Mauritius Project

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Information about Mauritius Project
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Published on October 8, 2008

Author: aSGuest607

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Slide 1: 10/9/2008 1 PRESENTATION OF MAURITIUS PROJECT COMPLETED BY Judelle J ,Amanda K. Rohit Sharma, Chitainya Wavre EDITED BY Archana Chavan (Spicer Higher Secondary School) Slide 2: 10/9/2008 2 About Mauritius Mauritius is situated in the south-west of the Indian Ocean about 800 km east of Madagascar. Together with Reunion and Rodrigues it belongs to the Mascarene Islands. It has an area of 1.865 km ² and is densely populated with approx. 1.074 m. inhabitants. The island is of volcanic origin and mostly surrounded by coral-reefs. The national territory of Mauritius surrounds the islands Rodrigues, St. Brandon, Agalega-Islands and several smaller islands near the coast of Mauritius. Mauritius gained independence in 1968. The greatest economic importance has the sugar industry which can be clearly recognized while travelling over the country. The textile industry and the tourism are growing rapidly and are becoming more and more important for the economic development and the employment of the Mauritian. Slide 3: 10/9/2008 3 MAP Slide 4: 10/9/2008 4 Area: 1,865 sq. km. (720 sq. mi.), about the size of Rhode Island; 500 miles east of Madagascar, in the Indian Ocean. Dependencies: Rodrigues Island, the Agalega Islands and Cargados Carajos Shoals; Mauritius also claims sovereignty over the Chagos Archipelago, part of the British Indian Ocean Territory, where U.S. Naval Support Facility at Diego Garcia is located. Cities: Capital--Port Louis (pop. 146,319). Other cities--Beau Bassin and Rose Hill (105,377), Vacoas-Phoenix (101,789), Curepipe (82,756), Quatre Bornes (77,145). Terrain: Volcanic island surrounded by coral reefs. A central plateau is rimmed by mountains. Climate: Tropical; cyclone season mid-December-April. GEOGRAPHY Slide 5: 10/9/2008 5 The island of Mauritius itself is divided into nine districts: Black River (Capital: Bambous) Flacq (Capital: Centre de Flacq) Grand Port (Capital: Mahebourg) Moka (Capital: Quarter Militaries) Pamplemousses (Capital: Triolet) Plaines Wilhems (Capital: Rose Hill/ Cure pipe) Port Louis (Capital of Mauritius) Rivière du Rempart (Capital: Mapou) Savanne (Capital: Souillac) Slide 6: 10/9/2008 6 Nationality: Noun and adjective--Mauritian(s). Population (2008): 1,274,189, including Rodrigues, Agalega, and St. Brandon. Density--612/sq. km.Avg. annual population growth (2008): 0.8%. Ethnic groups: Indo-Mauritian 68%, Creoles 27%, Sino-Mauritians 3%, Franco-Mauritian 2%.Religions: Hindu 48%, Roman Catholic 23.6%, Muslim 16.6%, other Christian 8.6%, other 2.5%. Languages: Creole (common), French, English (official), Hindi, Urdu, Hakka, Bhojpuri. Education: Years compulsory--11 (primary school). Attendance (primary school)--virtually universal. Literacy--adult population 85%; school population 90%. Health (2008): Infant mortality rate--12.56/1000. Life expectancy--male 70.28 yrs., female 77.4 yrs. Work force (2005, 543,900): Manufacturing--19.8%; construction--9.7%; trade and tourism--22.3%; government services--16.6%; agriculture and fishing--9.6%; other--31.7%. People Slide 7: 10/9/2008 7 GDP (2007, official exchange rate) $6.959 billion.Real growth rate (2007): 4.6%.Per capita income (2007, purchasing power parity): $11,200.Avg. inflation rate (2007): 8.8%.Agriculture (4.8% of GDP): Products--sugar, sugar derivatives, tea, tobacco, vegetables, fruits, flowers and fishing. Manufacturing, including export processing zone (20% of GDP): Types--labor-intensive goods for export, including textiles and clothing, watches and clocks, jewelry, optical goods, toys and games, and cut flowers.Tourism sector (8.5% of GDP): Main countries of origin--France, including nearby French island Reunion, South Africa, and west European countries. Financial services: 10.3% of GDP. Trade (2007): Exports--$2.218 billion: textiles and clothing, sugar, canned tuna, watches and clocks, jewelry, optical goods, toys and games, and flowers. Major markets--Europe and the U.S. Imports--$3.628 billion: meat, dairy products, fish, wheat, rice, wheat flour, vegetable oil, petroleum products, iron and steel, cement, fertilizers, machinery and transport equipment, and textile industry raw materials. Major suppliers--South Africa, France, China, India, Bahrain, Finland, U.K., Japan, Australia, and Germany. Fiscal year: July 1-June 30. ECONOMY Slide 8: 10/9/2008 8 The Mauritian currency unit is the Rupee, denoted by the symbol Rs. Rs 1 = 100 cents. Currency Slide 9: 10/9/2008 9 Type: Republic. Independence: March 12, 1968 (became a republic in 1992). Constitution: March 12, 1968. Branches: Executive--president (head of state), prime minister (head of government), Council of Ministers. Legislative--unicameral National Assembly. Judicial- Supreme Court. Administrative subdivisions: 10. Major political parties: MSM (Militant Socialist Movement), MMM (Mauritian Militant Movement) and the Social Alliance (made up of several parties, including the Mauritian Labor Party). Suffrage: Universal over 18. Defense (2006): 1.7% of GDP. Government Slide 10: 10/9/2008 10 Mauritius is a parliamentary democracy similar in structure to the United Kingdom. The head of state of Mauritius is the President, who is elected for a five-year term by the National Assembly, the unicameral Maturation parliament. The National Assembly consists of 62 members elected directly by popular vote, with between four and eight further members appointed from "best losers" election candidates to represent ethnic minorities, if under represented after the elections. The prime minister and a council of ministers head the government. The Government is elected on a five-year basis. The most recent general elections took place on 3 July 2005 in all the 20 mainland constituencies, as well as the constituency covering the island of Rodrigues. In international affairs, Mauritius is part of the Indian Ocean Commission, the Southern African Development Community and the Commonwealth of Nations and La Francophone (French speaking countries) amongst others In 2006, Mauritius asked to be an observing member of Community of Portuguese Language Countries (CPLP) in order to become closer to those countries. Mauritius does not have a standing army but it does have a military structure (like Coast Guard officers) and does have security and police forces. Slide 11: 10/9/2008 11 Rodrigues, an island 560 kilometers north-east of Mauritius, which attained limited autonomy in October 2002.Had the status of the 10th administrative district of Mauritius before autonomy was attained. Agalega, two small islands about 933 kilometers (580 mi) north of Mauritius. Cargados Carajos Shoals, also known as the Saint Brandon islands, about 402 kilometers (250 mi) north of Mauritius. Other Martian territories: Soudan Banks (including East Soudan Bank) Nazareth Bank Saya de Malha Bank Hawkins Bank Mauritius also claims the following territories:[14] Tromelin Island, currently in French possession. Chagos Archipelago, currently a British possession as the British Indian Ocean Territory (BIOT). Dependencies: Slide 12: 10/9/2008 12 Natural Beauty Of Mauritius Slide 13: 10/9/2008 13 Slide 14: 10/9/2008 14 Slide 15: 10/9/2008 15 Slide 16: 10/9/2008 16 Slide 17: 10/9/2008 17 Slide 18: 10/9/2008 18 Slide 19: 10/9/2008 19 Slide 20: 10/9/2008 20 Over half the population of Mauritius is Hindu and roughly another fifth is Muslim; both groups descend from laborers brought to the island by the British to work the cane fields. The remaining population is composed mainly of Creoles, descendants of African slaves, and Franco-Mauritian, the original settlers of the island. English is the official language of the island, though you're bound to hear French, Creole (a mélange of French and various African dialects) and a smattering of Indian languages. The island's main contribution to the performing arts is the Creole séga, pronounced saygah,, a foot-shuffling, body-gyrating, downright erotic dance that's generally performed on the beach to the rhythm of Latin American, Caribbean and African pop. The Sega is a dance which originated from the ritual music of Madagascar and the mainland of Africa, and it is the Musical Expression of the Mauritian Way of Life: Joy, Carefree and Lively. CULTURE Slide 21: 10/9/2008 21 Originally sung by men and women who had been sold as slaves but whose souls had remained sensitive to music, the Sega is nowadays a folksong which has integrated itself within the framework of our folklore. It is a cry from the soul trying to transcend the miseries and heartaches of life, while at the same time expressing the universal human desire for joy and happiness. It tells the joys and sorrows of the peasants and the fishing folks. It is a nostalgic heritage of the villagers. Its beats, gripping in intensity, now provide entertainment to Mauritian of all walks of life in towns and villages. Today the Sega and its beat are a part of every Martian's life.One highlight of a visit to Mauritius is the magnificent mixture of cuisines on offer. The most common varieties are Creole, European, Chinese and Indian, with seafood almost always the specialty. Mauritian cuisine is a medley of these cuisines adapted for local availability of vegetables and meats. Slide 22: 10/9/2008 22 Mauritian have their own brand of music and dancing which is known as the Sega. It is believed to have come from Africa. It is a wild, sensual dance inherited from the slaves who expressed their feelings of sadness, fears, hopes and expectations in the form of song and movement. It is traditionally perfumed by pairs of the opposite sex. Slide 23: 10/9/2008 23 The cuisine of Mauritius is a blend of Creole, Chinese, European and Indian influences. It is common for a combination of cuisines to form part of the same meal. The "cari poule" or chicken curry, for example, is a very popular dish . Other common Mauritius dishes include the "dholl puri" (a type of bread, made from lentils) the "mine-frit" (Chinese fried noodle), and "niouk nien" (dumplings). A common Mauritius drink is "alouda", a milk-based drink containing basil seeds. The production of rum is widespread on the island. The Dutch first introduced sugarcane to Mauritius in 1638. The Dutch mainly cultivated sugarcane for the production of "arrack", a precursor to rum. However, it was during the French and British administrations that sugar production was fully exploited, which considerably contributed to the economical development of the island. Pierre Charles François Harrell was the first to propose the concept of local distillation of rum in Mauritius, in 1850. The Sega is local folklore music. Sega has African roots, and main traditional instruments for producing the music are goatskin percussion instruments called ravane and metallic clicks using metal triangles. The songs usually describe the miseries of slavery, and have been adapted nowadays as social satires to voice out inequalities as felt by the blacks. Men are usually at the instruments while women perform an accompanying dance. Shows are regularly hosted in the coastal hotels. Slide 24: 10/9/2008 24 Mauritius was the only known habitat of the extinct Dodo bird. In 1847, Mauritius became the fifth country in the world to issue postage stamps. The two types of stamps issued then, known as the Mauritius "Post Office" stamps, consisting of a Red Penny and Blue Two Pence denomination, are probably the most famous and valuable stamps in the world. When discovered, the island of Mauritius was home to a previously unknown species of bird, which the Portuguese named the dodo (simpleton), as they appeared not too bright. However, by 1681, all dodos had been killed by settlers or their domesticated animals. An alternate theory suggests that the imported wild boar destroyed the slow breeding dodo population. Nevertheless, the dodo is prominently featured as a supporter of the national coat-of-arms . The island has also given rise to a diversified literature, prominent in French, English, and Creole. Slide 25: 10/9/2008 25 The mixture of the island’s various races is reflected in the Mauritian cuisine: spicy curries, tropical fruits and vegetables, Chinese and European food. The bryani Mauritian-style can be quite remote from the Pakistani original. Unlike Indian curries, the Mauritian curry uses fresh tomatoes. If sea foods are a favorite of yours, then don't forget to treat yourself to the "Millionaire's salad" of oysters, shrimps, crayfish, crabs, Rosenbergi prawns, served with "sauce rouge" and the heart of a palm tree. FOOD Slide 26: 10/9/2008 26 Festivals Chinese New year This is a New Year’s Day and spring-cleaning combined. The festival begins on the eve of the Chinese New Year with an explosion of fire crackers to chase away evil spirits. New Year’s Day is in January or February and does not fall on the same day every year due to the irregularity of the lunar month. Slide 27: 10/9/2008 27 · MAHA SHIVARATREE The Great Night of Shiva is a solemn occasion for Hindus which begins with a night-long vigil in worship of the God Shiva. The following day, devotees dressed in pure white carry the Kanwar, a wooden arch decorated with flowers, paper and tiny mirrors, in procession to Grand Bassin. This lake is in the Savanne district, about five kilometers by motor able road from the Mare aux Vacoas reservoir. The lake is holy to Hindus who carry water from it home to their own temples. Poojas (worship with food) are celebrated that night in the temples dotting the banks of the lake, the air heavy with the sweet smell of burning incense sticks and reverberating with prayers broadcast from loudspeakers. This is reputed to be the largest Hindu festival celebrated outside India and is reminiscent of the great rituals on the banks of the holy Ganges. Worshippers believe the lights they launch on the lake on banana leaves and their offerings of flowers will float somehow to the Ganges. Slide 28: 10/9/2008 28 HOLI A happy time for Hindus when greetings are exchanged and revelry erupts with the squirting of colored water and the spraying of colored powder on one another, and on everyone else the revellers come across. A noisy and cheerful festival. Slide 29: 10/9/2008 29 The official language of Mauritius is English. All government administrative documents are therefore drawn up in English. Together with English, French is also used in instruction in the educational system. French, however, predominates in the media, both broadcast and printed as well as with business and in corporate affairs. The most widely-spoken language of the country is Mauritian Creole, which has close ties with French pronunciation, but with a few marked differences. Mauritian Creole is considered the native tongue of the country. Hindi and Urdu also have numerous speakers in the country, although both are used mainly in the Indo-Mauritian community. Several other languages including Tamil, Telugu, Marathi, Bhojpuri, Gujarati, Punjabi and dialects of Chinese, such as Cantonese, Hakka and Mandarin, are also spoken by significant parts of the population. Arabic is also taught in Mosques around Mauritius. LANGUAGES & RELIGION The largest religions present in the republic are Hinduism (48%), Roman Catholicism (23.6%), Islam (16.6%), and other Christian denominations (8.6%); followers of other faiths totaled 2.5%.[20] Slide 30: 10/9/2008 30 ANIMALS Many of these creatures shared the same fate as the dodo. The gigantic turtle-like bird, with a hard twisted beak and tiny wings had never experienced danger. It had forgotten how to fly and made easy prey for the first Dutch settlers. Within a few years it was wiped off the face of the earth. The only indigenous mammals of Mauritius were two species of fruit bat, one of which is now extinct and three species of insectivorous bats. A cousin, the Rodrigues fruit bat was until recently also threatened with extinction. A successful colony now exists at the government Aviaries at Black River. The Mauritius Golden Bat or flying fox is more common. It swoops over highland forests at nightfall in search of fruit. The deep was introduced from Java in 1639 to supply meat to the first settlers. Deer farming is well established in the Case Noyale and Le Morne areas. Less timid deer can be seen in the enclosure at Pamplemousses Gardens Slide 31: 10/9/2008 31 The model of the Dodo as shown below is not real, as there are no complete Dodo specimens. Some of the birds may have been eaten by the Dutch sailors who discovered them. However, the primary causes of their extinction were the destruction of the forest (which cut off the Dodo’s food supply), and the animals that the sailors brought with them, including cats, rats, and pigs, which destroyed the Dodo nests. The dodo once waddled along the deserted beaches of Mauritius blissfully unaware than when man arrived in the sixteenth century he would shake the harmony of its existence. The Dodo was first sighted around 1600 on Mauritius and it was extinct less than eighty years later. The skeleton as shown below is on view in the Museum and is real. · Myth of the fat Dodo Slide 32: 10/9/2008 32 FISHES Mauritius is almost completely encircled by one of the world’s finest coral reefs. Through millions of years this beautiful cluster of calciferous polyps has built upon a precarious foothold on the shallow sea bed near shore to form a veritable underwater world - a vast world in which thousands of marine species live, eat, work and die allowing the whole universe to proliferate. A coral reef can only exist in sea water so at river estuaries and at the sea’s surface it perishes. As the great ocean waves break upon its extremities a translucent white pencil-thin white line divides the deep blue of the Indian Ocean from the iridescent green of the lagoon. It is this phenomenon occurring at distances varying from nothing to a few kilometers from the shore which is the unfailing characteristic of a real tropical island. Slide 33: 10/9/2008 33 HISTORY & GEOGRAPHY Pre-20th-Century History Arab traders knew of Mauritius as early as the 10th century but never stopped to settle it. Portuguese naval explorers later stumbled upon the island in the wake of Vasco de Gama's voyage around the Cape of Good Hope in 1498. Apart from introducing pesky monkeys and rats, the Portuguese did little to influence the place. This was left to the next wave of immigrants, the Dutch. In 1598, Vice Admiral Wybrandt van Warwick came ashore and claimed the island for the Netherlands, christening it after his ruler, Maurice, Prince of Orange and Count of Nassau. It was another 40 years before the Dutch began to settle the country, preferring instead to use it as a supply base on the route to Java. The colony never really flourished, and the Dutch departed for good in 1710, leaving in their wake the extinction of the dodo and the introduction of African slaves, Javan deer, wild boar, tobacco and sugar cane. Slide 34: 10/9/2008 34 Modern History While Franco-Mauritian plantations supported some wealthy sugar barons (as they do today), Indian workers continued to be indentured by the thousands. Through strength of numbers, Indians gradually bolstered their say in the country's management, aided in 1901 by a visit from Mahatma Gandhi. In 1936, the Labor Party was founded to continue the struggle for laborers' rights. The following year, their burden was lightened by a new constitution granting the vote to anyone over 21 who could sign their name. Under the direction of Dr Seewoosagur Ramgoolam (who was later knighted), membership swelled and the party flourished. Slide 35: 10/9/2008 35 Recent History In 1999, tensions between the Creole population and the Indo-Mauritian majority exploded. Popular reggae singer Joseph 'Kaya' Topize was arrested during a rally to legalise marijuana and died of a skull fracture while in police custody. Riots broke out across the island, particularly in Port Louis. A Chikungunya epidemic, which afflicted many countries across the Indian Ocean, resulted in a sharp drop in hotel reservations and visitor numbers in 2005-06. Numbers bounced back by the end of 2006, and although Chikungunya is still present in Mauritius, it's no longer an epidemic. On the political front, Paul Bérenger became the country's first non-Indian prime minister in 2003. It was short-lived, however - Navinchandra Ramgoolam, son of Seewoosagur Ramgoolam, took over in July 2005. With its traditional industries of sugar, tea, tobacco and textiles at the end of a long decline, Mauritius is in the process of reorienting itself towards IT, banking and tourism to ensure its long-term economic viability Slide 36: 10/9/2008 36 Situated in the Indian Ocean approximately 560 miles east of Madagascar, Mauritius is a volcanic island with large rocky peaks almost completely surrounded by coral reef, an exotic composition that yields beautiful views both above and beneath the water. Considered the quintessential tropical paradise, Mauritius invites visitors to experience crystal-clear lagoons that flow into silky beaches dotted with casuarinas and coconut palm trees. Higher up, waterfalls cascade over the ancient volcanic rock – perfect for a post-hike dip, or a memorable holiday snapshot. A unique combination of natural elements, Mauritius is also a fusion of cultures with Indian, French, African, Asian and British influences. This amazing diversity is apparent not only in the island’s architecture and people, but also in the variety of exceptional cuisine. Many marvelous five- and six-star resorts are located on the island and thus, competition has bred even better quality, service, and amenities. With its breathtaking views and posh resorts, Mauritius is a romantic hideaway perfect for tropical weddings, honeymoons, or anniversary celebrations. Or, visitors can take advantage of the resorts’ fantastic kids clubs for family vacations to remember. Slide 37: 10/9/2008 37 Slide 38: 10/9/2008 38 Slide 39: 10/9/2008 39

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