Accra, June 30, GNA - Mauritius is a pace setter in terms of development, President John Agyekum Kufuor said in Accra on Wednesday. He said: "Mauritius is moving rapidly to improve the standard of living of her citizenry and the GDP is among the highest in Africa." President Kufuor made the observation when welcoming Sir Anerood Jugnauth, Prime Minister and Head of Government of the Island of Mauritius, on his arrival at the VIP Lounge at the Kotoka International Airport, to begin a four-day state visit.
President Kufuor met Sir Anerood accompanied by his wife, Lady Sarojini Revi Jugnauth, on the gangway of the British Airways plane. The welcoming party included, Vice President Alhaji Aliu Mahama, Ministers of State, the Diplomatic Corps and Service Commanders.
President Kufuor said "how Mauritius achieved her high level of development is what the Government is determined to know and emulate."
Sir Anerood said this was his first visit to Ghana and expressed appreciation to the Government for the visit to participate in the 44th anniversary celebrations of Ghana's Republican status. He said Ghana and Mauritius were democratic countries that shared many things in common that could be enhanced for the socio-economic development of their people.
A programme released for the visit included a visit to the Akosombo Dam. He would attend a State Dinner in his honour at the Banquet Hall as part of the 44th anniversary celebrations of Ghana's Republic. Prime Minister Jugnauth would hold talks with President Kufuor at the Castle and visit the Tema Free Zone enclave.
The visit is a reciprocal one by President John Agyekum Kufuor to the island in May last year.
Relations between the two countries had remained largely at the multi-lateral level until August 2002, when the Ghana Government appointed Mrs. Michelline Feillafe as Honourary Consul in Mauritius to strengthen the existing relations between them.
In addition, the relations between Ghana and Mauritius date back to the days of the First Republic, under Osagyefo Kwame Nkrumah, who supported Mauritius' struggle for Independence. Ghana also supported Mauritius to join the Commonwealth.
Mauritius has a mixed developing economy based on manufactured exports, agriculture and tourism. Mauritius is seen as one of Africa's few social and economic success stories with a per capita of 8,800 dollars, one of the highest on the continent.
The Gross National Product (GNP) was growing more rapidly than the population in the early 1990s.