Electricity, plug/outlet types and power sources in Mauritius

Electricity in Mauritius is 230V/50Hz with British-style three-pin sockets (Type G) and the Continental two-pin variety (Type C). Although Mauritius has almost ideal conditions for solar energy and good conditions for wind energy, the country lacks a sustainable energy strategy. Thus extensions are mostly made with fossil energy based power plants and you'll see very few private houses with solar cells.

Voltage, Frequency and Plug/Outlet Type in Mauritius

Electricity in Mauritius is 220/230V, 50Hz. If you travel to Mauritius with a device that does not accept 220/230 Volts at 50 Hertz, you will need a voltage converter 1. Both British-style three-pin sockets (Type G) and the Continental two-pin variety (Type C) are commonly used. Sometimes you'll even find both in the same room.

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The best power adapter for Mauritius is a special Type G power adapter which is suitable for powering any 230 volt device or appliance (Type G and C). If you want to stay in your resort/hotel only, organise adapters before you travel. If you are ready to visit some shops, you'll find adapters easily in almost any supermarket.

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Main sources of Energy in Mauritius

Power generation in the country is highly dependent on fossil fuels. In 2009, 79% of the electricity generation in Mauritius was from fuel oil (diesel and heavy fuel oil), kerosene (used exclusively at the 70 MW Nicolay gas turbine plant) and coal, with the rest of the energy mix provided by hydro (5%) and bagasse (pulpy residue left after the extraction of juice from sugar cane). For the same year, Mauritius Island had a nominal installed capacity of 442 MW with a total energy production of 2,274.1 GWh. While Rodrigues Island, on the other hand, had a nominal installed capacity of 11.5 MW that generated 31.5 GWh during 2009, with 95.9% of the electricity generated derived from fuel oil and the balance of 4.1% was provided by small wind farms.  There is no electric utility on the Island of Agalega where the 300 inhabitants are supplied with electrical power using small diesel generators operating in three isolated mini-grids under the responsibility of the Outer Islands Development Corporation. Between 1999 and 2009, the renewable energy input has stagnated while the total energy requirement is steadily growing.

As a fast-developing economy, Mauritius has to meet increasing energy demand, particularly in terms of peak electricity. In 2009, the peak demand attained 389 MW, representing an increase of 17% over the last 5 years. The peak occurs during summer with the difference in the maximum demands between summer and winter increasing from 25 MW in 2004 to 40 MW in 2008. This difference is due to the massive use of ventilation, air-conditioning and refrigeration during the summer months, particularly during the recent years that have been marked with high average temperatures and the construction boom in the residential, tourism and services sectors. Mauritius has the specificity of being an island state with fragile ecosystems. Its high population density and vulnerability to climate change add to the challenges facing it in terms of sustainability. The more so that it depends on imported fossil fuels and on a tourist industry with its main asset being the beauty of the island.

For more information:

  • GEF (2011): Mauritius: Removal of Barriers to Solar PV Power Generation in Mauritius, Rodrigues and the Outer Islands.
  • Elahee, Khalil (2011) ‘The challenges of the potential options to meet the peak electricity demand in Mauritius’. Journal of Energy in Southern Africa, Volume 22, number 3, pg 8 - 15.
  • Elahee, Mohammad Khalil (2011) ‘Sustainable energy policy for small-island developing state: Mauritius’ Utilities Policy 19 71-79.
  • Parry, Ian (2011): Reforming the Tax System to Promote Environmental Objectives An Application to Mauritius, IMF Working Paper.
  • Businessmega.mu (2011): Energy Efficiency Bill in Progress in Mauritius.
  • AFREPEN/FWD (2009): The Role of Feed-in Tariff Policy in Renewable Energy Development in Developing Countries.
  • Mauritius Research Council (2011): National Trend Analysis – Energy.
  • CEB (2008): Power Generation in Mauritius.
  • AFREPREN/FWD (2011) About Us.
  • 1. There are three main types of voltage converter. Resistor-network converters will usually be advertised as supporting something like 50-1600 Watts. They are light-weight and support high-wattage electrical appliances like hair dryers and irons. However, they can only be used for short periods of time and are not ideal for digital devices. Transformers will have a much lower maximum Watt rating, usually 50 or 100. Transformers can often be used continuously and provide better electricity for low wattage appliances like battery chargers, radios, laptop computers, cameras, mp3 players and camcorders. However, they are heavy because they contain large iron rods and lots of copper wire. Some companies sell combination converters that include both a resistor network and a transformer in the same package. This kind of converter will usually come with a switch that switches between the two modes. If you absolutely need both types of converter, then this is the type to buy.