India and the Maldives on Monday signed a memorandum of understanding (MOU) to provide a $100 million Indian grant for the Maldives’s ambitious Greater Male Connectivity Project
India and the Maldives on Monday signed a memorandum of understanding (MOU) to provide a $100 million Indian grant for the Maldives’s ambitious Greater Male Connectivity Project. Indian ambassador Sanjay Sudheer and Maldives Foreign Minister Abdul Shahid signed the MOU during the two-day visit of Indian Foreign Secretary Harsh V Shringla.
The Greater Male Connectivity Project, with an estimated cost of $500 million, is the most ambitious development project undertaken by the Indian Ocean archipelago. India’s Exim Bank is financing the project with $400 million funds.
The project is expected to start in mid-2021, informed Maldives Economic Minister Fayyaz Ismail.
The Maldives thanked India for its timely assistance of $250 million as budgetary support during the COVID-19 crisis. Both countries have signed four MOUs. India would set up soil testing facilities, establish a drug detox facility, and cooperate on youth affairs.
India also backed Maldives Foreign Minister Abdullah Shahid’s bid for the presidency of the United Nations General Assembly next year.
Foreign Secretary Shringla appreciated Maldives’s “India first” policy adopted by President Solih and also added India is reciprocating it in its “Neighbourhood First” policy where the Maldives enjoys a special place.