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Brain Drain Alert: 5,000+ Young Mauritians Flee Abroad



Brain Drain Alert: 5,000+ Young Mauritians Flee Abroad
Image source: l'Express

The Mauritian economy is facing a pressing issue: the brain drain and labor shortage. While the government is recruiting foreign workers to fill the void, this short-term solution is not a sustainable answer. The country needs a long-term strategy to address the root causes of the problem.

In recent years, thousands of young Mauritians have left their homeland to pursue better opportunities in Canada, Australia, the UK, and France.

This exodus is fueled by a lack of recognition, nepotism, and limited career prospects in their home country.

The situation is exacerbated by a growing population of elderly people, making it essential for the government to respond swiftly and responsibly.

The statistics are alarming: in 2023, over 5,000 young Mauritians migrated to Canada, while many others have left for other countries.

The government’s Economic Development Board and the Ministry of Labor do not have a dedicated office to stop the exodus, and Statistics Mauritius does not track the number of emigrants.

The economic benefits of immigration are well-documented, with remittances from foreign workers exceeding investment in some countries.

However, Mauritius is not reaping the benefits of this global phenomenon. In 2023, Mauritian workers abroad sent Rs 742 million to their families, while foreign workers in Mauritius remitted Rs 2,829 billion to their families.

The government’s failure to address this issue has led to a severe labor shortage in various sectors, including agriculture, textiles, retail, and construction.

The situation is dire, with some companies relying on up to 33% of their staff from foreign countries.

The time has come for the government to adopt a comprehensive approach to address this dual problem.

This will require coordination with other countries to regulate the movement of workers and ensure fair rules between countries that provide and those that demand labor.

The International Labour Organization (ILO) has established a framework for Mode 4, aiming to facilitate the movement of workers while protecting their rights.

The upcoming Budget 2024-2025 will provide an opportunity for the government to take a decisive step towards addressing this issue.

Employers and citizens alike expect a clear direction and responsibility from the government. The solution cannot be a quick fix; it requires a long-term strategy that addresses the root causes of the brain drain and labor shortage.

Source: l’Express

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