Last Updated: October 01, 2023, 13:27 IST
India’s intelligence officer Vivek Johri is set to take charge as the new National Security Advisor (NSA) to Mauritius, as part of the traditional arrangement between the two countries.
As the NSA, the Indian security officer is the single-point person on all counter-terrorism matters. He works closely with the Indian NSA and Mauritius PM.
Johri is known to be a no-nonsense upright officer and will be working closely with the Indian NSA. As an intelligence officer, he has worked in Nepal and neighbouring countries. He has a vast experience of handling complex matters and situations.
WHY IT MATTERS
According to top intelligence sources, here’s why the development matters:
- The Chinese presence in Mauritius is increasing.
- The Indian Navy is looking for a new Naval base like China’s in Djibouti for stopover and refueling.
- Mauritius is the connectivity route for all major trade and shipping bases.
India has close, longstanding relations with Mauritius, an island nation in the Western Indian Ocean, owing to historic, demographic and cultural reasons. A key reason for the special ties is the fact that Indian origin people comprise nearly 70% of the island’s population of 1.2 million, according to the Ministry of External Affairs.
The ties have also resulted in uniquely close cooperation in maritime security, development partnership, capacity-building, and cooperation in international fora. The close bonds are also evident in the numerous India-assisted development projects that dot the Mauritian landscape. The cultural and people-to-people ties between India and Mauritius are nurtured by the Indian Cultural Centre in Mauritius (India’s biggest in the world) and the World Hindi Secretariat, a bilateral organization for the promotion of Hindi.
READY TO HELP
India has traditionally been the ‘first responder’ for Mauritius in times of crisis, including during the Covid-19 and Wakashio oil-spill crises.
Since 2005, India has been among the largest trading partners of Mauritius. At USD 9.39 bn, Mauritius became India’s third largest source of FDI in 2021-22.
Mauritius and India signed the Comprehensive Economic Cooperation and Partnership Agreement (CECPA) on February 22, 2021, during the visit of EAM Dr S Jaishankar to Mauritius. In May 2016, India provided a grant of USD 353 million to Mauritius as a Special Economic Package. It extended a USD 500 mn Line of Credit (LoC) in 2017, an LoC of USD 190 mn and USD 10 mn grant in 2021, andextended another LoC worth USD 300mn and a grant of USD 25 mn in 2022 for its infrastructure projects.
There are approximately 12,973 Indian nationals and 10,139 OCI card holders currently in Mauritius. In pre-Covid times, annually about 80,000 Indian tourists visited Mauritius and 30,000 Mauritian tourists visited India.