Rezistans ek Alternativ (ReA) held a press conference on Saturday November 18, during which members of the eco-socialist political party address the deterioration of the standard of living and the enrichment of a small handful of people. Present in the conference Ashok Subron, Dany Marie, Michel Chiffonne and David Sauvage. Three Proposals were made.
Ashok Subron, who was in charge of speaking at this press conference, pointed out that Mauritius is facing a double phenomenon, the enrichment of a minority of the population and the relative impoverishment of the large majority. Rezistans ek Alternativ(ReA) calls for immediate action.
“Much of its miraculous profits that we see is the result of the depreciation of the rupee. According to the official figures of the Bank of Mauritius, we have had a very pronounced depreciation because since 2019, the rupee has depressed by 24% against other currencies.”
Private companies demonstrate enormous profitability and companies that are in the big conglomerations, the banking and financial sectors are exorbitant. It is important to know where its exorbitant profits come from and those who are bleeding white, outline Ashok Subron.
“If the depreciation has increased the profits of the big conglomerates, we can say that it has contributed to the impoverishment of Mauritians. Based on the data, the onset of inflation coincides with the depreciation of the rupees for the past three years.”
It’s all part of an economic model that relies on cheap labor, but also on the colonization of the rich, says Subron. As a reminder, today, the main growth of the economy in Mauritius comes from real estate. ReA proposes three immediate measures to address the problem of living conditions and to lay the groundwork for the structural transformations needed in the years to come. First, the eco-socialist Party proposes that an allowance of Rs 2,000 should be incorporated into the salary income of employees earning less than Rs 25,000. According to the party, this measure should come into force by January 2024.
“It is important to integrate this allowance of Rs 2000 into the basic allowance of those earning less than Rs 25,000 per month and Rs 1000 for those earning less than Rs 50,000 per month to temporarily and immediately alleviate the effects of inflation on the working class.”
In addition, he points out that 50% of this allowance will have to be paid by the employer and the other by the Mauritius Revenue Authority through a levy imposed on large conglomerates massively subsidized by the State.
The second proposal concerns household debt, which has been increasing over the past few years. The repayment of debts and the interest rate of Mauritian families to increase drastically and Rezistans ek Alternativ demands that we bring the interest rate of households back to the level it was one month before Covid-19. A measure that will relieve Mauritian households, in terms of repaying their debts to the various banks on the island. This measure is intended to serve the well-being of the population, declares the spokesman of ReA.
“It is not possible for the bank to make any profit at the expense of the working class. It is important to have measures that are in the interest of the population. An economy cannot function to serve of a small handful of people. An economy must take care of the needs of the masses.”
Finally, ReA proposes a third measure that aims to “initiate a change in the development model in the country. It is proposed to set up a system to ensure that all fish caught in Mauritian territorial waters are offered for sale on the local market at a fixed price.”
This is a very important change as it will ensure food security and sufficiency for the Mauritian population in this unprecedented period in which we have been for the past 3 years.
“For the last 10 years, boats have been plundering Mauritian territorial waters for money, but in the end, it really doesn’t bring anything in terms of nutrition for the population.”
Indeed, most, if not the vast majority, of the fish caught are exported and sold abroad without Mauritians being able to benefit from them. This is why ReA is calling for fish caught in Mauritian waters to be sold locally.
Watch the conference here: