Bilateral Relations between Mauritius and the People’s Republic of China SIGNATURE OF A BILATERAL VISA WAIVER AGREEMENT AND HOLDING OF THE FIRST WORKING SESSION OF THE POLITICAL CONSULTATION MECHANISM



Thursday 29th August, 2013, Port Louis: A Visa Waiver Agreement between Mauritius and China was signed today by Dr. the Hon. Arvin BOOLELL, Minister of Foreign Affairs, Regional Integration and International Trade, and H.E. Mr. ZHANG Ming, Assistant Minister of Foreign Affairs of China.

The Agreement provides for the exemption from visa requirement for a maximum of 30 days to citizens of Mauritius visiting China. However, citizens of either Party, who intend to study, work, reside or engage in media activities in the territory of the other party, should apply for visa before travelling. According to Minister Boolell, this is a landmark agreement, making Mauritius, after Seychelles, the second African country to have visa free travel to China for a stay of 30 days. It reflects a determination of both countries to elevate their bilateral relations, increase people-to-people connections and explore new areas of cooperation made easier by reducing the barriers to travel, such as tourism and business, the Minister added.

The visit of H.E. Zhang Ming to Mauritius, which also coincides with the inauguration of the new terminal at the Sir Seewoosagur Ramgoolam (SSR) International Airport, testifies to the importance that China attaches to its relations to Mauritius.It is recalled that on February 16th 2009, during the State Visit of H.E. President Hu Jintao of China, a Loan Agreement was signed for the funding, to the tune of a $260 million (approx. Rs 8 bn) of a passenger terminal at the SSR International Airport under a concessionary loan from the Export-Import Bank of China.The new state-of-art terminal augurs well for the increasing number of Chinese tourists visiting Mauritius, especially since Air Mauritius now offers 9 weekly flights to destinations in China, including Hong Kong.

Moreover, Ministers Boolell and Zhang co-chaired the first meeting of the Political Consultation Mechanism (PCM) between China and Mauritius. The two countries signed an MOU in January 2005 establishing the need and objectives of the PCM. This first meeting of the PCM offered both sides the opportunity to discuss a wide range of subjects focusing on bilateral relations and issues relating to the dynamic changes in the international political and economic landscape.

In this changing landscape, China, the second largest economy in the world, is increasingly acknowledged as a major player in view of its active engagement on almost every issue on the international agenda. For Minister Boolell, everyone marvels at the sustained economic growth that China has registered over the decade and which has now become an engine of growth of international trade.

The PCM meeting confirmed the shared understandings between the two sides on many issues.Minister Boolell stated that in keeping with the privileged relations that the two countries enjoy, Mauritius looks forward to the continued and trusted collaboration of China to supplement our efforts in translating our vision for a modern Mauritius into reality.

Posted by on Aug 29 2013. Filed under Economie. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0. You can leave a response or trackback to this entry

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