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EXPATRIATES IN MAURITIUS
» 27 Sep 2012
OLGA LESHCHENKO, THE RUSSIAN LADY

HI OLGA, CAN YOU SHARE YOUR ORIGINS WITH US?

I was born in Siberia, in Novosibirsk city, but grew up in the Republic of Altay. This is a picturesque mountain
area in the South East of Siberia on the border with Kazakhstan, Mongolia and China. Sometimes they call it
“The Pearl of Siberia” or “Russian Switzerland”. After graduating from high school, I moved to Barnaul where I
entered the Foreign Languages Department at Barnaul State Pedagogical University. It was during my student
years that I met my husband.


WOW, SOUNDS LIKE A BEAUTIFUL PLACE, IS THERE ANYTHING YOU’D LIKE TO SHARE ABOUT YOUR CHILDHOOD?

My childhood was not any special. My parents got sepa-rated when I was 2, and all the rest of the years my mother
was trying to set up a complete family but did not have luck with men, so you can say that I grew up in a non-complete environment. However, I am very thankful to my mother and grandmother, as they were the main contributors to my upbringing. It was only when I grew up that I re-established relationships with my father and I regret all the time lost without him which I cannot take back.


IS THERE ANY LIFE CHANGING MOMENT WHICH YOU EXPERIENCED BEFORE COMING TO MAURITIUS?

Travelling and meeting new people contributed signifi-cantly to my life. Actually, only through the communica-tion with the diversity of others, you start to understand people and most important yourself better. All in all, I can
say that all the people whom I considered interesting, or those whom I appreciated along contributed something to my own personality and it is because of them I am who I am now. I learned something from all of them


WE’VE REACHED THE ULTIMATE QUESTION! WHAT BROUGHT YOU TO MAURITIUS?

Our move to Mauritius was very unexpected for me and adventurous. You can say that we moved from the heart of Siberia (Krasnoyarsk city where we lived for the last year before moving to Mauritius) to the heart of the Indian
Ocean. My husband was invited to work for an offshore company and because we love to travel and were planning to be International anyway we decided not to lose such an opportunity to learn more about this Paradise Island.


AND HOW DO YOU OCCUPY YOUR TIME HERE WITH US? DO YOU WORK?


One year later we noticed that Mauritius for a number of objective and subjective reasons is becoming an ideal
place for many Russians to diversify their portfolio. I opened my first company “Manage-Consult Studio WEST-EAST Ltd.” together with my Russian counterpart who works in the banking sector of Russia. The major goal of the company is to promote Mauritius for the potential investors in Russia and help Mauritius reach out to a broader audience. Looking through a number of projects we saw a niche and joined our initial idea with the prac-tical implementation on the family level. So we decided toopen a Russian restaurant that would become a uniting and meeting point for all the Russians and Russian speak-ing people as well as an informal business club for those who would like to explore other opportunities.


APART FROM FOOD, ARE THERE OTHER THINGS YOU ARE PASSIONATE ABOUT?


I always crave for knowledge, I love to read but of course I do not read everything available on the bookshelf. I only choose pieces of literature which cultivate and help develop the love and appreciation of humanity and beauty. Actually I believe that art and literature is not an exception, it helps develop spiritual beauty and the sense of beauty in general in people. I adore theatres and particularly opera.



ON AN ENDING NOTE, CAN YOU PLEASE TELL US WHAT YOU LOVE MOST ABOUT LIVING IN MAURITIUS?


Mauritius is a lovely Paradise corner. The best place for family life - you cannot even think about any other. Mild
climate, smiling, friendly and amicable people who are ALWAYS ready to help. We sincerely fell in love with Mauritius. Our daughter was born here – this might have being also part of the decision to invest in this country and encourage others through this example. Quality of life and the way our children feel here and their future is the big part of that decision as well.

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