India on Sunday signed a $50 million defence Line of Credit agreement with Maldives, reiterating its commitment towards its security and to boost the maritime capabilities of the strategic island nation. The agreement was signed between Maldives Finance Ministry and Export Import Bank of India.
The signing of the agreement took place after External Affairs Minister S Jaishankar, who is on a two-day visit to the country, held talks with Maldivian Defence Minister Mariya Didi, Minister of Finance Ibrahim Ameer, Minister of Economic Development Fayyaz Ismail and Minister of National Planning, Housing and Infrastructure Mohamed Aslam.
“Useful exchange on our defence cooperation. India will always be a reliable security partner for the Maldives,” Mr Jaishankar tweeted.
“Glad to sign with Defence Minister @MariyaDidi the UTF Harbour Project agreement. Will strengthen Maldivian Coast Guard capability and facilitate regional HADR (Humanitarian Assistance and Disaster Relief) efforts. Partners in development, partners in security,” he said.
Meanwhile, Mariya Didi tweeted on the same.
“From time immemorial Defence Cooperation has been a key element of the sisterly relationship that exists between India and the Maldives. The Coast Guard Harbour & Dockyard at SIFAVARU will mark another significant milestone,” she tweeted.
Additionally, a project execution contract was also signed in presence of Jaishankar for the construction of roads in Addu, the second-largest urban area in the Maldives in terms of population.
“Underscores the importance of connectivity in our Maldives partnership,” he tweeted.