India elevated its ties with the Maldives to a new level by announcing $1.4 billion in combined developmental assistance, as the two neighbours assured each other that they will not allow their soil for activities that are harmful to each other’s interests. “We held successful talks in a cordial atmosphere. We vowed to strengthen ties. will not allow our countries to be used for activities which can be harmful to each other’s interests, we want greater trade ties with Maldives. There are increasing opportunities for Indian companies in the island nation,” said India’s Prime Minister Narendra Modi after talks with Maldives President Ibrahim Mohamed Solih jn New Delhi. This is Mr Solih’s first overseas trip after assuming the charge of the top office in the archipelago nation a month ago.
The two countries also signed four pacts, including one on visa facilitation. Mr Modi congratulated the people of Maldives for their successful and peaceful transition to democracy. He applauded the president of Maldives on his vision for an inclusive, decentralised, people-centric governance, and development that is sustainable. Recalling his government’s policy of ‘Neighbourhood-First’, PM Modi reiterated India’s assurance of all possible support to Maldives in realising its aspirations for socio-economic development, and strengthening of democratic and independent institutions. In this regard, Mer announced provision of financial assistance up to US$ 1.4 billion in the form of budgetary support, currency swap and concessional lines of credit to fulfil the socio-economic development programmes of the Maldives.
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