Practice Area Articles


February 05, 2024

By Paul Hastings Professional

Back to International Employment Law



Introduction of the four-day working week

The four-day work week has been introduced for employees who opt for it. Under the four-day work week, employees will need to perform their normal weekly working hours (i.e., 45 hours or such lesser number of hours as contractually agreed) within four days, rather than distributing them across five or six days. The four-day work week can be requested either by the employer or the employee. The consent of the employee would be required if the request comes from the employer. If the request comes from the employee, the employer is required to grant the request, subject to its operational requirements. An employee who works according to a four-day work week is entitled to twice the basic rate for the first eight hours and three times the basic rate for every subsequent hour worked on a public holiday.

New provisions for paternity leave and childcare facilities

A provision for five days paternity leave where a worker and their spouse adopt a child who is younger than 12 months old has been incorporated in the Workers’ Rights Act. Another amendment stipulates that paternity leave will commence either from the birth date of the child, or from the day the mother is discharged after giving birth in a hospital or other medical facility. Employers who employ more than 250 workers must provide childcare facilities in the form of a crèche on the workplace premises or within one kilometre from the workplace. The provision must be free of charge to workers who have children older than three years old.

Portable retirement gratuity fund (“PRGF”)

Administrators of private pension schemes must ensure that the employer's monthly contribution is at least the amount required for the PRGF. Employers are now mandated to make electronic contributions to the PRGF through the Mauritius Revenue Authority's approved computer system. Employers insuring an employee under a private pension scheme must pay retirement benefits not covered by any scheme or fund after the employee's termination or resignation. The formula for calculating the lump sum or gratuity for part-time employees aligns with that of full-time employees. The notional calculation of the daily rate of pay is based on 26 days for both part-time and full-time employees. Employers failing to pay PRGF contributions may incur a 10% surcharge on unpaid contributions, plus 1% interest for the duration of the unpaid period. If an employer-sponsored private pension scheme fails to pay an employee's retirement benefit, the employer must pay the employee a lump sum equivalent to 15 days' remuneration per year of service.

With thanks to Javed Niamut, Sadia Soodeen, and Alicia Kwan Pang of Bowmans for their invaluable collaboration on this update.




Protection against termination of employment for poor performance

Employers are now prohibited from dismissing a worker by reason of the worker’s performance at work being affected as a result of an injury sustained out of and in the course of work where a medical certificate by a government medical practitioner is produced, certifying that he or she has not fully recovered from the injury.

An employer that dismisses a worker in contravention with the above prohibition, may be ordered by the Court to pay severance allowance to the worker (representing a sum equivalent to up to three months per year of service). Employers must not consider dismissal on grounds of poor performance in cases of injury at work affecting the performance of a worker.


Power of the redundancy board to reinstate

An employer can now be ordered by the Redundancy Board (the “Board”) not to reduce their workforce or close down their enterprise (the “Order”) if the Board finds the reasons in the notification provided by the employer to the Board for redundancy/closure are unjustified.

Failure to comply with the Order could result in either the Board ordering the employer to reinstate the worker in his or her former employment (with payment of remuneration from the date of termination to the date of his reinstatement) or order the employer to pay the worker severance allowance.

Before initiating a redundancy procedure, employers should ensure that the reasons provided in the notification to the Board showing cause for redundancy or closure are justifiable in that the Board will be satisfied that the enterprise is indeed over-indebted and not economically viable.


Option to reinstate

In instances other than reduction of the workforce or closure of enterprises, where an employer terminates the employment of a worker for any reason, the worker now has the option, instead of claiming a severance allowance, to register a complaint with the Ministry of Labour who may refer the matter to the Tribunal for an order of reinstatement. Non-compliance with an order of reinstatement will be an offence and the employer, on conviction, will be liable to a fine not exceeding 25,000 rupees and to imprisonment for a term not exceeding two years. To avoid the situation where an employee is ordered to reinstate a worker in his former employment, it is recommended that employers enter into a mutually-agreed compromise agreement in compliance with the Workers Rights’ Act.


Minimum wage for interns and apprentices

A minimum wage has been introduced for employees, including those who are recruited as trainees or apprentices, whose wages are not prescribed by the law. Should the employer fail to comply with the provisions of the Minimum Wage Act, it shall be liable, on conviction, to a fine not exceeding MUR 50,000. Employers will now be required to guarantee their interns and apprentices a monthly income.

With thanks to Javed Niamut, Sahirun Subadarm, Fazil Hossenkhan and Alicia Kwan Pang of Bowmans for their invaluable collaboration on this update.




New definition of “fully vaccinated”

As of 19 February 2022, the Consolidated COVID-19 (Amendment No. 5) Regulations 2021 came into force which bring with it changes to the definition of “fully vaccinated”. This new definition means that for a person to be “fully vaccinated” that person will have to:

  1. be vaccinated with a booster dose of COVID-19 vaccine within the specified timeframe;

  2. if the person previously tested positive for COVID-19, said person must be fully recovered therefrom (considered to be fully vaccinated provided that 4 months have not lapsed after the date of the positive test); or

  3. if the person previously tested positive for COVID-19, said person must be fully recovered therefrom and must within 4 months receive a dose of the COVID-19 vaccine, (considered to be fully vaccinated  14 days after the vaccination).

Subject to certain exemptions, anyone who is not “fully vaccinated” will be denied access to a list of specified institutions, including educational institutions, health centres, residential care homes, reform institutions, ports and airports,  unless that person produces a RT-PCR test slip certifying a negative result within the past 7 days.

Currently, there is no legislation in place that permits employers to compel employees to be vaccinated or permits them to terminate the employee’s employment if they refuse to be vaccinated or take a RT-PCR test.  However, the employer may resort to actions such as allowing employees to work remotely (subject to the nature of the work being performed) or, if this is not feasible, consulting with employees about possible changes to their duties. 


New Portable Retirement Gratuity Fund

From January 2022, employers in Mauritius are required to contribute to the Portable Retirement Gratuity Fund (PRGF) in respect of eligible employees. Eligible employees are employees other than the following:

  • job contractors, migrant workers or non-citizens;

  • public officers or local government officers;

  • employees whose retirement benefits are payable under the Statutory Bodies Pension Funds Act or the Sugar Industry Pension Fund Act;

  • employees whose retirement benefits are payable in accordance with a private pension scheme, provided the employer obtains a certificate issued by the Financial Services Commission certifying that it has a private pension scheme; and

  • employees drawing a monthly basic wage or salary of more than MUR 200 000.

The PRGF contribution is set at 4.5% of the monthly remuneration of the employee. However, for the period between January 2022 and December 2024, small and medium enterprises (SMEs) having an annual turnover of not more than MUR 50 million will benefit from a reduced contribution in the manner set out in the table below.

Annual Turnover


% of monthly remuneration* 

Less than MUR 2 million







Between MUR 2 million and MUR 10 million







Between MUR 10 million and MUR 50 million







*Monthly remuneration means the monthly basic wages paid to a worker and any productivity bonus, attendance bonus and payment for extra work performed.

The reduced contributions for SMEs as set out above are not applicable to SMEs providing services such as accounting, actuarial science, architecture, legal, tax, medical and allied health, engineering, land and quantity surveying, project management in the construction industry and property valuation.

Employers are required to pay their contributions to the PRGF to the MRA by no later than on the 20th of the month following the month in respect of which the contributions are due.




Contributions to the Portable Retirement Gratuity Fund

The moratorium to effect payment of contributions to the Portable Retirement Gratuity Fund (PRGF) which was introduced on 1 January 2020 was extended to 1 January 2022. However, upon termination of the employment of a worker during the period starting on 1 January 2020 and ending on 31 December 2021, the employer must submit a return in relation to the PRGF contribution amount due in respect of the worker within a month from the termination of the employment and shall not later than one month following a corresponding notification from the Mauritius Revenue Authority (MRA), pay the contribution to the MRA. In the case of a termination by the employer, the PRGF contribution will start as from the date of employment of the worker. In the case of the resignation of a worker who has been in employment prior to 1 January 2020, the PRGF contribution will start as from 1st January 2020. For the period starting on 1 January 2020 and ending on 31 December 2021, an employer may pay the PRGF contribution directly to the employee provided that a compromise agreement is entered into between the employer and the worker and some specified conditions are met.


Working from Home Regulations

The Workers' Rights (Working from Home) Regulations 2020 came into effect on 1 September 2020. The regulations allow employers to require a worker to work from home, provided notice of at least 48 hours is given to the worker. A worker may also make a request to the employer to work from home and employer may at its discretion accede to the request. The employer and the worker must enter into a working from home agreement in a prescribed form. The employer must, where appropriate, conduct a suitable and sufficient assessment at the proposed place of work to ensure that performance of work at the proposed place shall not entail any risk to the safety and health of the homeworker and members of his family. The regulations also provide for the payment of a disturbance allowance for work performed during unsocial hours, payment of work‑related expenses, access of the employer to the home of the worker and injury in the course of employment from home.


Temporary restriction on reduction of workforce

For the period up to 30 June 2021 no employer (employing not less than 15 employees or having an annual turnover of at least Rs 25 million) can reduce the number of employees in its employment, either temporarily or permanently or otherwise terminate the employment of any of its employees, except an employer who (i) is exempted from the above restrictions by the Ministry of Labour; or (ii) has applied for any of the financial assistance schemes set up by the Development Bank of Mauritius Ltd, Mauritius Investment Corporation Ltd., or the State Investment Corporation Limited, for the purpose of providing financial support to an enterprise adversely affected by the consequences of COVID‑19 and whose application has not been approved.

With thanks to Javed Niamut, Nafiisah Heehoo, Fazil Hossenkhan, Sahirun Subadar and Robin Pothiah of Bowmans for their invaluable collaboration on this update.

For More Information

Image: Suzanne Horne
Suzanne Horne

Partner, Employment Law Department

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Aashna Parekh

Associate, Employment Law Department

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