n Agrekon - Are Mauritian fishery exporters minding the standards gap?

Volume 51, Issue 1
  • ISSN : 0303-1853
  • E-ISSN: 2078-0400
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Recent literature has provided evidence that exporters of agro-food products from developing countries experience problems in meeting sanitary and phytosanitary (SPS) measures of developed countries. The objective of this paper is to determine whether fishery products exporters from Mauritius, a southern African small island developing state, also face similar issues. It first provides an overview of fishery products exports from Mauritius, before reviewing SPS requirements facing exporters. This paper finally reports on the findings of a survey conducted among Mauritian fish exporters to assess the importance of SPS measures as a factor affecting exports. Results show that SPS requirements have not acted as a major barrier for Mauritian exports to the European market but in fact have provided them with a competitive edge. It was, however, acknowledged that SPS requirements and private voluntary standards, to a smaller extent, were increasing in importance. The most important reported factors affecting exports are freight, and other direct export costs. The findings also show that the majority of fishery exporters have adopted a reactive compliance strategy. It is therefore proposed that Mauritian exporters should adopt a more proactive approach in their compliance strategy, increasingly moving towards new market opportunities such as private food safety standards.

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