Legal Market Overview
In a significant headline, global brand Dentons entered the Mauritius market in 2018 through its merger with respected legacy firms Mardemootoo Solicitors and Balgobin Chambers as Dentons (Mauritius) LLP. The market is now home to several international law firms, with Appleby, ENSafrica and Eversheds (Mauritius) Ltd (a member of Eversheds Sutherland) also on the ground. In addition, Juristconsult Chambers is a member of the DLA Piper Africa group. However, Conyers Dill & Pearman pulled out of its joint venture with Venture Law.
The appeal of Mauritius to foreign players lies in its status as a regional hub for financial services. In addition to positioning itself as a gateway to Africa, the offshore jurisdiction has long promoted its investment links with India. Although, the recent elimination of the capital gains tax exemption between Mauritius and India has impacted upon that particular relationship, Mauritius remains the top source of foreign direct investment into India: in 2017-18, it invested $13.4bn into the country, according to figures from the Reserve Bank of India.
Mauritius maintains a hybrid legal system, which draws inspiration from both civil and common law practices. Similar to the British system, the legal market is served by both barristers and attorneys. However, barristers outnumber lawyers in Mauritius and often advise on non-contentious matters as well as litigation.