Yameen concedes that GMR is owed some compensation

With additional reporting by Ahmed Rilwan

President Abdulla Yameen has today said the government was sure it would have to pay some compensation for cancelling the agreement made with the Indian infrastructure giant GMR to lease Ibrahim Nasir International Airport (INIA).

“The truth we should accept is that a government with all its sovereignty has given permission to a foreign party under an agreement,” said the president.

“So we believe some sort of financial compensation must be paid to them. A compensation must be given for taking the airport [from them]. What we are trying to make sure this compensation is not big but average.”

Yameen was speaking to the press before leaving for Singapore to take part in the Maldives Investment Forum – an event he described as “the first step taken towards a fresh start for the Maldives in today’s world economy”.

In November 2012, President Dr Mohamed Waheed’s cabinet declared the GMR agreement void ab initio – invalid from the outset – and ordered the developer to leave, just two years into its 25 year concession agreement.

President Yameen explained to the press today that his advisors believed that, if the arbitration panel could be persuaded that the deal had been anulled due to the airport’s national importance, the compensation would be small.

GMR had initially claimed US$1.4 billion – a figure greater than the Maldives’ annual state budget.

Yameen’s Progressive Party of Maldives (PPM) formed part of the Waheed coalition government, though it’s leader – former President Maumoon Abdul Gayoom – has since accuse Waheed of going against his party’s advice by failing to reach an amicable agreement with GMR and the Indian government.

During his first official state visit to Indian in January, Prime Minister Dr Manmohan Singh requested President Yameen to “amicably” settle the GMR airport issue.

Earlier this month, Yameen had said that the out-of-court amount sought by the infrastructure company was too great, and that he would now await the outcome of proceedings, which could take up to another two months.

The US$511 million concession agreement to manage and upgrade the airport – awarded under the former government of Mohamed Nasheed – was the single largest foreign investment in the Maldives’ history.

President Yameen will tomorrow give the keynote speak at the landmark investment forum, as he seeks to generate interest from foreign investors for five ‘mega-projects’ – one of which is the further development of Ibrahim Nasir International Airport (INIA).

As part of the president’s attempts to lure foreign investors back to the country, he has promised special economic zones which hopes will be “likened to cities in Dubai or the Emirates” and “the [business] environment we have in Singapore.”

Senior management of Singapore’s Changi International Airport visited the Maldives earlier this month, with Yameen explaining the purpose of the visit to press this afternoon.

“Changi’s management will be our final consultant with the terminal [project] and other consultancies required for the airport,” he explained. “We want to seek technical expertise and information on how to do things from Singapore Changi.”

“The project has progressed far now, Changi has expressed interest. So we believe all the supervisory and consultancy work of this terminal will be carried out by Changi.”


12 thoughts on “Yameen concedes that GMR is owed some compensation”

  1. Good...let the stupid Maldivians who voted in this regime taste the bitterness....koba ekkala "takaa, takaa" group, kobaa funnaabu kee kahaani Azima Takooru? LOL!

  2. "He explained to the press that his advisors believed that, if the arbitration panel could be persuaded that the deal had been anulled due to the airport’s national importance, the compensation would be small."

    "He" being Yameen, correct? And the reason GMR was thrown out was "national interest"? So now Yameen (Gayoom and company) wants to find a foreign investor to develop the airport?

    That translates to the following. Gayoom and company felt sad and left out because they always got the profits from foreign development until Nasheed got elected. Nasheed and company made the GMR deal in the same way Gayoom would have if he was in power at the time. Bribery and extortion closed the deal of course, the only way any deal is done here. MACL is totally incapable of doing anything productive because it's Maldivian owned/managed. So Gayoom uses religious fundamentalists and brainwashed sheep to start anti GMR campaign in the name of national protection. Get rid of Nasheed because he is "corrupt". And then Gayoom, Yameen and company can get back to giving the airport development to another foreign country.

    And "everyone" wins!!! By everyone, I mean Gayoom, Yameen, Saudi princes and Eastern Euro hookers! Today's world economy is back on track in Maldives!

  3. So the sordid story of GMR in Maldives ends by the GoM handing out GMR millions of tax payers money which is gained through increasing duty and tax because having a foreign company operating the airport is a threat to national security? And now the GoM is going to Marina Bay Sands hotel to invite foreigners to invest in Maldives, i.e., Changi Airport is to be given shares of Male' airport? Well Temasek or BS Ong better understand the logic of Maldivian politics - there's simply nothing another opportunistic Maldivian claiming the same reason and beguiling the Maldivians to arm twist another government to throw out the Singaporeans. The question is in this cat and mouse game, what will be the stake of the next Indian government?
    As for Azima, less said the better. An empty cooking pot will have more acumen than this sorry excuse. But I hear it was Shaheen who confirmed this wonderful legal logic of void ab whatever. Or was it a sitting SC judge who is giving an "expert deposition" for Maldivian government on the subject over which he is also to decide if the matter comes up on any possible future appeal? Wunderbar!

  4. I don't expect GMR winning damages of USD1.4 billion as they claim. But even an amount of USD100 million is enough to hit Maldivian economy very hard. More importantly than that, they have irreparably damaged till-then very cordial relations between Maldives and India. I wonder where are Adalath and other fundamentalists who were representing contract cancellation as victory of Maldives (and Islam) over India (and Hindus/Jews/put any name you want). Are they still celebrating - I bet they are since they completed what they wanted to do - bring in Gayoom family back in power.

  5. After all the talk, the still have to pay GMR missions - oh what a tangled web we weave when others we seek to deceive

  6. I remember summer blue ibrahim Manik, airing Indian movies without the owners consent and getting fined.
    For the blunder we pay.

    Kutti cash Nasheed, airing football matches without paying espn, claiming any signal in the air is Maldives' right and that he can do whatever he wants with it.
    For the blunder we paid.

    President Nasheed single handedly made this incredible blunder, at the expense of the nation. Indian negotiators rank among the top in the world, and representing us in the GMR was the all-knowing Raazy, who couldn't differentiate f..k from a fart.

    But we made the blunder. So we pay.

    The ultimate cream of blunders is the public, who were denied of their right of using brains, when the King raped/killed the girls as the sea monster, which led to the Morroccon con-artist sow the seeds of ignorance into our society.

    But we made the blunder and now we pay heavily for this.

  7. Where's that Hero and Kuribee and Ann and all? I want to expropriate their funds!

  8. GMR did nt invest even 5 dollars.
    They planed to invest money collected from passengers.They called it ADC.

    That is a local investment.

    All this Maumoon Yammen vs Anni is distraction.GMR is illegaly squezing millions from us.Reality is we are loosing millions.I hold the initiator of this GMR deal responsible.

  9. surprise surprise -- if you allowed GMR to develop the airport this year you would have a wonderful international airport to allow more people to visit and help the economy now you will have to pay millions back and destroy the economy

  10. Miyothee hathareskan hamavefa! Dhen Azima Taakooru adhi Fahari Imran dhuvey filan!
    "NEW DELHI: Bangalore-based infrastructure company GMRBSE 0.39 % said on Friday that it will not change its compensation claim of $1.4 billion from the Maldivian government over the termination of a contract to develop and operate the Male International Airport".
    Read more at:

  11. @Sunny

    Ah, another foreign mercenary enters our borders to earn some cash. Acting career was getting too risky, Ms. Leone?


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