Maldives Foreign Minister meets Jaishankar, discusses regional, international issues

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External Affairs Minister S Jaishankar holds talks with Maldives Foreign Minister Abdulla Shahid (File Photo)
External Affairs Minister S Jaishankar holds talks with Maldives Foreign Minister Abdulla Shahid (File Photo)

New Delhi [India], April 17 (ANI): Foreign Minister of Maldives Abdulla Shahid (FMAS), who is in New Delhi on a two-day trip, met External Affairs Minister (EAM) S Jaishankar on Friday, sources said.

This was their 8th meeting since November 2018 when the government under President Solih took office in the Maldives.

This visit took place on the heels of EAM's visit to the Maldives in February this year. During this visit, Maldives Foreign Minister also participated in Raisina Dialogue through virtual mode.

According to the sources, Jaishankar and Shahid discussed issues of mutual interests pertaining to bilateral, regional and international domains. Covid-19 pandemic and avenues of Indian assistance in this field were also discussed.

They also said that Shahid requested the Indian side for the renewal of Directorate General of Foreign Trade (DGFT) notifications regarding the assured supply of essential commodities to the Maldives from India as per the bilateral trade agreement. EAM assured that Indian commitment will be honoured.

EAM re-affirmed India's support for Foreign Minister of Maldives Abdulla Shahid (FMAS) candidacy as the President of 76th UN General Assembly.

He also expressed satisfaction with a growing number of Indian tourists visiting the Maldives, which is aiding the Maldivian economy in these difficult times. Under the bilateral air bubble arrangement, India is already the number one tourist market for the Maldives with Indian tourists occupying 23 per cent of international tourist arrivals in the Maldives.

They reviewed the status of ongoing projects assissted by India in the Maldives. Currently, India is developing projects of USD 2 billion spanning across large infrastructure such as ports, roads, bridges, water and sanitation, as well as socio-economic development directly impacting the livelihoods of Maldivians.

Both Ministers also exchanged views on international organizations including UN, OIC, Commonwealth and SAARC and developments of common interest in the region. (ANI)