Definition of Youth

Mauritius’ National Youth Policy (2010) defines youth as between 14 and 29 years of age and notes that “all persons within this age group are not homogeneous. A number of subgroups exist” depending on factors such as residence or religion.


Marriageable Age

  • Opposite Sex
  • Same Sex
  • Without parental consent
  • with parental consent
  • Male
  • 18
  • 16
  • XX
  • Female
  • 18
  • 16
  • --

  • Male homosexual acts illegal, however female homosexual acts legal. No specific legislation for same sex marriage. Source: UNSD, ILGA

Candidacy Age

Criminal Responsibility

Minimum Age
Source:  Criminal Code of Mauritius

Majority Age



Voting Age


Situation of Young People

Literacy Rates

Both sexes (15-24) %
  • 98.36% Male (15-24) %
  • 99.09% Female (15-24) %

Net Enrolment Rate

Secondary School
Both sexes %
  • 80.13%Male %
  • 80.73% Female %

Situation of Young People

Prevalence of HIV

Male (15-24) %
Female (15-24) %

Tobacco Use

Consumed any smokeless or smoking tobacco product at least once 30 days prior to the survey.
Both sexes (13-15) %
  • 20.30% Male (13-15) %
  • 7.70% Female (13-15) %
  • Year: 2010
  • Source: WHO

Policy & Legislation

Is there a national youth policy?
The national youth policy of Mauritius covers 2010-2014. A 2011 briefing is available.

The goal of the national youth policy (2010) is “to empower the youth of the Republic of Mauritius”. Youth empowerment is defined as “an attitudinal, structural and cultural process whereby young people gain the ability and authority to make decisions and implement change”.

The strategic areas of youth empowerment include education, health, substance abuse prevention, employment and access to ICT. The policy also recognises the National Youth Council as a “major implementing, supervisory and facilitating agency for youth development programmes”.

As a member of the Commonwealth of Nations, Mauritius is a signatory of The Commonwealth Plan of Action for Youth Empowerment (PAYE) 2006-2015. It lists 13 action points for member nations, including youth empowerment, participation and gender equality.

Public Institutions

Is there a governmental authority
(ministry, department or office) that is primarily responsible for youth?
The mission of the Ministry of Youth and Sports is “to create an enabling environment and act as a catalyst and facilitator for the promotion and development of youth and sports at regional, national and international levels”. It has the overall responsibility for coordinating the 2010 national youth policy. The Youth Section within the ministry runs its programmes primarily through youth centres throughout the country. The section is led by a Director of Youth Affairs, and each of Mauritius’ ten regions is under the responsibility of a Principal Youth Officer.

Youth and Representation

Does the country have a national youth organisation / association (council, platform, body)?
Mauritius’ National Youth Council (NYC) is established by the National Youth Council Act (1998) and is made up of national youth ogranisations and regional councils. It is administered by a board that includes appointees by the minister of Youth and Sports, a member elected by youth organisations and a representative nominated by regional youth councils. Its main objectives include maintaining effective communication between government and youth organisations, and ensuring coordination of youth organisations. The NYC is a member of the Commonwealth Youth Council.

Budget & Spending

What is the budget allocated to the governmental authority (ministry, department or office) that is primarily responsible for youth and/or youth programming?
MUR 70.5 million
USD 2.3 million
According to the Summary Table of Expenditure by Programme (2014) from the Ministry of Finance, the revised estimate of expenditure for Youth Services within the Ministry of Youth and Sports in 2013 was MUR 70.5 million (USD 2.3 million). According to the World Bank, Mauritius spent 14.96% of its government expenditure and 3.49% of its GDP on education provision in 2012.
Total Expenditure on Education as a Percentage of Government Spending and GDP

  • % of GDP
  • % of gov. expenditure

Source: World Bank
Gaps indicate missing data from the original data source. (Accessed May 2014).

Additional Background

From Youth Culture and Development in Mauritius (2011):  
The number of youth was estimated at about 311789 in 2008 representing roughly 25% of the whole population. Therefore, government stands to gain by catering properly for the need of the youth who will be future decision makers and voters as well. The NPY ensures that equal treatment and facilities are offered to all young people and no discrimination be made on the basis of gender, ethnicity, caste or class. Such a measure is highly beneficial for the population where the youth learn values like meritocracy, democracy, unity, cooperation and tolerance which are essential preconditions for living in multicultural Mauritius.
From National Youth Policy 2010-2014 (2010):

Youth Profile  
The Republic of Mauritius situated in the South West of the Indian Ocean comprises the main islands of Mauritius and Rodrigues with a total area of 1,969 square kilometres. The population, estimated at 1.27 million as at the end of 2008 is multi- ethnic, multi-cultural and multi-lingual.
The gender distribution shows that there were 628,105 males and 643,935 females in 2007. The growth rate in 2007 is estimated at 0.65% for the Republic of Mauritius and 0.73% for Rodrigues. The population density is estimated at around 620 persons per square kilometres. The youth population comprising the age group 15 to 29 was estimated to be around 311,789 and represented 25% of the total population as at end of 2008. Among these 157,310 (13%) were males and 154,479 (12.14%) were females.
The Republic of Mauritius has continued to experience a high literacy rate, with over 85% of youth attending educational institutions. This is a reflection of the successful implementation of the current government policy of free and compulsory education up to the age of 16 years.
  Youth Clubs  
In 2008 young people were grouped into 537 youth clubs spread out across Mauritius and Rodrigues had 72 such clubs.
The youth clubs, with a membership of 25 and above, cater for various categories of youth aged between 14 and 29.