Housing Finance in Mauritius


For the French version of this country profile, click here.

To download a pdf version of the full 2018 Mauritius  country profile, click here.

The Republic of Mauritius (Mauritius) is a small island nation of only 2 040km2 in the Indian Ocean, with a population of about 1.27 million people as at December 2017 (396 335 households in 2016).

Mauritius boasts a vibrant financial services sector, contributing about 12 percent to the GDP.As at the end of June 2017, the financial system comprised 23 banks, of which 10 were local, nine were subsidiaries of foreign banks and four were branches of international banks.

Some 15 banks offer mortgage finance, and the use of mortgage finance is generally high by African standards, although it has declined recently. According to the Mauritius Housing Census, just over 12 percent of houses were mortgaged in 2011, versus 16 percent in 2000. Mauritius has a relatively large pension industry, and 51.4 percent of the labour force are contributors. The national pension fund is also involved in the housing sector and, for example, lends money to the Mauritius Housing Company (MHC).

The FinScope Mauritius study 2014 revealed a high level of financial inclusion, with only 10 percent of adults (above 18) classified as financially excluded; 85 percent of the adult population is banked; 49 percent use non-bank products/services; and 26 percent use informal mechanisms to manage their finances. Financial inclusion rates are hampered by income regularity as most financial products are pegged to consistent income.

The 2011 Housing and Population Census reports that there are 356 900 housing units in Mauritius and Rodrigues. Most housing stock in Mauritius is of good quality: 91 percent of the dwellings are durable with only 4.8 percent of the population living in iron/tin walled houses. The Census also found that 90.5 percent of residential dwellings were used as a principle residence, 1.7 percent as secondary dwellings and 7.8 percent were vacant. Semi-detached houses and blocks of flats went up to 16.6 percent of total stock, from 11.5 percent in 2000.

According to the African Executive (2014) for Mauritius to become a high income country, it needs to start attracting foreign skilled labour. If labour flows are similar to those experienced by Dubai, Hong Kong and Singapore at a similar stage, over the next decade Mauritius should be ready and willing to accommodate some 5 000 to 20 000 foreigners annually, with a total of 100 000 to 200 000 for the period. In the short run such an influx could be accommodated in the various real estate projects. However, going forward, this offers a greater opportunity in middle to higher end housing finance, as foreign investment

Find out more information on the housing finance sector of Mauritius, including key stakeholders, important policies and housing affordability:

Each year, CAHF publishes its Housing Finance in Africa Yearbook. The profile above is from the 2018 edition, which has up-to-date profiles for 54 African countries.

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