Mauritius: African Success Story

43 Pages Posted: 13 Dec 2010 Last revised: 11 Apr 2021

See all articles by Jeffrey A. Frankel

Jeffrey A. Frankel

Harvard University - Harvard Kennedy School (HKS); National Bureau of Economic Research (NBER)

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Date Written: December 2010

Abstract

What explains the success of Mauritius, a top performer among African countries? It has mostly followed growth-enhancing policies, which can in turn be attributed to sound institutions. But from where did the institutions come? Mauritius chose well around the time of independence in 1968, for example opting for the rule of law over nationalization of its sugar plantations. Some fundamental determinants that econometrically can explain success worldwide do not work within Africa: size, remoteness, tropics, and ethnic fragmentation. An intriguing theory: small islands that were populated entirely by immigrants escape the ethnic conflict that arises when one group is indigenous.

Suggested Citation

Frankel, Jeffrey A., Mauritius: African Success Story (December 2010). NBER Working Paper No. w16569, Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=1723015

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