New Delhi: A Digital Video Conference (DVC) was held on Wednesday between Prime Minister Narendra Modi and Maldives President Ibrahim Mohamed Solih. Both the leaders launched some of the important initiatives that were announced during the last one year.
At the DVC, PM Modi spoke of India's steadfast commitment to the socio-economic development of the Maldives in line with the priorities of the people and Government of Maldives.
PM Modi underscored that the convergence of India's 'Neighbourhood First' and Government of Maldives's 'India First' policies have strengthened bilateral cooperation in all sectors.
PM Modi also shared a video his address with the title Boosting India-Maldives friendship
Boosting India-Maldives friendship. Watch. https://t.co/cS2YWywkYP
— Narendra Modi (@narendramodi) December 4, 2019
Four bilateral grant projects that represent the breadth and ambition of the development partnership between India and the Maldives were highlighted at the DVC.
The projects include:
1. The Gifting of a ‘Made in India’ Patrol Vessel named "KAAMIYAAB” to the Maldives National Defence Force (MNDF). The brand-new vessel will be manned by 8 MNDF personnel trained in India and will be a valuable asset for Maldives in enhancing its maritime security, fostering its blue economy and safeguarding its tourism industry.
2. Exchange of MoUs for 3 grant projects for setting up neighborhood fish plants in the southernmost atoll of Addu. Mindful of the geographic spread of Maldives and the development needs of its people, these High Impact Community Development Projects (HICDPs) will be implemented by the Addu City Council in the Maldives. These projects are being implemented under the MoU signed during late Smt. Sushma Swaraj’s visit to Maldives in 2019 and will help support the livelihoods of the island communities in Addu.
3. Exchange of an MoU between National Payments Corporation of India (NPCI) and the Bank of Maldives (BML) to launch the RuPay Card in Maldives. In 2019, tourist arrivals from India to Maldives have doubled and India has risen from 5th to the 2nd position in the tourism market of Maldives. The launch of the Global RuPay Card in Maldives through the Bank of Maldives will pave the way for higher tourist arrivals from India and, eventually, stronger people-to-people contacts between the two countries.
4. Installation of LED streetlights in Male. 2500 LED streetlights donated by India were installed in Male recently. These streetlights save 80% energy and will result in cost savings of approx. 8.35 lakh MVR per year for Male city. They will also add to the safety and security of the residents of Male particularly women and children.
Expressing his deep appreciation to India for its support to the development aspirations and security of Maldives, President Solih conveyed his commitment to deepen cooperation and partnership with India. Both leaders agreed to work closely together to enhance cooperation for peace, prosperity and mutual security of India and Maldives and for the wider Indian Ocean region.