Mauritius”

Mr Ian Nash, Regional Manager (UK and Ireland) of Air Mauritius called on H.E. Girish Nunkoo, High Commissioner on 7 February 2018, to exchange views on issues of cooperation between the National Carrier and the High Commission.

The two sides discussed a wide range of issues including promotion of Mauritius in the UK and Ireland, the upcoming CHOGM to be held in London from 16 to 20 April 2018, the opportunities arising from corporate travellers and difficulties being encountered by Mauritian passengers arriving at Heathrow airport.

“COMMONWEALTH CLIMATE FINANCE ACCESS HUB (CCFAH) Meeting with the Climate Change Unit of the Commonwelath Secretariat”

In preparation for the the 2nd Steering Committee of the CCFAH due to be held on 20 February 2018 in Mauritus, Mission held a meeting with Ms Katherine Kennedy, Interim Head of the Climate Change Unit at the Commonwealth Secretariat and Mr Ahmed Ali, Research Officer at the same unit, on 18 January 2018 at the High Commission.

In recalling that October 2017 marked the completion of the first year of operations of the CCFAH, the High Commissioner H. E. Girish Nunkoo was prompt to reassert the importance of the Hub in assisting SIDs and LDCs, to access funding to combat the adverse effects of climate change, through the strengthening of relevant institutions and the unlocking of international climate finance.

As such the High Commissioner highlighted the crucial role of the Steering Committee of the Hub in providing policy oversight and strategic guidance to the CCFAH operations.

The High Commissioner noted with satisfaction that demand for services of the CCFAH had been high since the start of the operations of the Hub. There are already 7 national advisors in place across the Commonwealth, with the 2 more requests being processed at an advance stage.

The meeting was also an occasion for the Secretariat to brief the High Commission on the Commonwealth’s other initiative and collaborations in fighting climate change with the Green Climate Fund (GCF) for example and its intention to publish a Climate Change Strategy paper, shortly.

 “Official visit of the President of the Republic – 28-30 January 2018”

Her Excellency Mrs Ameenah Gurib-Fakim, G.C.S.K, C.S.K., PHd., DSc, President of the Republic of Mauritius was on official visit in London from 28 to 30 January 2018, where she was invited by the Overseas Development Institute (ODI) to give a Keynote speech on “Protecting and Empowering Women at the bottom of the Labour Market” on 29 January 2018.

The Overseas Development Institute (ODI) is a leading independent think tank on international development and humanitarian issues. The audience was predominantly made up of policy-makers, NGOs and academics. The High Commissioner H.E. Girish Nunkoo and the diplomatic staff, who were actively involved in the organisation of the whole visit, were also present.

On 30 January 2018, H.E. the President, accompanied by H.E. Girish Nunkoo, was the main guest in a lunch reception hosted by HRH the Prince of Wales at Clarence House, jointly organised by Global Crop Diversity Trust; an international non-profit organization which works to preserve crop diversity in order to protect global food security, based in Bonn, under the patronage of His Royal Highness The Prince of Wales.

H.E. the President also addressed an audience at a follow-up conversation and roundtable discussion, convened by Crop Trust on “Getting Together for the Future of Food”, immediately after the lunch. The High Commissioner H.E. Girish Nunkoo keenly participated.

H.E. the President also had a couple of bilateral meetings at the High Commission, on the subjects of scientific research and scientific innovation in Africa.

Throughout her visit Her Excellency also had the opportunity to discuss with the High Commissioner and the staff of the High Commission on the work of the Mission and the important events on its calendar in the coming months, such as the Commonwealth Heads of Government Meeting scheduled in April 2018 in London.

 “World Travel Market 2017– London, 06 to 08 October 2017”

The High Commission participated in the official opening of the Mauritius stand at the World Travel Market 2017 on 06 November 2017 at ExCel Exhibitions and International Convention Centre in London.

The World Travel Market, which was held from 06 to 08 November 2017, is one of the leading global events for the travel industry and a key business-to-business exhibition for the worldwide travel and tourism sector. More than 50,000 senior travel industry professionals, government ministers and international press attend the event in November each year to network, negotiate deals and discover the latest industry opinions and trends at WTM London, now in its 37th year.

The Mauritius stand was officially opened in the presence of the Honourable Anil Kumarsingh GAYAN S.C., Minister of Tourism of Mauritius, and H.E. Girish Nunkoo, High Commissioner of Mauritius in London. The Mauritius Tourism Promotion Agency (MTPA) hosted the stand which comprised of more than 35 exhibitors from the tourism and travel industry in Mauritius.

With a population of 65.6 million, the United Kingdom is the fourth largest source market for tourism in the world. UK residents made more than 70 million visits abroad in 2016 representing an increase of 8% compared to 2015. The UK is also one of the main tourist markets for Mauritius with over 170,000 arrivals forecasted for the year 2017.

 “Official visit to Egypt by High Commissioner Girish Nunkoo”

High Commissioner Girish Nunkoo undertook an official visit to Egypt from 02 to 05 November 2017 upon the invitation of the Egyptian Ministry of Transport (Maritime Sector). The visit was organised in the wider context of Egypt’s candidature for the International Maritime Organisation (IMO) Assembly elections (Category C) and was extended to several London-based High Commissioners in their capacity as Permanent Representatives of their respective countries to the IMO. The main objective was to showcase Egypt’s expertise and efforts in the maritime domain, notably in the fields of training and education and port infrastructure development. The highlights were the visits to The Arab Academy for Science, Technology and Maritime Transport and to the Alexandria Port Authority.

The Arab Academy for Science, Technology and Maritime Transport (AASTMT) was established in Alexandria by the League of Arab States in 1970 as a Regional Institute for Maritime Transport. Funded partly by the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) and the member states of the League of Arab states, it has grown over the years in its role as an institution specialized in research and development as well as training in the field of maritime transport.

The Alexandria Port Authority manages the port of Alexandria, Egypt’s oldest and largest seaport. Around 60% of Egypt foreign trade passes through this port whose capacity is estimated to be 75% of the total capacity of Egypt's ports on the Mediterranean Sea handling over 55% of the total number of ships incoming to the Egyptian ports in the Mediterranean. The strategic importance of Alexandria and its port has subsided throughout history and is today evermore central in the development of Egypt’s shipping industry and its position as a strategic player in the global maritime domain.

 “High Level delegation led by Financial Secretary in London – 04 to 09 October 2017”

A high-level delegation led by Mr. Dev Manraj, the Financial Secretary, and comprising of, Dr. Navin Beekarry, Director General of the Independent Commission Against Corruption (ICAC) and Mr Harvesh Seegolam, CEO of the Financial Services Commission (FSC), was on official mission in London from 04 to 09 October 2017. The High Commission was part of the delegation which held meetings with public-sector and industry stakeholders in the United Kingdom, notably the Foreign and Commonwealth Office (FCO), the House of Lords, the Commonwealth Enterprise and Investment Council (CWEIC) and the London Business School.

The main objective of the mission was to promote the Mauritius International Financial Centre in the context of our Africa Strategy and the establishment of Special Economic Zones in Ghana, Madagascar, Senegal, Gabon and Côte d’Ivoire. The comparative advantages of using Mauritius as an investment corridor between the United Kingdom and the African continent was presented to the various interlocutors.

The delegation also engaged with regulatory authorities, notably the Financial Conduct Authority (FCA), the Serious Fraud Office, the UK National Crime Agency and the Crown Prosecution Office (CPS) in order to examine and draw lessons from the British model and experience in combatting financial crime. The Government of Mauritius is looking into ways to not only modernise and strengthen the financial services sector but also transform Mauritius into a model in the fight against financial crime in the region. The setting up of a Financial Crime Commission will go a long way in achieving this objective; the technical assistance of the United Kingdom is being sought to this end.

 “Official visit of the President of the Republic – 18 to 20 October 2017”

Her Excellency Mrs Ameenah Gurib-Fakim, G.C.S.K, C.S.K., PHd., DSc, President of the Republic of Mauritius was on official visit in London from 18 to 20 October 2017, where she was invited by Chatham House to speak on the topic of “Technology and Development in Africa: Innovation for Sustainable Growth” on 18 October 2017. Chatham House, home of the Royal Institute of International Affairs, is one of the foremost global think-tanks and centre for research, analysis and discussion of international affairs. The audience was comprised of policy-makers, representatives of the business community, civil society, academia and experts in the field of technology and development, as well as the High Commissioner H.E. Girish Nunkoo, and the diplomatic staff of the High Commission.

On 19 October 2017, Her Excellency the President of the Republic attended the 50th Anniversary Dinner of the University of Surrey at the invitation of Professor Max Lu, President and Vice-Chancellor of the University. The dinner was hosted by His Royal Highness The Duke of Kent at Buckingham Palace and also commemorated the latter’s 40th anniversary as Chancellor of the University of Surrey.

Her Excellency the President of the Republic also met Professor Robin Grimes, Chief Scientific Adviser at the Foreign and Commonwealth Office (FCO) on 19 October 2017. Prof Grimes works closely both with the cross-government community of Chief Scientific Advisers and the wider UK and international academic science community. The meeting, which took place at the High Commission, was an opportunity to exchange views on mutual interests in the scientific domain and discuss possible areas of cooperation.

 “VISIT OF THE HONOURABLE PRAVIND KUMAR JUGNAUTH TO THE MAURITIUS HIGH COMMISSION IN LONDON”

The Honourable Pravind Kumar Jugnauth, Prime Minister, Minister of Home Affairs, External Communications and National Development Unit & Minister of Finance and Economic Development of the Republic of Mauritius visited the Mauritius High Commission on 25 September 2017 during a transit in London on his way back from attending the 72nd session of the United Nations General Assembly in New York.

The Hon Prime Minister was accompanied by his close advisers and took the opportunity of being in London to hold meetings at the High Commission.

It was also an occasion for the Hon Prime Minister to meet the staff of the High Commission and sign the Visitors Book for his first visit in his capacity as Prime Minister of Mauritius.

 “Presentation of Letter of Credence to Ireland”

The High Commissioner presented his credentials to Michael D Higgins, President of Ireland on 15 June 2017 at Áras an Uachtaráin, the official residence of the President.

Mauritius established diplomatic relations with Ireland in August 2000 and it is the Embassy in London, which is accredited to Ireland.

The Ambassador offered the warm greetings of the President, the Prime Minister, the Government as well as the people of Mauritius whilst presenting his Letter of Credence and Letter of Recall of his predecessor to the President. Also present was Mr Joe McHugh T.D., Government Chief Whip and Minister of State with responsibility for Gaeilge, Gaeltacht and the Islands, Mr Conor Ó Raghallaigh, Deputy Secretary-General to the President, Colonel Michael Kiernan, Aide de Comp to the President and Mr. Eoin O’Leary, Assistant Secretary, Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade.

Following the ceremony the Ambassador had a private conversation with The President and his aides.

Before leaving the President’s residence the Ambassador was requested to do an Inspect the Guard of Honour while a band played the Mauritian national anthem.

During his visit, the High Commissioner also had the opportunity to have a number of meetings to discuss bilateral issues of interest, with the relevant authorities in Ireland, with the aim of reinforcing existing sectors and also to explore new avenues of cooperation.

On the bilateral level, although there exist exchanges between Mauritus and Ireland in sectors such as tourism and trade, there is real potential to enhance the cooperation between our two countries in these two sectors and also to tap other sectors such as the Financial Services, Pharmaceuticals, ICT, Agro-Industry, the Ocean economy and Cultural exchanges.

 “Participation of Mauritian Textile Manufacturers at Fashion SVP in London”

High Commissioner Mr. GirishNunkoo and staff of the High Commission visited the stands of 13 Mauritian textile enterprises at the Fashion SVP at the Olympia Exhibition Centre in London on 27 and 28 June 2017.

The High Commissioner exchanged views with Mr Buzz Carter, Event Director at SVP and with the representatives of the participating Mauritian textile companies on how to promote the products of the Mauritian textile industry in the UK.

Enterprise Mauritius, the National Export Promoting Agency, organised the participation of the Mauritian textile enterprises in the Fashion SVP. The Mauritian apparel manufacturers displayed their latest collections at the Fashion SVP from 27 to 28 June 2017.

The 13 textile enterprises showcased their main products ranging from T-shirts & Polo Shirts, Shirts, Jersey, Denim, Knitwear (Pullover & Cardigan), Lingerie and Swimwear, and Woven.

Visitors at the Fashion SVP discovered that the Mauritian manufacturers have the capability to supply a wide range of textile products at varying price points with a focus on quality.

 “Bilateral Meetings at the High Commission on 9 June 2017”

(i) With H.E. Ms Karen-Mae Hill, High Commissioner of Antigua and Barbuda in London

Her Excellency Ms Karen-Mae Hill, High Commissioner of Antigua and Barbuda in London called on His Excellency Mr. Girish Nunkoo to discuss issues of bilateral cooperation between Mauritius and Antigua and Barbuda.

The High Commissioners explored the possibility of cooperation and sharing of experiences/expertise regarding the development of ocean economy, in the field of education, and on issues of relevance to Small States. They also briefly exchanged view on matters regarding the International Maritime Organization and Commonwealth.

(ii) With Mr. Hassan Shifau, Deputy Ambassador of the Embassy of Maldives in London

Deputy Ambassador Mr. Hassan Shifau of the Embassy of Maldives in London called on His Excellency Mr. Girish Nunkoo to exchange views on issues of common interest including cooperation on matters of mutual importance at multilateral levels”.

 Mauritius International Financial Centre (IFC) Business Meet in London – 5 May 2017

H.E. High Commissioner Girish Nunkoo made the opening speech at the Mauritius IFC Business Meet on 5 May 2017 at the Sofitel London St James Hotel in London.

The Business Meet was organised by the Financial Services Promotion Agency (FSPA) as the dedicated institution of the Government of Mauritius to promote and develop the Mauritius IFC, to showcase and reinforce the image of Mauritius as the investment hub for Africa and FINTECH related activities

In his speech H.E Mr. G. Nunkoo stated: “As financial centres, London and Mauritius have a lot in common and I am certain that by developing collaboration models, we can create, through the relevant institutions, opportunities for all … Mauritius has the requisites to be used and act as a platform for investments into Africa and other emerging markets”.

The Business Meet was attended by more than 100 highly targeted UK based operators in the fields of investment banking, asset and fund management, wealth management, family offices, legal services and Fintech amongst others and featured two focussed panel discussions themed, “Mauritius-Access Centre of Choice for Africa And Other Emerging Market” and “Exploring Regional Fintech opportunities in Africa”, respectively.

 Twinning of Grand Port District Council and Spelthorne Borough Council

His Excellency Girish Nunkoo, High Commissioner celebrated the anniversary of the twinning of Grand Port District Council and Spelthorne Borough Council along with Mr. Shyam Teeluck, Chief Executive and Mr Nirmal Domah, Chairperson of Grand Port by participating in a Services Symposium on Waste and the Environment, Economic Development organised by the Spelthorne Borough Council on 17 May 2017.

In his address to the Spelthorne Borough Council and team, the High Commissioner highlighted the historical importance of the District of Grand Port and the source of our cultural heritage. He also depicted a vivid picture of the sceneries of the district of Grand Port and its touristic attractions.

The following topics were discussed during the Symposium:

- Waste and the Environment

- Economic Development

- The Role of the Councillor

Both Councils aim at sharing of experiences and encourage programmes in the field of education, business, culture, tourism, among others.

 His Excellency Mr Girish Nunkoo presents his Letter of Credence to Denmark

H.E. Mr Girish Nunkoo presented his Letter of Credence to Her Majesty The Queen Margrethe II, accrediting him as Ambassador Extraordinary and Plenipotentiary of the Republic of Mauritius to the Kingdom of Denmark with residence in London on 21 April 2017.

H.E. Mr Girish Nunkoo and his spouse were received by the Lord Chamberlain at Her Majesty’s Palace. H.E Mr Girish Nunkoo officially presented the Letter of Recall of his predecessor and his Letter of Credence to Her Majesty The Queen during a private audience with the latter.

The Ambassador presented the greetings of the President, the Prime Minister, the Government and people of Mauritius to Her Majesty The Queen. The audience with the Queen was very cordial and reflected the friendly relations between Mauritius and Denmark.

The Ambassador expressed the interest of the Government of Mauritius to enhance its cooperation with Denmark both at bilateral and multilateral levels, based on our common values and principles of democracy, good governance and the rule of law. He referred to the efforts being deployed by Government to implement its economic Vision 2030 and invited Denmark to partner us through sharing of their rich experiences in the field of green economy, renewable energy, marine technology, small and medium enterprises (SMEs), amongst others. Her Majesty The Queen showed a keen interest to know about Mauritius and its development initiatives.

H.E Ambassador Nunkoo also held a number of bilateral meetings with the Danish authorities and our Honorary Consul in Denmark to review the state of cooperation between the two countries and explore further possibilities of cooperation. The Danish authorities referred to the number one ranking of Mauritius in the World Bank’s Ease of Doing Business Index in Africa. In this regard, the High Commissioner seized the opportunity to invite Denmark to take advantage of the investment opportunities in Mauritius including real estate and property development, ocean economy, financial services, amongst others.

Diplomatic relations between the Republic of Mauritius and the Kingdom of Denmark were established on 2 March 1973. Denmark is a member of the European Union and has a vibrant growing economy. Strategically located, Denmark has lucrative access to the Scandinavian region as well as the European market. There is an untapped potential for trade with Denmark and to increase the number of Danish tourists to Mauritius.

 Mauritius participates in the ASAHCA
International Women’s Day Fashion Show in London on 9th March 2017

As a member of the Association of Spouses of African High Commissioners and Ambassadors in London (ASAHCA), Mauritius participated in the celebration of the International Women’s Day held on 9 March 2017 at the Egyptian Ambassador’s Residence in London.

An International Women’s Fashion Show was held on that occasion to commemorate 40 years of international commitment to women’s empowerment and gender equality.

A Mauritian designer, Ms Shaleena Nowbuth and a Mauritian model, Ms Anousha Couttigane added a Mauritian touch to the Fashion Show.

Eminent personalities attended the International Women’s Fashion Show. Other distinguished guests who participated in the event were diplomatic spouses in London and women from different agencies who work closely with African Diplomatic Representatives in London. Two news presenters from BBC London were also present, namely Ms Zeinab Badawi and W. Zaiane.

The event was a resounding success for the ASAHCA of which Mauritius is an integral part and a proud member. Mauritius was represented by Mrs Kamal Nunkoo, spouse of the High Commissioner of Mauritius in London.

  Signing of the Double Taxation Avoidance Agreement (DTAA) between the Republic of Mauritius and the Government of Jersey

On behalf of the Government of the Republic of Mauritius, His Excellency Mr Girish Nunkoo, High Commissioner of Mauritius to the United Kingdom and Northern Ireland and Senator Sir Philip Bailhache, Minister for External Relations for the Government of Jersey signed a Double Taxation Avoidance Agreement between Mauritius and Jersey on 3 March 2017 in London.

Under this Agreement, double taxation which is an impediment to cross-border activities will be eliminated. The Agreement also provides for reduced taxation at source or exemption on various sources of income and this should be an added incentive for an increase in cross- border activities.

The agreement is being given considerable importance in supporting business links and also a powerful inducement for entrepreneurs of both countries to explore the possibilities for mutually profitable ventures.

  His Excellency Girish Nunkoo Presentation at the Board of Governors of Commonwealth Foundation Leading to the Appointment of Ambassador Shree Baboo Chekitan Servansing as Chair of the Commonwealth Foundation

On 8 November 2016, an Extraordinary Meeting of the Board of Governors of the Commonwealth Foundation was held under the Chairmanship of the Rt. Hon. Patricia Scotland, Secretary-General of the Commonwealth, for the election of the Chair of the Commonwealth Foundation.

Following a secret ballot, Ambassador Servansing was announced as the winner of the ballot by the Secretary-General by an overwhelming consensus based on the votes which were overwhelmingly in favour of Ambassador Servansing.

The Board of Governors endorsed Ambassador Servansing by acclaim to the post of Chair of the Commonwealth Foundation.

The vote in favour of Ambassador Servansing follows an extensive intervention of His Excellency Mr. Girish Nunkoo and an intensive lobbying campaign undertaken by Mission before the ballot process.

On 12 December 2016, the Rt. Hon. Patricia Scotland formally informed Ambassador Servansing of his appointment as Chair of the Commonwealth Foundation.

 Presentation of Letter of Credence to Holy See

The High Commissioner H.E. Girish Nunkoo presented his letter of credence to His Holiness Pope Francis, as Ambassador Extraordinary and Plenipotentiary of Mauritius to the Holy See, with residence in London in a ceremony where five (5) other Ambassadors also presented their Credentials namely; Sweden, Fiji, Moldova, Turkey and Burundi.

The ceremony itself was held in the Clementine Hall which was established in the 16th century by Pope Clement VIII in honour of Pope Clement I, the third pope. Like other chapels and apartments in the Palace, the hall is notable for its large collection of frescos and other art and together with the solemnity of the occasion, gave the distinct impression to all those present of stepping into history.

Whilst presenting his Credentials to His Holiness Pope Francis, H.E. G. Nunkoo, had the opportunity to present the greetings of the President, the Prime Minister, the Government as well as the people of Mauritius. His Holiness also bestowed his blessings to the High Commissioner, as well as to the people of Mauritius.

In his address to the newly accredited Ambassadors, the Pope conveyed the assurances of his prayers to the Heads of State of the countries present and for their nations at large.

He recalled the spiritual and moral values grounded in the very nature of human beings and preeminent among them, that of peace. He encouraged those holding public office to reject violence as a method for resolving conflicts but rather to deal with them through dialogue and negotiation and to cultivate nonviolence in their conscience and in the exercise of their duties.

The Pope affirmed his wish to work together with governments for the promotion of peace and those other values that contribute to the integral development of individuals and society.

During his visit, His Excellency Girish Nunkoo also had a number of meetings, with H.E. Archbishop Paul Richard Gallagher, Secretary for Relations with States, Monsignior Paolo Borgia, Assessor of the Substitute to the Secretariat of State and His Eminence Cardinal Pietro Parolin, Secretary of State.

In all those meetings His Excellency Girish Nunkoo had the opportunity to discuss matters of mutual interest and cooperation in the education sector amongst others and to reflect on the elevation of Cardinal Piat at the Consitory which was held on 19 November 2016 and the importance given by the Government of Mauritius to the ceremony, with the particpation of seven Ministers of the Republic.

He also shared the sense of immense pride felt by the whole population of Mauritius irrespective of their religious beliefs regarding the elevation of Cardinal Piat. A testimony to the harmony that prevails in our multi-cultural and multi-religious society.

The Ambassador also informed that upon his return to Mauritius, Cardinal Piat was received by the Prime Minister himself and the majority of the Government at the airport. An honour that befitted the grandeur of the occasion.

The Ambassador was confident that both the elevation of Cardinal Piat to the College of Cardinals and his Presentation of Credentials to His Holiness Pope Francis, would further cement the relations between our two states.

  High Commissioner Meeting the Papal Representative in London

On Wednesday 7 December 2016, His Excellency Mr Girish Nunkoo, Ambassador-designate to the Holy-See paid a courtesy call on His Most Reverend Excellency Antonio Mennini, Apostolic Nuncio to Great Britain. The Ambassador-designate will present his Credentials as Ambassador of Mauritius to His Holiness Pope Francis on 15 December 2016.

The Apostolic Nuncio who is the Papal Representative to Great Britain welcomed the Ambassador-designate. The latter briefed the Nuncio on the recent Consistory Ceremony and the elevation of Archbishop Piat to the rank of Cardinal last month.

The Nuncio advised that during his trip to Vatican the Ambassador-designate should call on:

- Cardinal Piertro Paolin, who presides over the Holy See, Secretariat of State;

- Father Paul Gallagher, Secretary of State for Relation with States of the Holy See and

- Archbishop Filoni, who is in charge of the African Region.

His Excellency Mr. Girish Nunkoo thanked the Nuncio for his warm welcome, advice and guidance and expressed the wish that his accreditation to the Holy See will pave the way for closer cooperation for mutual interest of both Mauritius and the Holy See.

 Courtesy Call by Mr Deodat Maharaj, Deputy Secretary-General, Economic and Social Development, Commonwealth Secretariat on His Excellency Mr Girish Nunkoo, High Commissioner on 29 November 2016, London

Prior to proceeding to Mauritius or the first meeting of the Steering Committee for the Commonwealth Climate Finance Access Hub, Mr. Deodat Maharaj, Deputy Secretary-General, Economic and Social Development at the Commonwealth Secretariat paid a courtesy call on His Excellency Mr Girish Nunkoo, High Commissioner on 29 November 2016 at the Mauritius High Commission in London.

The Commonwealth Climate Finance Access Hub, hosted by the Government of Mauritius, is holding the first meeting of its Steering Committee from 7 to 8 December 2016 in Port Louis, Mauritius.

The High Commissioner and the Deputy Secretary-General stressed on the important role the Commonwealth Climate Finance Access Hub has to play in helping vulnerable small states and developing countries of the Commonwealth to access Climate Finance and in capacity building to undertake implementation of climate related projects.

The High Commissioner seized the opportunity to express his gratitude to the Deputy Secretary-General for his personal commitment in ensuring the speedy operationalisation of the Hub.

The High Commissioner and Deputy Secretary-General Maharaj also exchanged views on issues of technical assistance of the Commonwealth to Mauritius.

  Establishment of Diplomatic Relations between Mauritius and Saint Christopher and Nevis

On behalf of the Government of the Republic of Mauritius, His Excellency Mr Girish Nunkoo, High Commissioner of Mauritius to the United Kingdom and Northern Ireland and His Excellency Dr Kevin M. Isaac, High Commissioner of Saint Christopher and Nevis to the United Kingdom and Northern Ireland signed a Joint Communique on the Establishment of Diplomatic Relations between Mauritius and Saint Christopher and Nevis on 25 November 2016 in London.

The idea of establishing formal diplomatic relations between the two countries was initially discussed by the Prime Ministers of Mauritius and Saint Christopher and Nevis respectively in the margins of the Commonwealth Heads of Government Meeting held in Malta in November 2015.

The establishment of formal diplomatic relations is expected to enhance interaction and cooperation between the Governments of Mauritius and Saint Kitts and Nevis at the bilateral level as well as in multilateral fora such as the United Nations, Commonwealth and the Alliance of Small Island States, amongst others.

 Elevation of Bishop Maurice Piat to the Rank of Cardinal

His Excellency Mr. Girish Nunkoo, Ambassador-designate to the Holy See formed part of the strong Ministerial delegation led by The Hon Charles Gaëtan Xavier-Luc Duval, GCSK, Deputy Prime Minister, Minister of Tourism & External Communications which attended the Consistory on 19 November 2016, organised by the Papal Household marking the elevation of our very own Bishop Maurice Piat together with 16 other Archbishops and Bishops to the rank of Cardinals. The delegation also attended the Papal Mass held on 20 November 2016. Both ceremonies were held in St Peter’s Basilica, the Vatican.

A number of side events were also held to mark this grand occasion. A mass for the Mauritan Community on 20 November 2016 was conducted in Rome by the newly ordained Cardinal. The Government of Mauritius also invited the delegation of the Diocese to an official lunch at the Rome Marriott Grand Hotel Flora on 21 November 2016.

The Mauritus delegation together with Cardinal Piat had a meeting with Father Paul Gallagher, Secretary of State for Relation with States of the Holy See on 21 November 2016 to discuss matters of mutual interest and cooperation.

  Mauritius joining the The Queen’s Commonwealth Canopy (QCC) project to Combatting Global Warming

Mauritius once again demonstrated its determination and commitment to combatting global warming by joining The Queen’s Commonwealth Canopy (QCC) project which is primarily the creation of a network of forest conservation initiatives.

At a Reception at Buckingham Palace Reception on 15 November 2016, The Queen presented to His Excellency Mr. Girish Nunkoo, High Commissioner, The Queen’s Commonwealth Canopy Certificate of partnership as an acknowledgment of Mauritius’commitment to the initiative.

Her Majesty The Queen, accompanied by His Royal Highness The Duke of Edinburgh acknowledged the dedications from 20 countries across the Commonwealth, to The Queen’s Commonwealth Canopy. The Reception was attended by high-profile guests including Sir David Attenborough, the Secretary of State for Foreign & Commonwealth Affairs, Boris Johnson, and the Deputy Prime Minister of Saint Kitts and Nevis, Shawn Richards.

Mauritius’ submissions to The Queen’s Commonwealth Canopy were displayed at the Buckingham Palace, to showcase our forestry projects and the dedication of Mauritius to this pan-Commonwealth initiative. During the Reception, the Royal Family, its entourage and guests were invited to browse through the 20 submissions to discuss the different projects.

The QCC is a project designed to create a network of forest conservation initiatives throughout the 52 nations of the Commonwealth to mark Her Majesty The Queen’s service and dedication as Head of the Commonwealth.

Its key objectives are to:

- Commit to raising awareness within the Commonwealth of the value of indigenous forests and to saving them for future generations;

- Create a unique network of forest conservation projects that brings collective credibility and integrity to individual Commonwealth initiatives;

- Raise the profile of the Commonwealth, demonstrating the capacity of its 52 member countries to act together as one to ensure forest conservation; and

- Use the Commonwealth network to facilitate a programme of knowledge exchange activities, to share best practice and to create new, collaborative initiatives that contribute to forest conservation across the globe.

  Annual Remembrance Day Ceremony in London on Sunday 13 November 2016 Wreath-Laying by His Excellency, Mr. Girish Nunkoo, High Commissioner

At the invitation of the Foreign and Commonwealth Office, His Excellency Mr. Girish Nunkoo and his spouse represented the Government of Mauritius at a Wreath-Laying Ceremony in the context of the Armistice Day (also called Remembrance Day) on Sunday 13 November 2016. The ceremony, which took place at Whitehall in London, takes place each year to remember servicemen and women killed in the two world wars.

The main ceremony took place at Whitehall in London with more than 700 soldiers, sailors and members of the Royal Air Force in attendance. A service was performed by the Bishop of London, the Right Reverend Richard Chartres and 8,000 people took part in the march past the Cenotaph.

The Queen laid the first wreath at of the Cenotaph, followed by the Duke of Edinburgh, other royal family members, Prime Minister Theresa May and other party leaders and the diplomatic corps.

A two-minute Silence fell at 11:00 GMT to mark Remembrance Sunday. After the remembrance service, veterans and current military personnel paraded down Whitehall.

Many Mauritians have grandparents and parents who fought for the Royal British Legion and The Mauritius Ex-Services Trust Fund is a member of the Royal Commonwealth Ex-Services League with its Headquarters in London.

Her Majesty the Queen is the Patron of the Royal Commonwealth Ex-Services League (RCEL) which caters for the welfare of the Ex-Servicemen of all Commonwealth countries. It may be noted that His Excellency the High Commissioner of Mauritius in London is the representative of The Mauritius Ex-Services Trust Fund at the Council Meetings of the RCEL. The RCEL holds two Council Meetings each year and comprises 56 Member Organisations.

His Excellency the High Commissioner and Mrs Nunkoo were touched by the prevailing atmosphere and had a really moving experience at the Remembrance Day Wreath-Laying Ceremony.

  Presentation of Letter of Credence to Sweden by His Excellency Mr. Girish Nunkoo, High Commissioner

The High Commissioner, His Excellency Girish Nunkoo presented his letter of credence to His Majesty King Carl XVI Gustaf of Sweden on 20 October 2016, as Ambassador Extraordinary and Plenipotentiary of Mauritius to Sweden, with residence in London.

For recall, Mauritius established diplomatic relations with the Kingdom of Sweden in 1973 and it is the High Commission in London, which is accredited to Sweden.

The High Commissioner had a private audience with the King of Sweden, where he presented the Letters of Recall of his predecessor as well as his own Letter of Credence. The High Commissioner also presented the warm greetings of the President, the Prime Minister, the Government as well as the people of Mauritius to the King.

During his visit, the High Commissioner also had the opportunity to have a number of meetings to discuss bilateral issues of importance, with the relevant authorities in Sweden, as well as with major Swedish stakeholders in the tourism, banking, international trade and international development cooperation sector, with the aim of reinforcing existing sectors and also to explore new avenues of cooperation.

There has been a significant increase in exports to Sweden in recent years and the number of tourists’ arrival from Sweden during the past years has also increased substantially. Experts feel that there is even more possibilities in both sectors, as the full trade and tourism potential are yet to be tapped.

The meetings were very constructive and the sectors identified for renewed and accrued collaboration between Mauritius and Sweden was shared with the concerned Mauritian stakeholders and a roadmap was established.

The mission of the High Commissioner was successful thanks to the full support of the Honorary Consul of Mauritius in Stockholm, Mr Tord Magnuson and the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Sweden.

 Courtesy call on the H.E. Mr. Girish Nunkoo, High Commissioner

The newly appointed General Manager of the Climate Finance Access Hub, Mr Bilal Anwar accompanied by Mr H. Nyambe and Ms R. Price from the Commonwealth Secretariat paid a courtesy call on the High Commissioner H.E. Mr. Girish Nunkoo, on 21 September 2016.

The High Commissioner took the opportunity to stress on the work accomplished for the setting up of the Hub in Mauritius, which has culminated in the signing of the Host Country Agreement between Mauritius and the Commonwealth in New York on 20 September 2016 and the recruitment/deployment of the General Manager of the Hub.

The High Commissioner also highlighted the crucial importance of the Hub in assisting SIDs and LDCs, to access funding to combat the adverse effects of climate change.

In this respect, the High Commissioner emphasised Mr Anwar’s task at hand and necessity for him to hit the ground running in Mauritius, especially considering that 12 countries had already formally requested for assistance in the recruitment of National Advisers.

 Mr. Hugo Frost of the Foreign and Commonwealth Office bids farewell to H.E. Mr. Girish Nunkoo, High Commissioner

Mr Hugo Frost, who has been the Desk Officer for Mauritius at the Foreign and Commonwealth Office (FCO) for the past 4 years, paid a courtesy call on the High Commissioner, His Excellency, Mr. Girish Nunkoo, on Monday 25 July 2016.

During the meeting, Mr Hugo Frost was accompanied by Mr Neil Porter. The latter will replace Mr Frost (at the FCO) as the new Desk Officer for Mauritius. Mr Hugo Frost introduced Mr Neil Porter to the High Commissioner and pointed out his excellent credentials.

Mr Frost and the High Commissioner seized the opportunity to make a “tour d’horizon” of our bilateral relations and surveyed the political situation in the wake of Brexit. Both sides agreed to reinforce bilateral ties. The High Commissioner thanked Mr Frost for his sterling cooperation and services provided during these 4 years. He also welcomed Mr Neil Porter and guaranteed him the full support of the High Commission.

Mr Neil Porter has served in South Africa and Egypt, among others, and has been at the service of the FCO for over 30 years. He is married and has four children.

Diplomatic staff members of the Mauritius High Commission were also present. The High Commission then hosted the two FCO officials to a lunch.

The two Officials were invited to sign the Visitors Book.

 Queen’s Young Leaders Awards 2016

Mission attended the Queen’s Young Leader Awards Ceremony on 23 June 2016 at Buckingham Palace, where the 60 award winners for 2016 received their Award from Her Majesty The Queen Elizabeth II. Mr Deegesh Maywah was the Award winner from Mauritius for 2016 as he has been recognised by The Queen for taking the lead in transforming the lives of others and making a lasting difference in his community.

Selected from a competitive process where thousands of young people from all over the Commonwealth applied to be a Queen’s Young Leader, Mr Deegesh Maywah was acknowledged as an exceptional young person for his work to enable people with disabilities to enter the workforce.

The Queen’s Young Leaders Programme was established in honour of Her Majesty The Queen 60 years of service to the Commonwealth at the time of her Diamond Jubilee. Guided by the values of the Commonwealth Charter, the goal of the Programme is to enable young people to step up as leaders and improve the lives of people across the Commonwealth. The initiative is led by the Queen’s Diamond Jubilee Trust in partnership with Comic Relief, Cambridge University and the Royal Commonwealth Society.

Before receiving their Award the winners had the opportunity to visit 10 Downing Street, the UK headquarters of Twitter, projects that are changing the lives of vulnerable people in the UK and the BBC World Service. They also met with the Commonwealth Secretary General as well as UK business leaders. These high-level engagements are all designed to help the winners to further their life-changing work.

The application process to become a 2017 Queen’s Young Leader opens at 08h00 on Friday 24 June 2016. The programme is looking for people aged between 18 and 29 who are dedicated to creating positive changes to the lives of people in Mauritius. Details on the applications on how to become a Queen’s Young Leader is available at www.queensyoungleaders.com

AWARD WINNER FROM MAURITIUS, Mr Deegesh Maywah (27) (Please click to read more)

  Mr. Narainsamy Naydoo Appasawmy, the Mauritian centenarian in the United Kingdom

Mauritian national, Mr. Narainsamy Naidoo Appasawmy celebrated his 100th birthday today Wednesday 22 June 2016 in London. To honour Mr. Appasawmy’s 100th birthday, staff members from the Mauritius High Commission paid a visit to Mr. Appasawmy to present him with the congratulation letter personally signed by The President of the Republic of Mauritius, H.E. Mrs Ameenah Gurib-Fakim, G.C.S.K., C.S.K., PhD., DSc., a birthday card and flowers. Mr. Appasamy and his family appreciated the initiative.

Mr. Appasawmy used to live in Belle Rose and is a government pensioner having worked for the Public Works Department (now Ministry of Public Infrastructure). He is in good health, enjoys writing and has already published seven (7) books. On the occasion of his 100th birthday, Mr. Appasawmy donated a copy of the seven (7) books to Mauritius High Commission.

Mr Appasawmy said that his ambition is to now write his own biography.

 Commonwealth Board of Governors Meeting 2 June 2016, Marlborough House, London

The annual meeting of the Board of Governors of the Commonwealth was held on 2 June 2016 at Marlborough House.

The High Commissioner, His Excellency Mr. Girish Nunkoo, together with Mr. K. Jingree, First Secretary and Mr. M. Y. Hansrod, Second Secretary, attended the meeting, which was chaired by the High Commissioner of Rwanda.

In her opening remarks, the Secretary-General of the Commonwealth, Mrs. Patricia Scotland spoke about her priorities for the Commonwealth Secretariat as it embarks on a new chapter in its existence with the development of new strategic plan for 2017/18 - 2020/21.

A number of other important issues were also discussed, such as the budget for the fiscal year ahead and the implementation of the CHOGM 2015 mandates.

In this respect, H.E. Mr. Girish Nunkoo, our High Commissioner, had the opportunity to provide to the board an update on Mauritius’ commitment to the quick and diligent operationalisation of the Climate Finance Access Hub which Mauritius is hosting.

The Meeting closed with agreement by the Board of the next annual meeting which will be held on 1 June 2017.

 The International Day of United Nations Peacekeepers – 25 May 2016, London

His Excellency Mr. Girish Nunkoo, High Commissioner of the Republic of Mauritius participated in the wreath laying ceremony organised by the United Nations Association in London on 25 May 2016 to pay tribute to the UN peacekeepers on the International Day of United Nations Peacekeepers. Military, UN practitioners, Heads of Missions, dignitaries joined United Nations veterans to remember those who lost their lives while deployed with the UN and wreaths were laid for the 3,471 UN peacekeepers who risk their lives to help protect civilians across the world.

The International Day of United Nations Peacekeepers is a day to remember those who served in United Nations (UN) peacekeeping operations. Memorial services and wreath laying events take place for UN Peacekeepers who died in the service of global peace.

The annual event of remembrance memorial ceremony was organised by the United Nations Association at the Cenotaph at Whitehall in London.

 Mauritius High Commission plays a key role in the celebration of the African Union Day

The High Commissioner, His Excellency, Mr. Girish Nunkoo, Mrs. Nunkoo and members of the diplomatic staff of the High Commission attended the African Union Day celebrations which took place in the City Hall of Kensington in London on 25 May 2016.

African Union Day is the annual commemoration on 25th May of each year of the 1963 founding of the Organisation of African Unity (OAU), presently known as the African Union (AU). The theme of African Union Day 2016 is “Human rights, with a particular focus on women”.

The event was chaired by the Acting Dean of the African diplomatic corps, H.E. Mr. Nkwelle Ekaney, High Commissioner of Cameroun and the Guest of Honour, was the UK Minister for Africa, Hon. James Duddridge. Several members of the House of Lords and Commons were invited to the event, including members of the African diplomatic corps in London, the Commonwealth Secretariat and other dignitaries. Speeches were given by H.E. Mr. N. Ekaney and Hon. James Duddridge.

The daughter of the High Commissioner, Ms. Anya Nunkoo, performed on stage in one of the cultural activities. She represented the Republic of Mauritius. Her performance was very well appreciated. Ms. Anya was accompanied on the piano by Ms. Charlotte Zone, who also performed separately. Kenya and Egypt were the two other countries that also gave cultural performances. The cultural event kicked off with the London African Choir singing the AU national anthem.

Typical African food and drinks were served to all invited guests, some 250 of them. Each Mission was entrusted prepare a typical national dish – Mauritius provided chicken curry. An African exhibition, coordinated by the Mauritius High Commission, was also held in the margins of the African Union Day.

 Visit of Hon. Ashit Kumar Gungah, Minister of Industry, Commerce and Consumer Protection to London

Hon. Ashit Kumar Gungah, Minister of Industry, Commerce and Consumer Protection of the Republic of Mauritius led a delegation of some 24 textile companies that showcased their products on 25 and 26 May 2016 at a Buyers Sellers Meeting (BSM) at the Hilton Olympia in London. The delegation also comprised of Mrs Rajwantee Ramrukheea, Permanent Secretary of the Ministry of Industry, Commerce and Consumer Protection as well as Mr Yusuf Salehmohamed, Chairperson of Enterprise Mauritius and Mr Arvind Radhakrishna, CEO of Enterprise Mauritius.

The BSM, which was organised by Enterprise Mauritius (the National Trade Promotion Organisation), was an opportunity for UK buyers and stakeholders to discover a wide range of apparel products, such as t-shirts, denims, pullovers, suits, kids wear, swimwear, etc.. manufactured by Mauritian companies and engage with them on potential future business ventures.

The textile industry in Mauritius is considered as the catalyst of the Mauritian industrial revolution, having spearheaded the structural transformation of the Mauritian economy. There exists a long trade and business relationship between Mauritius and the UK, with Mauritius being a regular exporter to major UK retailers.

In his opening speech at the BSM, Hon Gungah emphasised that over the last four decades Mauritius has built a commendable international reputation as a supplier of a wide range of quality garments. He pointed out that the objective of the BSM was primarily market consideration and expansion. After his opening statement, Hon Minister Gungah accompanied by H.E Mr Girish Nunkoo, High Commissioner, and the Chairman and CEO of Enterprise Mauritius visited all the Stands at the BSM and briefly exchanged a few words of encouragement with the exhibitors.

The delegation led by Hon. Ashit Kumar Gungah also seized the opportunity of its presence in London to hold bilateral meetings with the London Chamber of Commerce and Industry, the Commonwealth Enterprise and Investment Council, the Developing Markets Associates, and the British Chambers of Commerce to discuss avenues of cooperation.

 Royal Garden Party at the Buckingham Palace

The High Commissioner and members of staff participated in the Royal Garden Party at the Buckingham Palace on Thursday 19 May 2016.

The event was attended by several thousand invitees, MPs and Members of Cabinet, members of the diplomatic corps and their families as well as dignitaries and eminent people from civil society and others who hold a public position or are in some way of national interest.

Marquees and tents were erected to receive the guests and refreshments were served.

 The Association of Spouses of African High Commissioners and Ambassadors Meeting on 12 May 2016 at the Mauritius High Commission

The Association of Spouses of African High Commissioners and Ambassadors (ASAHCA) is a registered association in the United Kingdom. All spouses of Heads of Missions of African Union (AU) Member States represented in London are members and also all ladies who are Heads of Missions as High Commissioners and Ambassadors.

The Association was founded in 1982 with a membership of 31 African countries represented in London and was named “Association of Wives of Heads of African Missions (AWHAM)” and the title changed to ASAHCA in 2007.

The motto of the ASAHCA is “UNITY and STRENGTH”. The objectives of the ASAHCA includes social networking, promotion of African Culture, raising of funds to support humanitarian and development projects in African countries, especially in the fields of education, health and related charitable organizations in the United Kingdom.

The ASAHCA holds monthly meetings on a rotational basis and the host country for the month of May 2016 was Mauritius. The spouse of H.E. Mr. Girish Nunkoo welcomed the members present and the meeting discussed the issues on its agenda.

The preparation for the African Union Day celebrated on 25 May 2016 in London, topped the agenda of ASAHCA. So far, Mauritius scored the highest turnover in terms of attendance and four High Commissioners/Ambassadors were present.

As part of the AU Day Celebration, Miss Anya Nunkoo, daughter of His Excellency the High Commissioner and Miss Charlotte Zone will jointly be present at a musical programme.

The meeting was followed by lunch and usually each country has national dishes on the menu. The efforts of Mrs Kamal Nunkoo and the Mauritius High Commission was very well appreciated and applauded by members of the ASAHCA who enjoyed the Mauritian cuisine and the hospitality of Mrs Kamal Nunkoo.

 High Commissioner Nunkoo attends State Opening of Parliament and the Queen’s Speech for 2016 at Parliament in Westminster

The High Commissioner, His Excellency, Mr. Girish Nunkoo, attended the ceremony marking the Queen’s speech 2016 at Parliament in Westminster on Wednesday 18 May 2016. It marks the formal start of the parliamentary year and the Queen's Speech sets out the government’s agenda for the coming session, outlining proposed policies and legislation. The ceremony comes as part of the Queen’s duty as the Head of State to formally open each new session of Parliament. The speech is made in the House of Lords.

The ceremony was attended by Cabinet Ministers, MPs, high officials of the UK Government, members of the diplomatic corps in London, civil society representatives and many other dignitaries.

Among the main bills outlined in the Queen’s 2016 Speech, some dealt with issues having to do with a British Bill of Rights (that will replace the British Human Rights Act); a shake-up in the British prison system; a review of the care and adoption rules in the UK; policies tackling terrorism, radicalisation and extremism and legislation for driverless cars, among others.

The Queen’s State opening of Parliament is an event full of colours and pomp, with traditions and customs which go back in history. It's one of the most grandiose events of the year, with the Queen putting on her best finery and trotting to Parliament in her golden carriage.The tradition of the Queen’s Speech can be traced back to 1536.

At the end of the event, a select group of High Commissioners/Ambassadors and other dignitaries were invited to a reception by the British Group of Inter-Parliamentary Union and the Commonwealth Parliamentary Association.

 Minister Sudarshan Bhadain speaks at the jointly organized Mo Ibrahim/Commonwealth Secretariat event in London

The Minister of Financial Services, Good Governance and Institutional Reforms, Hon. Sudarshan Bhadain, the High Commissioner, His Excellency, Mr. Girish Nunkoo, and members of staff of the London High Commission participated in an event jointly organized by the Mo Ibrahim Foundation and the Commonwealth Secretariat on the issue of Good Governance for Sustainable Development. The event took place on Tuesday 17 May 2016.

The Minister of Financial Services, Good Governance and Institutional Reforms intervened during the meeting on the theme of “Strengthening Good Governance in Mauritius”. Hon. Bhadain gave an outline of the major steps taken by the current Government to consolidate the good governance architecture in order to make Mauritius an attractive destination for international investors.

Hon. Bhadain spoke at length on the 2015 Good Governance and Integrity Reporting (GGIR) Act which fast tracks criminal justice processes in investigating and prosecuting people involved in corrupt practices and those unexplained wealth. He indicated that the constitution of Mauritius was amended to make provision for unexplained wealth. One of the main objects of the GGIR Act was to disclose malpractices and recover unexplained wealth. The Minister also expanded on a host of other steps taken by Government to make tangible progress on good governance.

This was followed by a discussion. This session was aimed at facilitating best practices among Commonwealth members and to hold a peer to peer exchange of views within the Secretariat.

Other subjects of discussion at the meeting were how to leverage the benefits of Commonwealth membership and how the Commonwealth was supporting countries in strengthening democratic governance; human rights; and the rule of law, among others. It also saw the active participation of various divisions of the Commonwealth Secretariat dealing with these subjects.

 H. E. Mr. Girish Nunkoo and Professor Nabil Ayad, Director, Loughborough University, London at the opening of the Symposium on Diplomacy in the 21st Century

The High Commissioner. His Excellency, Mr. Girish Nunkoo, took part in an International Symposium on Diplomacy in the 21st Century on 11th and 12th May 2016 in London. The event was organized by the Academy of Diplomacy and International Governance of the Loughborough University of London, the Canadian Science Policy Centre as well as the London Diplomatic Science Club.

The International Symposium saw the participation of Diplomats based in London, Members of the UK Parliament, the academia, members from the scientific community, and representatives from NGOs and the Civil Society, among others.

Eminent speakers at the event came from the Canadian Global Affairs Institute; Women in the Diplomatic Service Association; the Loughborough University of London; the York University of Toronto; the Commonwealth Secretariat; and the Canadian Science Policy Centre, among others.

Keynote addresses were made by the Secretary for Research Development and Innovation, H. E. Ms Carmen Vela Olmo; the Earl of Selborne who is also the Chair of the House of Lords Science and Technology Committee; and the Deputy Secretary General of the Commonwealth, Dr. Josephine Ojiambo.

The themes on the programme for discussion comprised, among others, Science Diplomacy: best practices and challenges; comparative national approaches: networks, policies and programmes; and the role of Universities, Research Centres and Learned Societies: Bridging the chasm between science and policy.

 Hon. Sudarshan Bhadain gives interview on BBC on the revised Double Taxation Avoidance Agreement with India

As part of his Mission to London, the Minister of Financial Services, Good Governance and Institutional Reforms, Hon. S. Bhadain, gave an interview on BBC Business Services on Monday 15th May 2016. He spoke on the recently revised Double Taxation Avoidance Agreement with India.

In the interview, Hon. Bhadain indicated that financial services in Mauritius represented about 10.4 % of GDP but that global business itself constituted only about 3 % of that percentage. The Minister pointed out that given the changes taking place in the field of global business in Europe with the Base Erosion and Profit Shifting and in India with the General Anti-Avoidance Rule, the Treaty with India, which had been under negotiation for some ten years, could not remain the same.

Minister Bhadain added that with the revised Treaty, Mauritius would be a much cleaner and transparent jurisdiction.

The video link is as follows: https://we.tl/MdlFem4fNB

 

High Commissioner Nunkoo participates in a high-level Conference on Tackling Corruption Together

The High Commissioner, His Excellency, Mr Girish Nunkoo, took part in a high-level conference entitled "Tackling Corruption Together: a Conference for Civil Society, Business and Government Leaders". The event was organized by the Commonwealth Secretariat in London on Wednesday 11 May 2016.

Several dignitaries and high profile personalities from across the world and from business, civil society and government, were present, among others, the President of Nigeria, Mr. Muhammadu Buhari; the Founder of the Mo Ibrahim Foundation, Mr Mo Ibrahim; the General Secretary of the International Trade Union Congress, Mr Sharan Burrow; the Senior US District Judge Mr Mark Wolf; the Director of the International Consortium of Investigative Journalists; the Managing Director of Transparency International, Mr Cobus De Swardt; and the Prime Minister of Malta, Mr Joseph Muscat. The Secretary General of the Commonwealth Secretariat, Baroness Scotland and other senior officials of the Secretariat were also in attendance. The Diplomatic Corps in London was also present.

Baroness Scotland, who opened the Conference at Marlborough House, urged all the three groups to combine forces to fight the global scourge of corruption. She stated that cooperation and collaboration between different nation states would be critical to address the challenges of bribery and corruption. She announced the development of a Commonwealth Standard to tackle corruption and the establishment of an international scheme for better procurement across the public and private sectors.

High Commissioner Nunkoo took the floor during the 3rd Plenary Session on "Empowering Citizens and Business by supporting Whistleblowers, Civil Society and a Free Media" to introduce the Good Governance and Integrity Reporting Act of 2015. He highlighted some of the prominent features of the Act which, among others, caters for whistleblowers' protection and reward.

Several burning issues were on the Agenda of the plenary sessions, namely preventing corruption and creating a level playing field and building integrity; ending impunity and upholding the rule of law; commitment announcements and showcase initiatives, among others.

According to the Commonwealth Communique, The Tackling Corruption Together Conference preceded the Anti-Corruption Summit that took place on Thursday 12 May 2016 and which was hosted by the UK Prime Minister and whose aim was to agree on a package of practical steps to expose and drive out corrupt practices.

The High Commissioner,His Excellency Mr.Girish Nunkoo,attends the speech­event of the British Prime Minister on the EU Referendum

The High Commissioner, His Excellency Mr. Girish Nunkoo, attended a speech event on the EU Referendum given by the British Prime Minister, David Cameron, on Monday 09th May 2016. The event formed an important part of the "Stay in the EU" campaign ahead of the referendum on the issue scheduled for 23 June 2016.

The Diplomatic Corps in London, MPs, high officials of the Foreign and Commonwealth Office and other dignitaries were present at the meeting.

In a passionate and patriotic speech, the British Prime Minister made the case against an eventual British exit from the EU (Brexit). He said that the 23rd June EU referendum would decide the destiny of the UK not only for decades but "perhaps for a lifetime". He added that leaving the EU would inflict real damage to the UK,its economy and its power in the world.

Mr. Cameron said that the UK was stronger, safer and better off by remaining a member of the EU. It was part of a single market of 500 million people and British people could trade freely by right. The membership to the single market had allowed for the creation of 2.4 million jobs over the last 6 years and was attracting so many companies from overseas to invest in the UK. If the UK voted for a Brexit, the cost to every household in Britain would be as high as £4300 by 2030.

On the other hand, the only certainty that the UK would have by leaving would be uncertainty. According to Mr Cameron, the Brexit camp seemed unable to set out a clear,comprehensive plan for the future of the UK outside the EU.They did not know the answers and had no plan. Mr Cameron mentioned that a Brexit would weaken solidarity and unity within the West as a whole. It would make cooperation within the EU legally complex and access to vital information much slower and difficult.

The UK Prime Minister concluded his speech by stating that UK's allies "from America to Asia, from Australasia and the Indian sub-continent" had clearly indicated that they wanted the UK to remain a member of the EU. The UK now had a unique opportunity to take the "best of both worlds",ie staying in the EU and exercising independence on crucial matters that hinge on the UK's sovereignty and economic interests.

CommonTies Launch Event

The High Commissioner, His Excellency Mr. Girish Nunkoo, participates in a Conference on Treaty-making in Investment Law at the International Arbitration Institute in London

The High Commissioner, His Excellency Mr Girish Nunkoo, participated in a Conference on Treaty-making in Investment Law.  The event took place on Tuesday 19 April in London and was organised by the International Arbitration Institute (IAI). 

One of the most important objectives of the IAI, which is based in Paris, is to promote transparency among the international arbitration community.  It also promotes communication among the various players in the field of international arbitration and creates networking for best practices.   The conference brought together legal experts and drafters, diplomats, academia, arbitrators, lawyers, reporters and counsels in the field of international arbitration. 

There were several panels constituted to discuss various themes of practical importance:  treaty drafting and effective language; the negotiation of specific treaty provisions and their protection; the bilateral and multilateral negotiation framework and the balance to be achieved; access to treaty negotiations as a means to interpret treaties, among others.  The presentations were very informative and lively discussions ensued.

The keynote address on the topic of “The powers of the arbitrators in the interpretation of investment treaty provisions” was given by Mr. S. McDougal, Professor of International Law at the Yale Law School.

In a Seminar at the Inner Temple, High Commissioner Nunkoo calls for a Pan-Commonwealth approach to tackling corruption in Commonwealth member states.

In a communique from the Commonwealth Secretariat on the issue of dealing with fraud, bribery and corruption in Commonwealth countries, the High Commissioner, His Excellency Mr. Girish Nunkoo, added his voice by stating that the complexity and the interconnectedness of the problem required “a Pan-Commonwealth approach”. The High Commissioner added that the Commonwealth provided “an opportunity and the right platform to strengthen Commonwealth co-operation through effective networking”. H.E. Mr Girish Nunkoo proposed that the Commonwealth could also identify “the best-fit solutions to intensify the global fight against corruption”.

The Commonwealth Secretariat issued the Communique at the end of a highly deliberative Seminar at the Inner Temple on Monday 18th April 2016 attended by several UK MPs, renowned lawyers, judges, High Commissioners, the academia, the Secretary General of the Commonwealth Secretariat and the business community in London.

The Commonwealth Secretary General, Baroness Patricia Scotland QC, announced plans to launch a new Commonwealth “kitemark” against corruption, alongside an Office of Civil and Criminal Justice Reform to help countries enhance policy-making and legislation. She also stated that she had heard loud and clear the call from Commonwealth member states to eliminating fraud, bribery and corruption which constituted an impediment to economic development and compromised “fairness and equality of opportunity in our societies”.


High Commissioner Participates in high-level Seminar on Corruption

The High Commissioner, His Excellency Mr Girish Nunkoo, participated in a high-level seminar on "Promoting Prosperity in the Commonwealth: practical ways to combat fraud, bribery and corruption through Commonwealth Co-operation" on Monday 18 April 2016.

The seminar was jointly organised by the Royal Commonwealth Society and the Inner Temple. The event saw the participation of eminent personalities political figures, lawyers and diplomats in London, including the Rt. Hon. The Hon. Howell of Guildford, the Rt. Hon Sir Anthony Hooper, Mr David Green, Director of the UK's Serious Fraud Office, and the Rt. Hon Patricia Scotland, the newly elected Secretary-General of the Commonwealth Secretariat.

The Seminar discussed several themes including ways and means to optimise legislation to prevent corruption and ensure enforcement, and the importance of pan-commonwealth cooperation with a view to making progress on the issue at the next Commonwealth Heads of Government Meeting in the UK in 2018.

High Commissioner, His Excellency, Mr Girish Nunkoo meets with the Honorary Consuls General of Mauritius in Denmark and Northern Ireland

The High Commissioner, His Excellency Mr Girish Nunkoo, met with Mr. Ramesh Rana, Honorary Consul of Mauritius in Northern Ireland and Mr Christian Borch, Honorary Consul of Mauritius in Denmark, on Thursday 24 April 2016.

The meeting was held in the context of the regional meetings with the Honorary Consuls which fall under the jurisdiction of the Mauritius High Commission in London. Earlier, on 11 March 2016, the High Commissioner also met with the Honorary Consul of Sweden, Mr Tord Magnuson. The aim of the meeting was to update our Honorary Consuls on the thrusts of Vision 2030 and the various initiatives taken by the Government to attract foreign investments to Mauritius.

The issues on the agenda of discussion were the Ocean Economy, the Africa Strategy, the Cyber City projects, Tourism, the lCT, the Financial Services, Education, Her Majesty the Queen's Canopy project, Consular services, the Mauritius Diaspora Policy, the Environment, the Climate Finance Access Hub and the Government 2015-2019 Programme, and the forthcoming accreditation of the High Commissioner to Denmark, among others.

 

 

Visit of High Commissioner, H.E. Mr Girish Nunkoo to Mauritius

The High Commissioner, His Excellency Mr Girish Nunkoo, held a series of meetings while in Mauritius in the last week of March 2016.

High Commissioner Nunkoo held two meetings with officials of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, Regional Integration and International Trade; the Ministry of Agro-Industry and Food Security and representatives of the National Parks of Mauritius Department, on the Queen’s Commonwealth Canopy initiative.

This project is designed to create a network of forest conservation initiatives throughout the 53 nations of the Commonwealth to mark Her Majesty The Queen’s service and dedication as Head of the Commonwealth. The project is expected to have a high media coverage in the UK and around the world that will benefit and increase the visibility of Mauritius in the field of environment conservation.

High Commissioner Nunkoo also held discussions with officials at the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, Regional Integration and International Trade on the issue of the Climate Finance Access Hub and seized the opportunity of his presence to visit the offices where the Hub is housed. He was briefed on the future operations of the Hub.

Finally, the High Commissioner held discussions with officials of the Board of Investment on the imminent opening of the Office of the Board of Investment in London. The Office will be located within the premises of the High Commission in London.

 

Commonwealth Day Reception-14 March 2016

The High Commissioner, His Excellency Mr Girish Nunkoo, attended the Commonwealth Day reception on 14 March 2016. It took place at the Marlborough House, the seat of the Commonwealth Secretariat in London and it was hosted by the Secretary General of the Commonwealth Secretariat, Mr. Kamalesh Sharma. The event was also attended by Her Majesty The Queen.

The event was attended by the Diplomatic Corps in London and many other important dignitaries, including the former Secretary General of the United Nations, Mr. Kofi Annan, the former Prime Minister of the UK, Mr John Major, members of the Disabled Society and youth representatives, among others.

 

Reception - Independence Day

The reception to celebrate the 48th anniversary of our independence and the 24th anniversary of our accession to the status of Republic took place at the High Commission on 23rd March 2016. The event was successfully organised.

The High Commissioner hosted many distinguished personalities for the occasion. There was a gathering of over 100 invitees, including members of the Mauritian community in London. The attendees were largely from the diplomatic corps in London, including representatives from Multilateral Organisations.

In his statement, the High Commissioner laid emphasis on the progress made by Mauritius since independence. He said that the journey was not over. He mentioned about Vision 2030 and the roadmap that Government had developed to drive Mauritius towards a high income country. The statement also referred to the historical ties with our traditional partners and focused on the strengthening of our bilateral relations with our host country, the UK. He spoke about the enactment of the Good Governance and Integrity Reporting Act. Mention was also made of our fundamental values of tolerance, human rights, good governance and multiculturalism.

Toasts were raised and the national anthems of both the UK and Mauritius were played.

 

Prayers at Westminster Abbey for the Wellbeing of the Mauritian Nation

The High Commissioner, His Excellency Mr. Girish Nunkoo, his wife, his daughter, Anya, and members of the staff of the London High Commission and their families participated in an-hour long special service dedicated to prayers at the Westminster Abbey in the context of the National Day of Mauritius.

The Session was supported by the famous Choir of Westminster Abbey which is renowned worldwide as one of the finest choirs of its kind.

At the end of the Session, the High Commissioner seized the opportunity to meet and greet the members of the Mauritian community who were his invited guests. The Mauritian national Flag was proudly flying high on the Westminster Abbey for the occasion.

 

High Commissioner, His Excellency, Mr Girish Nunkoo meets with the Honorary Consul General of Mauritius in Sweden, Mr Tord Magnuson

High Commissioner, His Excellency Mr Girish Nunkoo, and staff members of the High Commission had a fruitful meeting with the Honorary Consul General of Mauritius in Sweden, Mr Tord Magnuson, on Friday 11 March 2016.

The aim of the meeting was mainly to brief the Honorary Consul on the thrusts of Vision 2030 and the various initiatives taken by the Government to attract foreign investments to Mauritius.

The issues on the agenda of discussion were the Ocean Economy, the Africa Strategy, the Cyber City projects, the lCT, the Financial Services, Education, the Environment, the Climate Finance Access Hub and the Government 2015-2019 Programme, and the forthcoming accreditation of the High Commissioner to the Kingdom of Sweden, among others.

Photo taken during Courtesy Call by The High Commissioner, His Excellency Girish Nunkoo on Mr Jose Orive, Executive Director of the International Sugar Organisation on 9 February 2016.

 

AU Summit - PM announces that Mauritius will offer 50 Scholarships to African nationals

 

Procurement Plan for the Rehabilitation and Refurbishment of the London Chancery

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