Context: This article explains the policy process that occasioned the development of comprehensive tobacco control policies in Mauritius from 1980 to 2019. It does so by drawing theoretical insights from John Kingdon's streams framework, historical institutionalism, and ideational perspectives to explicate how tobacco control rose to the status of government policy agenda.

Methods: The main sources of data are government documents, media reports, archival studies, grey literature, and published books and articles. These sources were supplemented by key informant interviews with government officials, civil society groups, and other vested interest groups.

Findings: This article finds that the prevalence of noncommunicable diseases in the late 1980s, the political commitment of Mauritius's Labour government to comprehensive tobacco control, the institutional legacies of Mauritius's Public Health Act of 1925, and the administrative capacity of Mauritius's Ministry of Health and Quality of Life are the primary factors that drove tobacco control policies in Mauritius.

Conclusion: The findings from this study will enrich our understanding of policy change and the politics of tobacco control in the global south. Future research should investigate why some countries in Africa have failed to adopt comprehensive tobacco control policies despite ratifying the Framework Convention on Tobacco Control.

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