About the Metro Leger, Productivity & IT sector

I wish to congratulate my friend Mrinal Roy for his courageous ‘plaidoyer’ with facts for the new government to rethink on the ‘Metro Léger’.

I believe the metro is long overdue and it would have cost much less had the previous governments decided for it much earlier. We are soliciting the help of the Indian government to improve the water system. I do not dispute the fact that our water system badly needs re-engineering but I do not believe that India has the answer in this field.

Go to India today not only Delhi but even small towns comparable to Mauritius have opted for the metro. India has fully understood the immense benefits they can derive in terms of better and rapid communications, pollution free as my friend has mentioned in his article.

Depreciating the rupee

Why depreciate the rupee when the euro is falling? Is it to earn more rupees on our exports? On the other hand such an exercise would definitely lead towards a US dollar at Rs35 or more. Our imports are mainly paid in US dollars so the consumers will be very severely penalised – the price of foodstuffs will shoot up and even those who are pleading for the depreciation will feel the pinch as raw materials, machinery and petroleum products are paid in US dollars.

The government should make an increase in productivity their norm at all levels – whether in the private sector or the public sector. Working longer hours does not necessarily lead to higher productivity; what is important is output per man.

Make the Productivity institution set up for enhancing productivity nationally show concrete results – this authority so vital for the economy seems to be in deep slumber.

As for the IT sector, they have no choice than to upgrade their services otherwise they will soon be overtaken by Madagascar. Their hope resides in value added services. We have to learn from India which is today innovating and providing very high value services. Why not recruit Indian professionals? But these professionals will only come here if salaries go up. Even highly qualified Mauritian IT professionals might be tempted to come back but for the beggar salaries that do not offer any incentives to do so.

* Published in print edition on 23 January  2015

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