And the countdown to Budget 2014 beginsâ€¦
So, what would give Mauritians cause for joy when Budget 2014 is read in the afternoon session today? (Image:business.mega.mu)
With a few hours to go for Budget 2014, letâ€™s do a roundup of the main issues that the people of Mauritius expect the government to address through this key financial document. So, what would give Mauritians cause for joy when the Budget is read in the afternoon session today?
According to a comprehensive survey conducted by DCDM Research, the four key priority directions that are expected from Budget 2014 are impacts on purchasing power, employment, education and poverty.
First and foremost, Mauritians expect Budget 2014 to restore their purchasing power through a possible drop in prices. This expectation is higher among those aged 35-44, those part of the general population with average income levels, those living with a partner and those who say they currently have no personal income.
Apart from high prices, lack of employment and paucity of educational avenues tie at second position as the next contentious areas for the respondents. Those who are most likely to be affected by an increase in job opportunities are those aged 18-24, those currently unemployed and students. On the education front, parents and students alike expressed the hope that todayâ€™s budget will give a positive thrust to education and training.
Moving on, the opinion of the island nation on the performance of key sectors of the country is mixed. While most believed that public infrastructure is developing along expected lines, a majority feel that social problems are not being managed well, and, more importantly, express concerns about the future of the island economy. Most of those who expressed alarm over the growth of the economy were MMM supporters.
Even as 70% of the respondents expressed satisfaction with their current standard of living, the over-arching theme was that of austerity.
A whopping 95% said they were very careful about their spending, 66% said they could not allow for a major expense from their current income while around 62% said they were relatively optimistic about future improvement in standards of living basis the directives of the upcoming budget.
Most of those who were dissatisfied with their current standard of living hailed from the 45-54 age group, were part of the general population with average income levels, and were married / in a relationship.
The Barometer DCDM Research incorporated views of 600 respondents aged 18 years and older residing in private households in Mauritius vide telephone survey conducted daily for 2 months, from 02 September to 28 October 2013.
Source: DCDM Research