Maldives to restore ties with India: Nasheed

Maldives to restore ties with India: Nasheed

Agency News

Male, Sep 25: Former Maldives President Mohammed Nasheed said that victory of Ibrahim Mohamed Solih on Sunday's presidential election will restore Maldives relationship with India.
In an interview to DW, Nasheed said: “The people have made their decision. They have clearly said how they want the Maldives to be. This was a vote for democracy, which will put the country back on the path of reforms. We'll now be able to strengthen our democratic institutions.”

Answering about the Maldives ties with Beijing after Solih’s victory Nasheed said: “It is difficult for command economies to understand democratic processes. The Maldivian people suffered a lot and they came out to make their voice heard. China can't understand this. The Maldives is not an authoritarian country.

He also thanked the European Union for its support of the democratic process. On the issue of Free Trade Agreement (FTA) with China, Nasheed said, all the agreements signed with the Beijing should be reviewed and he hopes Maldives will maintain consistency, stability of their policy and create an enabling environment for Chinese enterprises operation in the country”.

In September last year, Yameen’s government signed a Free Trade Agreement (FTA) with China. The Chinese loans for projects account for around 70 per cent of the country’s national debt. The Maldives has also leased an uninhabited island (Feydhoo Finolhu) to a Chinese enterprise for 50 years at a price of around $4 million, with plans to develop infrastructure for tourism.

According to Fitch rating, Maldives’ economy has grown by an average of 6 per cent a year for the last five years where tourism and construction are the major contributors. UNI