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Mauritius, a country of choice for higher education

For South Africans and prospective students from anywhere else in the world, the learning environment matters as much as the quality of education provided, which makes Mauritius a hotspot when it comes to choosing a place to pave the stepping stones for a future career.

An increasing number of young South Africans are looking to find out more about higher education options in Mauritius. What are the facilities available? Are Mauritian qualifications recognised worldwide? How accessible is the country as a destination for tertiary education? To answer these questions and more, we have put together a comprehensive article with relevant information that will hopefully support decision-making and possibly make Mauritius a consideration for your children’s higher education.

Until early 2020, this sector in Mauritius was governed by the Tertiary Education Commission (TEC), which has since been replaced by the Higher Education Commission (HEC) and the Quality Assurance Authority (QAA). This decision is in line with the Government’s strategy to expand the country’s capacity to accommodate both local and international students and become a regional hub for quality higher education, which is of utmost importance.

Quality public tertiary education

The now 55-year-old University of Mauritius was the pioneer in the field and since then, many other institutions have emerged in the country, which currently counts 15 public and 50 private tertiary-level establishments.

With around 12,000 undergraduate, postgraduate and doctorate students, the University of Mauritius delivers international-standard programmes. The institution has 5 faculties, including the Faculties of Agriculture, Engineering, Law and Management, Science and Social Studies and Humanities, as well as the Centre of Information Technology and Systems, the Virtual Centre for Innovative Learning Technologies and the Centre for Professional Development and Lifelong Learning.

The University of Mauritius is an averagely selective institution with an admission rate range of 70-80% for locals. The acceptance of international students is based on academic performance with yearly tuition fees ranging from US$5,000 to US$7,500. Though it does not fare as well as the top South African universities, it has been moving up the international rankings in recent years to just over 2,000th in the world. Certain degrees are also offered as dual qualifications in collaboration with the University of Arizona (104th in the Times Higher Education University Rankings), at an approximate cost of US$11,000.

The University Of Technology, Mauritius is another public institution that is attracting increasing numbers of overseas students. It offers undergraduate programmes in the following Schools: Business, Management and Finance; Innovative Technologies and Engineering; Sustainable Development and Tourism & Health Sciences.

The country’s first ISO 9001:2015 certified higher education institution, the Open University of Mauritius attracts more than 5,000 students yearly and offers qualifications ranging from short employability courses to doctorate programmes. The university has also established partnerships with international institutions like the University of South Africa, Imperial College London, the University of Chandigarh, and the University of San Diego, California.

A diversity of private institutions

Private tertiary education in Mauritius is currently provided by 50 different institutions. The sector has grown exponentially in recent years, with a number of well-respected institutions establishing branches in the country. Most of them offer undergraduate and postgraduate programmes through both distance learning and face-to-face lectures across various fields of study including management, accounting, medical education, dentistry and IT.

Among the most popular ones with foreign students seeking to obtain an internationally recognised degree are Middlesex University Mauritius in Flic en Flac and Curtin Mauritius on the Charles Telfair Campus in Moka Smart City. Both institutions are well established and are attracting increasing numbers of learners from abroad.

The Mauritian campus enjoys full accreditation by Middlesex University, UK, which is placed in the 401-500 bracket by The Times Higher Education World University Rankings. To compare with some of South Africa’s leading tertiary-level institutions, Stellenbosch University is in the 251-300 bracket and the University of Pretoria is in the 601-800 bracket.

Established in 2009, Middlesex University Mauritius is one of the 140-year-old British institutions’ three campuses outside of London. A broad range of undergraduate courses are supported by various postgraduate options. The first British university to open in the country also offers on-site accommodation on the west coast of the island, within minutes of the beach. Additionally, there is a wide range of apartment options for rental within close proximity to the campus.

Moka, a very popular area

A leading global higher education provider, Curtin University of Australia ranks in the same bracket as Stellenbosch University in The Times Higher Education World University Rankings, i.e. in the top 1% of global universities. It is also placed 55th in the world by Times in the “Young University Ranking” index for 2019.

Curtin Mauritius is one of six campuses, with others in Australia (Perth & Kalgoorlie), Singapore, Malaysia & Dubai in operation. It is situated in the heart of Moka Smart City, a centrally located, vibrant mixed-use development spearheaded by ENL Property. Sitting just outside the main commercial hub of the island, the area is highly sought after by the younger, professional segments of society as well as students.

Even though no on-campus student residences per se are available yet, there are apartments for sale in the neighbouring residential area of Les Promenades d’Helvétia starting from approximately ZAR1.7m for a one-bedroom studio. Rental is also possible from ZAR10k per month within walking/cycling distance to the university, with a direct link to the city’s Promenade. Moreover, there are various cultural and sporting events throughout the year and all of the daily conveniences, including a sports centre, a shopping centre, medical facilities and an open-air amphitheatre are within easy reach.

For both universities, tuition fees may vary depending on the programme of study and to a lesser extent, the institution. A standard undergraduate degree would cost around MUR200-300k a year (US$5-7.5k).

Taking into consideration accommodation and general cost of living (food, transport, entertainment, etc.), this education fee should be just over doubled – so it would probably be best to budget about US$14-16,000 (ZAR250,000-300,000) a year all included. Comparatively, while this is 30-40% higher than a local university in South Africa, it is only approximately half the cost of sending one’s child to Perth or the UK for instance. Mauritius also remains the most accessible international higher education destination for South Africans with multiple daily, four-hour flights.

Student-friendly environment

If one is looking to pursue higher education in Mauritius, here are some further more general insights;

University education in Mauritius is mainly delivered in English but a small number of modules may be taught in French – thus it is advisable to double-check before enrolling. The academic year for public universities generally opens in July-August with two semesters of approximately 15 weeks. Some private institutions like Curtin Mauritius also have a February intake.

The rules and regulations laid out by the Passport and Immigration Office and the Ministry of Labour, Industrial Relations and Employment allow foreigners with a student visa valid for at least one year to work part-time for up to 20 hours per week.  So students can supplement their income through part-time work.  Some universities will make the necessary visa and residence permit arrangements for their international students.

But if not, the application process remains simple with guidance from the relevant institutions. International students must provide evidence of adequate funds to meet the costs of stay and studies. Within one month of arrival, they are also requested to undergo a medical examination and produce a certificate from a registered local practitioner stating that they are not suffering from HIV, hepatitis B, heart disease or chest infection.

Moreover, most institutions will have their students covered by a medical insurance; some parents may however opt for a top-up cover. Foreign students also have free access to the public healthcare system.

Global education experience

Some private institutions like Middlesex University Mauritius and Curtin Mauritius provide a ‘global education’ experience by offering exchange opportunities. Following completion of their first year, students can spend their second or third year at one of these universities’ counterpart campuses around the world.

In terms of extracurricular experiences, the newer, private institutions of Mauritius don’t (yet) offer what the traditional universities in South Africa do from a ‘student life’ perspective. It is therefore important to know that the holistic student experience may not be comparable to the likes of a Stellenbosch or Tukkies currently or of the past – but things are moving quite fast with regard to campus life and the student experience.

So although this may be a downside, it will hopefully be outweighed by the advantages of studying in Mauritius, such as student safety and security, internationally recognised qualifications, access to further studies abroad and having a tropical island as an outdoor playground.

CategoriesDid you know? Editor's Picks

Smarter waste management in Moka

Responsible waste management is a key issue for any smart city development and Moka is taking a proactive approach to reduce its environmental footprint.

Moka Smart City is continuing its green efforts with the implementation of a selective waste collection programme within its first residential development, Les Promenades d’Helvétia. Alongside this initiative, semi-buried collectors strategically located around the city will serve as public drop-off points, boosting the efficiency and eco-friendliness of the waste management program.

Each apartment block of Les Promenades d’Helvétia will be equipped with selective colour-coded sorting bins: green for organic waste, yellow for recyclables like plastic, aluminium, paper and cardboard, and red for those items that cannot be recycled.

For optimal efficiency, households can use multi-compartment bins to separate their waste at the source –in their kitchen. They can buy one from their preferred store or from kitchen specialists such as Unique Concept or Schmidt.

Specific waste itineraries

The refuse collection service of the Moka District Council will pick up non-recyclable waste once a week and recyclable dry waste fortnightly. The frequency for organic waste will be determined shortly.

After selective collection, each type of waste will be routed to the suitable treatment channel. Organic waste will be turned into compost whereas recyclable products such as plastic and aluminium will be sorted by Green Ltd before being transformed or exported. The same channel as for general waste will be used for non-recyclable materials, i.e. they will be sent to the Mare Chicose landfill.

Waste sorting and recycling offer various advantages, including halving the amount of waste going to landfills. They improve households’ compliance with sustainable development principles, with significant economic benefits for all. The collection and transformation of waste help preserve the environment and promote the development of a circular economy based on the “three Rs”: Reduce, Reuse and Recycle. They also contribute to creating sustainable jobs.

A clean, safe and cost-effective solution

This responsible waste management extends beyond Les Promenades d’Helvétia. Moloks, semi-buried waste collectors, will soon be available as voluntary drop-off receptacles at Vivéa Business Park, Helvetia (in front of Synergy Sport & Wellness Institute), Courchamps and Telfair.

The containers to be installed in Moka are designed for the disposal of dry waste, including paper, cardboard, plastic, aluminium cans and glass. Here again, Green Ltd will be the supplier and will take care of collection.

There is a specific recycling stream for each type of waste. Plastics are either transformed and reused locally or exported by companies like Polypet Recyclers Ltd, Surfrider Ltd and WeCycle Ltd. The latter also processes and exports some of the paper and cardboard collected. Metal is sent abroad while glass is recycled locally by Green Ltd to find a second life in construction.

The Molok waste management system is a clean, safe and cost-effective solution for responsible and eco-friendly waste collection. It ensures efficient and safe emptying for both users and collectors, with a space-saving vertical design. The lower temperature underground helps minimize odours while gravity improves compaction for an increased collection capacity.

Moka Smart City has set up this initiative to make a tangible contribution towards a sustainable development by promoting better waste management practices among its citizens!

CategoriesEditor's Picks Real Estate

Home automation: Smart solutions for smart living

In this hyperconnected world, the integration of technology into everyday objects improves the comfort and safety of our homes while helping save money.

Who wouldn’t want to live in a smart home? A connected home that has the flexibly to adapt to the lifestyle of its occupants from wake-up to bedtime? One that you can control single-handedly, that anticipates your habits, ensures your safety, protects your belongings and even generates savings?

Home automation brings cutting-edge technology to your home. It uses sensors, actuators and controllers connected to a central unit to allow you to manage your home from anywhere at all times.


This concept adds an extra dimension to your peace of mind, especially when it comes to monitoring and protecting your home. You can remotely manage your security system and know what’s going on in real time on your mobile device. You are also immediately notified in case of problem to avoid any unpleasant surprises when you return home.

Remote control

There is a variety of comprehensive solutions that enable you to easily control your lighting and other household appliances from anywhere in the world. For example, you can adjust light intensity, switch lights on or off, set the temperature of your air conditioning system or refrigerator, manage the opening or closing of your electric shutters, or even turn on other appliances. It only takes a mouse click or a finger swipe across the touch screen of your tablet or smartphone!

Savings and positive environmental impact

Moreover, you can take control of your power bill through smart management and monitoring of all these systems. With home automation, you will save big on your energy consumption while making an effective contribution to environment protection.

Personalised entertainment

Home automation also creates pleasant moments of relaxation and entertainment. It helps enhance and personalise your experience: you can wake up to your favourite music or radio and continue listening in the shower or in the kitchen, and fully enjoy your TV, gaming console and laptop, among others.

Helvetia’s home automation packages

Besides making your living space smart and adding convenience to your daily routine, such solutions are likely to raise the value of your property and stimulate greater interest in potential buyers. Additionally, home automation can earn you a better return on investment on resale.

CategoriesEditor's Picks Things to do

Moka, an active city

Sport has been a major focus in Moka for a long time. The smart city offers residents a broad range of opportunities to enhance their work-life balance through participating in sporting activities in a safe and appealing environment. From tennis courts and a swimming pool to archery, karate and indoor soccer, everything you need is within reach – as well as top-notch sporting events.

Moka Trail, a must for trail enthusiasts

The 7th edition of the Moka Trail was held on 5 October 2019. This event launched in 2013 has become an essential activity for all trail lovers. Despite the rainy weather, there was a friendly atmosphere; participants were twice as cheerful as last year, showing greater solidarity and sportsmanship.

Racing to the power of 7

For this seventh year, the distances for all four races, including two new ones, were in multiples of 7. In addition to the Petit Both (14km) and Grand Pouce (28km), there were the Deux Mamelles (7km) and Kids Fun Run (3.5 km). That race for children aged 6 to 11 gave families looking for some quality time together the opportunity to take a wonderful stroll together.

The Moka Trail is a growing success attracting an increasing number of enthusiasts every year. This year’s edition set a new record of 2,325 participants. This event is a chance to live a unique experience along beautiful trails amid breathtaking scenery in the heart of the island.

An unforgettable experience

For this seventh year, the distances for all four races, including two new ones, were in multiples of 7. In addition to the Petit Both (14km) and Grand Pouce (28km), there were the Deux Mamelles (7km) and Kids Fun Run (3.5 km). That race for children aged 6 to 11 gave families looking for some quality time together the opportunity to take a wonderful stroll together.

The Moka Trail is a growing success attracting an increasing number of enthusiasts every year. This year’s edition set a new record of 2,325 participants. This event is a chance to live a unique experience along beautiful trails amid breathtaking scenery in the heart of the island.

All participants were rewarded with a free sports session and health check-up at Synergy Sport & Wellness Institute to encourage them to take part in regular sports activities, which make an important contribution to Moka Smart City, developed by the ENL Group.

The Moka Trail powerfully embodies the city’s values through its warm and welcoming atmosphere as well as a focus on the environment. It is also an opportunity to challenge oneself amid a lush, beautiful landscape… that’s what the Moka Trail is all about!

Dominic Dupont, ENL Property, investissement residentiel, residential property
CategoriesEditor's Picks Investment Real Estate

“We use our know-how to contribute to sustainable development in Mauritius”

Dominic Dupont explains how ENL Property, a leading property player in Mauritius, draws on the expertise and experience gained in the luxury residential property market to develop the Moka Smart City as an integrated, high-quality project that is consistent with sustainable development efforts.

Dominic Dupont, ENL Property, investissement residentiel, residential property

How is the luxury property market doing in Mauritius?

The residential property segment continues to expand with a significant increase of foreign direct investment (FDI) to Rs 8.895 billion in 2018. The sector continues to concentrate a large part of FDI inflows, thus contributing to boost the country’s economy. There is a growing demand, especially from Europe and South Africa, and the property market in Mauritius has considerably diversified over time.

What is your view on the development of the market since the opening up of property ownership to foreigners?

There has been a boost in foreign investment in the Mauritian market due to the combination of a broad offering, a very good quality of life and an attractive set of measures, such as access to the Mauritian residence permit and tax incentives. The residential property segment has evolved to address the rising expectations of clients, who are now more knowledgeable about the destination and the market. The latter, which initially consisted predominantly of seaside property developments, has expanded into more urban areas, including apartments, with the passing of the Non-Citizen (Property Restriction) Act and the launch of the Smart City Scheme in 2016.

The ENL Group has also broadened its offering, isn’t it?

Our foray into the luxury property segment through Heritage Villas Valriche and La Balise Marina has actually enabled us to enhance our service standards. These two IRS developments have reached a certain level of maturity – La Balise Marina is in its final phase. Over the years, we ourselves have gained a lot of maturity and honed our knowledge of the market and of specific client requirements. In addition, we have strengthened existing relationships with the relevant authorities, which are essential for the smooth running of such large-scale projects. We also remain attentive to the market and to our partners.

We have acquired extensive expertise and experience in retail, residential and office property, which allows us to keep pace with market developments. This is reflected in our significant involvement in projects such as Les Promenades d’Helvétia, the Moka Smart City’s first residential development, as well as office buildings like The Pod at Vivéa Business Park and The Dot, a brand new undertaking at Telfair.

Smart Cities require an integrated and balanced approach, don’t they?

The underlying Live-Work-Play-Care concept of the Moka Smart City involves a mixed-use development using the latest advances in urban planning and digital technologies. Such developments also require environmentally sound, responsible and integrated space planning and management. We leverage our ability to develop integrated, high-quality projects that are consistent with sustainable development efforts.
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Over the past decade, ecology and innovation have been our key priorities in the development of Moka. The region is transitioning into a more sustainable and liveable city through the progressive rolling out of a concept of ‘citysmarting’. This flexible improvement process stems from a well-thought-out Master Plan. The core elements of the plan are: making optimum use of resources; offering an improved quality of life; creating real economic opportunities; and fostering engagement with key stakeholders.

Visit ready to live in apartments in the West Coast! Accessible to foreign buyers

Involvement in community life therefore remains an important component…

We have a strong commitment that goes beyond the social contribution required from certain property developments. La Balise Marina is also positioning itself as a key stakeholder in the Black River region with a contribution of Rs 15 million to date to promoting the empowerment of a number of people through training, employability and NGO support. All these initiatives are structured around Friends of La Balise, a platform for dialogue with the region’s socio-economic stakeholders. In the same vein, we took an innovative approach to launch the citizen collective, Moka’mwad, with the aim to develop a people-centric city. This will allow the residents to play an active role in the development of the Moka Smart City.

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