Mauritius Profile

The island of Mauritius, part of the Mascarene Islands off the southeast coast of Madagascar, has been known since at least the tenth century, however formal recordings of its exploration were made by Portuguese explorers in the sixteenth century. It was settled by the Dutch in the following century and named in honour of Prince Maurtis. It came under British rule during the Napoleonic Wars and its strategic location made it an important naval and air base. In 1968, as part of the process of granting independence to former African colonies, Mauritius became independent from the UK in 1968 and in 1992 became the Republic of Mauritius. Since that time, it has maintained a stable democracy.

Today Mauritius, with its population of some 1,284,264, is seen as an ideal tourist attraction as well as having growing financial and industrial sectors. However this rise in economic growth has seen many turn to industrialisation for employment creating family strains, addictions and increases in crime. Despite the overall wealth, for many living in Mauritius life is one of poverty, often going to bed hungry without having basic needs met particularly in the neglected rural regions of Mauritius and on the island of Rodrigues.

Even those in more urban areas have seen levels of poverty increase following the recent world financial crisis as, in addition to tourism, the economy mainly depends on exports of textiles to Europe and the United States.

UNICEF report "Pockets of poverty remain, and child abuse and violence against women, sexual exploitation, increasing drug and alcohol dependency among young people and the exclusion of children with disabilities all are cause of concern."

It is a little known fact that Mauritius was the only home to the now extinct Dodo, and, in typical European style, within eighty years of Europeans discovering the island and the Dodo, it had become extinct being unable to fly or walk away from the colonisers with the required haste to maintain its safety. The tourist video above provides an insight into the island and life there.


Mauritius Profile

Mauritius Profile

Mauritius Profile

Mauritius Profile



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Mauritius ProfileHuman Development Index Mauritius

Human Development Index for Mauritius 1980 - Present

The HDI (Human Development Index) is measured by the UNESCO Institute for Statistics (UIS) and the World Bank and is based upon the life expectancy, literacy, access to knowledge and living standards of a country. Mauritius is in 80th place out of 186 countries and territories in 2013 and the chart above shows that Mauritius is above average human development and towards high human development.


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