The Minister of External Affairs of India, Dr S. Jaishankar has departed from Maafaru International Airport after concluding his two-day official visit to the Maldives.
The External Affairs Minister arrived in the Maldives on 18 January 2023 and called on the President of Maldives, Ibrahim Mohamed Solih and met with his counterpart, Minister of Foreign Affairs, Abdulla Shahid, where both Ministers reviewed the development cooperation projects and discussed strengthening collaboration in various avenues. Both Ministers also discussed the projects currently in various stages of implementation, under the grants and five lines of credit extended to the Government of Maldives, from the Government of India, through the Export Import Bank of India.
The Minister of Foreign Affairs, Abdulla Shahid and Minister of External Affairs, Dr Jaishankar witnessed the exchange of three key agreements including the Memorandum of Understanding of 100 million Rufiyaa to undertake additional High Impact Community Development Projects and the Memorandum of Understanding for the establishment of Gaafu Dhaal Gadhoo Sports Complex during a ceremony held in Noonu Manadhoo. Additionally, Memorandum of Understanding on capacity building to facilitate exchanges and co-operative initiative between Maldives National University and Cochin University of Science and Technology was exchanged during the ceremony. During the visit, the Minister of External Affairs also attended the groundbreaking ceremony of Hanimaadhoo International Airport Development Project in Haa Dhaal Hanimaadhoo, being constructed under the Indian line of credit facilitated by the Government of India valued at 136.63 million US dollars. In addition, Minister of Foreign Affairs of Maldives and Minister of External Affairs of India jointly inaugurated the Shaviyani Foakaidhoo Community Centre, a project valued at 5.2 million Rufiyaa completed under the Indian grant assistance scheme of 106 million Rufiyaa provided in 2019.
Both Ministers agreed to further intensify the cooperation and enhance Maldives-India partnership. This visit marked a significant milestone in strengthening the bilateral relations between the two countries. During the visit, the Minister of External Affairs also visited Haa Alif Utheemu and toured the historical sites.
Minister of External Affairs was seen off at Maafaru International Airport by the Minister of State for Foreign Affairs, Ahmed Khaleel and senior officials of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs.