Are employers in Mauritius free to chose foreign employees?

Regardless of whether it is a national or an international investor, the employer must show that the skills required of the expatriate are not available on the domestic labour market in order for a foreign employee to be eligible for employment in Mauritius.

Do foreign employees require work permits and/or residence permits?

Non-citizens of Mauritius may opt to apply for a Work or an Occupation Permit to work and live in Mauritius.

A work permit is required for foreign employees with a prospected basic salary of less than MUR 30,000. It is the future employer who has to apply for the required work permit.

An Occupation Permit ("OP"), which is a combined work and residence permit, is required for professionals with a prospected basic salary of MUR 60,000, or MUR 45,000 for professionals in the Information and Communication Technology ("ICT") Sector.

Do employees' contracts of employment transfer on the sale/transfer of a business?

In Mauritius, there is no legislation per se governing the transfer of the employees' contract of employment in case of a sale of business. In principle, under the Mauritian law, a change of employer involves the termination of the first employment contract with the previous employer, followed by the conclusion of a new/second employment contract between the existing employees and the new employer.

In the event of the sale of a business or shift in the corporate structure of an enterprise, the employees may either decide to transfer with the business to the new owner or end employment with the business.

Pursuant to the Mauritian common law, there are three (3) conditions that must be met in order for a transfer of employment to be effective and these are as follows:

  • The new employer must make an explicit offer of employment to the employees of the former employer;
  • The employee must then accept the contract as proposed. In the absence of acceptance by the employee, the court could conclude that the original employer remains the employer;
  • Finally, the terms and conditions of the new contract must not be less favourable than those of the old one.

Originally produced by Juristconsult Chambers for DLA Piper.

The content of this article is intended to provide a general guide to the subject matter. Specialist advice should be sought about your specific circumstances.