China has declared Maldives to be a friend and important international partner following successful bilateral consultations held between the two nations on 26 January.
Maldives and China held a successful seventh round of bilateral consultations on Tuesday, with the Minister of State for Foreign Affairs Ahmed Khaleel at the lead representing the nation. The Chinese delegation was headed by Vice-Minister of Foreign Affairs Luo Zhaohui. The bilateral consultations consisted of discussions on topics such as collaboration on an international level. efforts being made against the Covid-19 pandemic and further strengthening the diplomatic relationship between the countries.
Her Excellency Aishath Azeema, Ambassador of Maldives to China, His Excellency Amin Javed Faisal, Additional Secretary at the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, Ms. Maryam Bassama Farooq, Assistant Director and Ms. Fathimath Liusha, Assistant Director also participated in the meeting.
Speaking at the consultation, Minister of State for Foreign Affairs Ahmed Khaleel highlighted the benefits afforded to the Maldives under the One China Policy. He further expressed gratitude to Chinese government and enterprises for their generosity and assistance to the Maldives for the challenges presented by Covid-19. Speaking as the bilateral consultations were initiated, State Minister Khaleel acknowledged how critical it was to resume international travel between the Maldives and China so that Chinese tourists could visit Maldives. Delegations from Maldives and China went on to discuss avenues through which operations related to business and tourism could be resumed between the to nations, with State Minister Khaleel stressing the importance of swift and effective bilateral discussions in order to speed up the process.
Delegations of both countries also touched down on important development expansion projects being conducted in Maldives in association with China and Chinese investors, with both parties discussing options through which other such projects could be initiated in the future. The delegates also noted that 2022 would mark the golden jubilee of bilateral relations between the two nations, and agreed to consult closely in preparation for the historic event.
The Chinese Vice-Minister of Foreign Affairs Luo Zhaohui also spoke at the discussion, highlighting the close relationship between China and the Maldives and stating that such high-level bilateral talks between the two nations was clearly representative of the fact. Vice Minister Lui Zhaohui went on to declare the Maldives a friend and important international partner to China.
These bilateral consultations between Maldives and China are integral to further strengthening international cooperation, as well as discussing the joint future of travel, business and investment between the two nations. The last bilateral consultation between Maldives and China had been held in 2017, with the most recent round being conducted virtually in light of the Covid-19 pandemic.