Mauritius. According to CountryAAH, major public holidays in Mauritius include Independence Day (March 12) and New Year (January 1). Tourism, one of Mauritius’s main sources of income, declined at the beginning of the year due to outbreaks of the so-called chikungunya virus. The mosquito-borne virus was transmitted from island to island in the Indian Ocean. In April, some 250,000 people in the region had been infected, of which at least 6,000 were in Mauritius The virus causes high fever, dehydration and severe pain, but is slowly passing on by itself and is only life threatening for children and the elderly. The biggest concern in Mauritius was not the virus itself, but the risk of a sharp decline in tourism. However, the health authorities claimed very soon that the number of people with illness had begun to decline.
In June, it turned out that, after all, the number of tourists visiting the country had increased by 6% in the first quarter of 2006 compared to the same period the year before. However, the tourist flow from France, where most tourists usually come from, decreased slightly.
Before the virus broke out, Prime Minister Navin Ramgoolam had claimed that Mauritius has the capacity to receive over two million tourists a year, almost three times as many who visited the country in 2005. By the early 2000s, the tourism sector had stagnated, but in 2005 it began to grow again. and after the shaky start of 2006, the authorities believed in a continued increase this year. In addition to controlling and preventing the spread of infectious diseases, the government promised investments in infrastructure, increased security for tourists and environmental conservation, as well as developing ecotourism and health and cultural tourism.