India, Maldives sign 4 MoUs including on GMCP, cooperation in sports

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The MoUs were signed during a ceremony here
The MoUs were signed during a ceremony here

Male [Maldives], November 9 (ANI): India and Maldives on Monday signed four Memoranda of Understanding (MoUs) including on the Greater Male Connectivity Project (GMCP) with the Maldives foreign Affairs Minister Abdulla Shahid stating that India is "undisputed first responder, the best of friends, an invaluable partner".

The MoUs were signed during a ceremony here which was attended by visiting Indian foreign Secretary Harsh Vardha Shringla and Maldives Foreign Minister Abdulla Shahid.

Speaking during the ceremony, Maldives foreign Affairs Minister Abdulla Shahid said the relationship between two countries is built on shared values and traditions.

"Ours is a relationship of people - built on shared values, shared culture and traditions... India is the undisputed first responder, the best of friends, an invaluable partner," he said.

Besides MoUs on GMCP and sports, the two countries also signed two other agreement to be implemented under the High Impact Community Development (HICDP) scheme, according to a statement Maldives foreign ministry

They include a project to construct an Agricultural Research Centre in Hanimaadhoo and another to finance a component of the Drug Detoxification Centre to be built in Hulhudhoo of Addu City.

Under the two MoUs, the Indian government will provide financial support of Maldivian rufiyaa 1,711,434.60 (USD 111161.41) for the project to establish an Agricultural Research Centre. The Indian government will also contribute Maldivian rufiyaa 7,980,536.69 (USD 518353.26) towards the development of the Drug Detoxification Centre.

The statement said MoU on USD 100 million grant for the Greater Male Connectivity Project reflects the understanding between the two government on the implementation and financing of the largest infrastructure project to be executed in the Maldives.

This project involves the construction of a series of bridges and causeways that amount to 6.7 kilometres long connecting Male to Vilingili, the industrial zone in Thilafushi, together with the newly proposed International Port at Gulhifalhu.

The MoU on Cooperation in Sports and Youth Affairs was also signed. It seeks to increase training opportunities for aspiring athletes and coaches, as well as harness new skills and gain valuable experience, thus heightening the people-to-people connections between the Maldives and India.

Shringla began his two-day visit to the Maldives on Monday with a call on President Ibrahim Mohamed Solih and held substantive discussions on India and Maldives relations, the progress of ongoing development projects under USD 1.3 billion financial package.

Indian High Commission said that Shringla is visiting the Maldives to take forward partnership between the two countries. He will engage with the Maldivian leadership, key Ministers and a cross-section of the national leadership and society, the commission said. (ANI)