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AfricaMoney | August 22, 2017

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Mauritius’ Urban Authorities Association searches alternatives to trade fees hike

Mauritius’ Urban Authorities Association searches alternatives to trade fees hike

However, the City Council of Port Louis is refusing to reconsider its stance on the upward revision of trade fees even as it is in process of studying possible alternatives to bring it down. (Image: Mauritius Attractions)

The Association of Urban Authorities has set up a committee composed of financial experts to establish if a lowering of trade fees is possible.

A meeting was held at Rosehill yesterday, comprising representatives of each city hall, financials controllers as well as Chief Health Inspectors with the objective of considering the finances of municipalities to find out if a reduction in figures is possible.

To begin with, the committee will release its verdict in about 10 days to the magistrates of the cities who will subsequently, if necessary, will send the new figures to the local government administration.

Secondly, the committee will propose solutions to the Urban Authorities to improve their financial efficiency and in the process, lower the budgetary deficit.

However, the City Council of Port Louis is refusing to reconsider its stance on the upward revision of trade fees even as it is in process of studying possible alternatives to bring it down.

The ‘Front Commun des Commerçants de Ile Maurice’ (FCCIM) or ‘Common Front of Traders of Mauritius’, which issued an appeal to Municipalities to lower the trade fees is awaiting revert, and has expressed hope in the meantime that the charges will be revised downwards.

Raj Appadu, President of FCCIM noted that authorized economic operators will be forced to pay the full price while those who are illegally selling products, mainly peddlers, continue to operate without being afraid of the authorities.

While the economic operators have already made their payment for the year, the FCCIM considers that it is not too late for the local authorities to reverse their position.

Meanwhile, earlier this month, the Association des Hôteliers et Restaurateurs de l’île Maurice (AHRIM), representing the interests of hotel and restaurant owners in Mauritius, had filed a case in the Supreme Court against the increase in trade fees.

According to the AHRIM, both the association and its members should have been consulted so that the opportunity is granted to them to voice their suggestions and to be heard by the authorities.

The next hearing of the case is scheduled for February 24.

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